Tour # 11:
Crossing to the West side is the site of Newton’s first house. It was built by Major John Moore in the 1850’s. Until the courthouse was erected, it is said the Major (also the County Clerk) kept the county records in a tent in his yard. Some of the court records were in a box attached to a tree! In the past, this side has seen Dr. Hall’s Drug Store, a movie theater. Griffin’s Pharmacy, and Ed Miller’s Barber Shop. Still on location are Rydman’s Hardware, Phillips 66 and the Barrow Insurance Building. At the corner of Kaufman and Court is another of Newton’s new businesses – The Art Forum.
Over the years an ice plant, livery stable, box factory, veneer products,variety stores, dress shops, beauty parlors, grocery stores, and auto dealerships have surrounded the Courthouse Square. Everything from dry goods to coffins to farm implements have been sold on the Square! In fact, it seems Dr. Trotti has had a dentist office on the second floor of almost every building in Newton!
(For more detailed Information about the courthouse and Newton, be sure to visit the History Center and Museum. Also, Glimpses of Newton County History, Newton Nuggets, and Crosscuts are three books that hold a wealth of Newton history. They can be purchased at the Museum.