Woodstock, a town settled by Loyalists following the American War of Independence, was named after Woodstock Parish, established in 1786. The parish was named in honor of William Cavendish-Bentinck, 3rd Duke of Portland and Viscount Woodstock, who briefly served as British Prime Minister in 1783. Members of Colonel De Lancey’s Brigade, who fought in the Siege of Ninety-Six and the Battle of Eutaw Springs, were granted land in the area and formed three small settlements in 1784: the Upper Corner, the Creek Village, and Lower Woodstock..
In 1832, when Carleton County was created, Upper Woodstock became the shiretown, thanks to Colonel Richard Ketchum’s influence and land donation for public buildings. However, after a bridge was built across the Meduxnekeag River, the Creek Village experienced rapid growth and was eventually chosen as the Town of Woodstock.
The Old Carleton County Court House in Upper Woodstock, built in 1833 and expanded in 1866, was the first courthouse in Carleton County. It saw numerous county residents pass through its doors for various reasons, such as stagecoach passengers, farmers attending agricultural exhibitions, politicians and their supporters, audience members for choral concerts, and individuals involved in legal matters.
In 1911, the County Council sold the Old Carleton County Court House, which was subsequently converted into a barn. For fifty years, animals occupied stalls made partly from the judge’s bench. The Carleton County Historical Society purchased the building in 1962 and began the monumental task of restoring it to its former grandeur.
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