A piece of history restored at the heart of a scenic small town
Built in 1888 in an Italianate vernacular style, the Clay County Courthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975. The courthouse was used for official business until 2007, when a new facility was built on the outskirts of town. Clay County Communities Revitalization Association took on the task of preserving the historic courthouse as one of its main goals. The association raised funds to restore the iconic building to the simplicity and beauty of its early roots. In 2018, Hayesville celebrated the grand opening of the historic site. Rechristened the Beal Center to honor local benefactor Ron Beal, the historic courthouse is available for meetings and events including weddings, family gatherings or celebrations of life, trade expos and cultural events, as well as concerts, dances, community events and children’s programs.
Newly restored, the venue is available to the public for social and business functions. Events make it stand out as the heart of the community. The upstairs courtroom space is a premier event center. An elevator and ADA restroom on the second floor make it easy for guests to access the upstairs. While touring the building, visitors will hear courthouse stories and history and see the results of the historical restoration. They will learn about the unexpected damages encountered during its renovation, illustrating just how close the community came to losing the building.
In the gift shop, visitors have the opportunity to purchase a piece of history, including large and small laser printed blocks made from the original floor and ceiling joists that had to be removed during the restoration. Each piece is numbered and has a statement on the back as to its origin. The wood came from trees that were cut down in 1888 and used in the construction of the courthouse.
The small town of Hayesville offers a surprising variety of eating, shopping, and outdoor experiences. Quilters will enjoy seeing quilt squares mounted on the sides of businesses throughout the community.