1841-1842 (circa) – First permanent courthouse built for $8,000 at Aspen and Chestnut Streets, which later became First and Second Avenues, next to the site of the present courthouse.
1904 – Contract for new courthouse awarded to local builder W.F. Edwards; first courthouse torn down. Richard Sharp Smith, an architect from Asheville, drew the design for the new courthouse.
July 1905 – Edwards hands over keys for new courthouse to Henderson County Commissioners. Courthouse sits on west side of Main Street between First and Second Avenues. It cost $38,000, but the county withheld $500 until the first cold day to test the heating system.
1915 – St. John Hotel on Main Street burns down, scorching courthouse woodwork and dome. Edwards repairs the damage.
July 1925 – Brick jail built behind the courthouse near Church Street for $75,000.
1943 – Courthouse condemned; Superior Court moves to City Hall. Repairs estimated at $25,000. Repairs completed in 1944 and court returns.
1952 – Courthouse expanded.
1956 – Commissioners approve courthouse addition for Register of Deeds, Sheriff’s Office and Board of Elections
1972 – State court system reorganized and addition to courthouse needed at a cost of $40,000. County commissioners move out.
1982 – Repairs to shore up floors and inner supports completed.
November 1991 – A reinforced dome with a gold-colored fiberglass coating is dedicated.
1994 – Sheriff’s office moves out of the courthouse.
1995 – New courthouse built for $7.6 million; old courthouse closed.
1999 – Henderson County Commissioners appoint a committee to look at reusing the courthouse. The committee suggested four options, including adding a parking garage and demolishing the old jail, which would be replaced with a new one in 2001. The cost was estimated at $7.5 million.
2001 – Commissioners vote to move forward with renovations of the courthouse and demolition of the jail, but loss of state money and other budget shortfalls scuttled the plans by 2002.
2003 – Commissioners appoint a 21-member committee to recommend a use for the historic structure and how to pay for its renovation.
2003-04 – County Commissioners vote to make use of Historic Courthouse as a working government building and heritage museum.
2005 – Centennial celebration of Historic Courthouse. The renovated Henderson County Historic Courthouse houses county offices, including commissioners’ offices and meeting rooms, and the Henderson County Heritage Museum.