Location Information
(for the Tallahatchie County Courthouse Second District)
Name:Tallahatchie County Courthouse (Second District)
City/County:Sumner, Tallahatchie County
Architectural Information
Construction Date:1910
Architectural Styles(s):Romanesque
Registration Information
NR Listing Date:06 Mar 2007
View National Register Nomination Form
Mississippi Landmark Information
Book/Vol. No.:v. 296, p. 255
Easement Information
No. of Active Easements:4
Date Signed:02-06-2002
Easement Type:Preservation/Maintenance
Date Signed:01-07-2008
Easement Type:Preservation/Maintenance
Date Signed:02-11-2010
Easement Type:Preservation/Maintenance
Book/Vol. No.:V.235 Pg. 205-207
Date Signed:09-08-2015
Easement Type:Preservation/Maintenance
Book/Vol. No.:V. 2015 Pg. 1184-5
The Tallahatchie County Courthouse at Sumner was originally built in 1903, but it was destroyed by a fire in 1908. It was rebuilt in 1909-10 under the direction of W.S. Hull, who had been the architect of the earlier building, and it is almost identical in design to the original building. The courthouse reflects the popular Richardsonian Romanesque style, executed in brick. Characteristics of the style can be seen in the broad low arch over the main entrance, round arches on the upper windows, and the pyramidal-roofed towers. In 1955, the courthouse was the scene of a trial that attracted international attention and contributed to the growing civil rights movement. Emmett Till, a 14 year old African-American youth from Chicago, was visiting relatives in Mississippi when he was kidnapped and brutally murdered. Two local men, J. W. Milam and Roy Bryant, were charged and tried for the kidnapping. The all white jury acquitted both men after deliberating less than one hour. Both men were later to admit their guilt, but no further charges were ever filed. The building was designated a Mississippi Landmark in 1990, and was listed on the National Register on March 6, 2007 for statewide significance, amended to national significance August 6, 2007. The National Register nomination was written by Bill Gatlin, MDAH architectural historian. The building received a 2002 Community Heritage Preservation Grant of $100,000.

It is included in "Buildings of Mississippi" (2020) (pp.126-127, DR47).