Fairfax County Courthouse History
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The Historical Fairfax Courthouse at 4000 Chain Bridge Road was built in 1800. It is a national landmark and was the seat of civil war activity, changing hands from Confederate control to Union control and back several times. The first officer casualty of the Civil War occurred on the grounds here. Captain John Quincy Marr was killed during a skirmish between Union cavalry and the Confederate Warrenton Rifles who were then occupying the courthouse grounds. This courthouse is still in use today and is currently the home of the Fairfax Juvenile and Domestic Relations General District Court & Clerks Office.

The Jennings Judicial Center located at 4110 Chain Bridge Road was erected in 1982 and is named after former Fairfax Circuit Court Chief Judge Barnard F. Jennings. It houses the Fairfax Circuit Court & Clerks Office, the General District Court & Clerks Office, Office of the Commonwealth's Attorney, the Fairfax Bar Association and Law Library, and the Sheriff's Office. The Magistrate's office and the Adult Detention Center are connected to the Jennings building.

Fairfax County, Virginia was created in 1742 from Prince William County. When it was formed it encompassed land that is now the Counties of Loudoun, Arlington, and Fairfax, and the Cities of Alexandria, Falls Church, and Fairfax. Fairfax County was the home of George Washington, the first president of the United States. President Washington and Martha Washington's Last Will and Testaments were probated in Fairfax and are frequently displayed in the Circuit Court Clerk's Office at the Jennings Judicial Center.

Among the nation's landmarks located in Fairfax County are President Washington's Mount Vernon Estate and George Mason's home, Gunston Hall. When Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence he drew from George Mason's Virginia Declaration of Rights for the first few paragraphs. Later, when the Bill of Rights was written and added to the U.S. Constitution, it was also based upon Mason's Virginia Declaration of Rights which was adopted by the Virginia Constitutional Convention on June 12, 1776.

Today, at the cross-roads of Fairfax City and Fairfax County sits George Mason University, a prominent national university.

Fairfax, Virginia is located in the suburbs of our nations capital, approximately 25 miles south. Fairfax County is a large suburban area consisting of more than 960,000 residents.


Last Modified: Tuesday, May 29, 2012


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