Your Opinion: Preserve county jail, sheriff’s house

Dear Editor:

Several years ago the Cole County Commission in conjunction with other county officials recognized the need to restore and preserve various artistic and architectural elements of the Cole County Courthouse. The result was a beautiful blend of old and new.

In comparison, a not so pleasing aesthetic companion to the Cole County Courthouse is the courthouse annex, previously the City National building.

A repeat should not occur with the existing 1936 Cole County jail and sheriff’s residence, a structure being considered for possible demolition. The structure currently complements the courthouse. The 1936 jail building should not meet the same fate as did the old jail, which was located on the present site of the Jefferson City Police Department.

The current old jail is significant both architecturally and historically. There are very few jails with attached sheriff’s residences remaining in Missouri.

During the 1970s and 1980s, I served with the Cole County Sheriff’s Department and prosecuting attorney’s office. The old jail represents a chapter in our history.

Based on statistics provided by the Cole County Commission renovation rather than demolition is feasible.

Gentlemen of the Cole County Commission, please preserve the exteriors of the old jail and sheriff’s residence so our architectural heritage may be retained for future generations.

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