Built between 1890 and 1893 at a cost of $74,000, the Jefferson County Courthouse sits a block north of the square in downtown Fairfield, Iowa. The courthouse, which was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1981, is constructed of Cleveland gray sandstone and red brick.
Like many courthouses in the state, changes to the building have centered around the clock tour. In 1948, a violent wind storm damaged the 36-foot steeple on the clock tower, and county supervisors voted to remove the steeple to save the expense required for repairs. Lifelong Fairfield resident Lee Gobble successfully renewed an effort to restore the steeple, which has now been a part of the clock tower since 2004.