Fire destroys historic courthouse and county's records

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A majestic Georgia courthouse was gutted by an early morning fire Monday that filled the 1883 brick building with flames and left it a roofless shell.

Arson investigators are now at the fire scene at the Hancock County Courthouse in Sparta, Georgia, reports WAGT.

No one was reported to be injured, but the building contained the county’s records. It had been under renovation.

Photos accompanying the article show the courthouse engulfed by fire while it was still dark outside, with flames shooting up from where the clock tower and roof should have been. In daylight, smoke rises from the blackened shell and the entire second floor of the building appears to be missing, with a clear view through the windowless walls of blue sky above and beyond the building.

Flames already filled the courthouse when firefighters arrived, reports the Associated Press.

A Vanishing North Georgia blog post shows a photo of the National Historic Register site before the fire.

The Hancock County GA GENWEB Project provides more information about the history of the county, which dates back to 1793.

Hat tip: Peach Pundit

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