Niagara District Court House, better known as the Court House Theatre, is a former court house and venue for the Shaw Festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada.
The neo-classical, three-story building was constructed between 1846 and 1847 to designs by the Toronto architect William Thomas (and built by Garvie and Co.) for the then Niagara District. The building replaced an earlier court house for fear of being near range of cannon fire from Fort Niagara. Inside it had a courtroom, town hall chambers, offices and jail cells.
The building was used as one of a few venues for the 1850 Provincial Agricultural Fair of Canada West. The courthouse function remained until judicial courts moved to St. Catharines in 1863; the building then served as town hall and jail until 1866. It became an orphanage for girls from England from 1869 to the early 20th century.
In 1962 the courthouse became home to the Shaw Festival. It received designation as a National Historic Site in 1981.
Photo captured September 26, 2017.
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