Our latest project involves the restoration of the c.1830s Judge Richard Johnson law office for use as a museum. Judge Johnson (1847-1921) practiced law there in the late 1800s, and the building will be restored to that time period. The tenants prior to Judge Johnson are unknown at present. For more about Judge Johnson and other early law offices of Clinton, click here.
The major source of funding for the project is a bequest from the Estate of William Lamar Cawthon, Jr. David Mitchell of M.H. Mitchell, Inc. will oversee the restoration. Mr. Mitchell is a co-executor of the estate and an OCHS Board member.
Progress to date:
January 26, 2016: We moved the building from its original location on Madison St. near the old courthouse square to a site near our Schoolhouse Museum (shown above). For more about the move, click here to read The Jones County News coverage and here for a slideshow of the event.
Fall 2016: The building was surveyed by students Olivia Head and Ross Sheppard from the University of Georgia’s Master of Historic Preservation program, under the direction of Professor James K. Reap. Their excellent report documents the history of the building, assesses its present structural conditions, and recommends procedures for restoration. Click here for a summary of their recommendations.
April 29, 2016: A barbecue lunch and dedication ceremony were held on the grounds near the law office. Among the guests were Judge Johnson’s granddaughter, OCHS Board member Patsy Johnson Childs, and a number of her children and grandchildren including two of her sons, attorneys Frank and Craig Childs, and son Rick Childs who is also an OCHS Board member.