After its creation in 1796, Bulloch County functioned without a courthouse while local officials debated where the county seat should be located. During this time, superior court sessions were held in private homes and other places. Following Statesboro’s designation as county seat in 1803, a wooden courthouse was built. In 1807, the first courthouse was replaced by a larger wooden building, which served until burned during Sherman’s March to the Sea in 1864. In 1866, the legislature authorized county officials to levy a tax for rebuilding the courthouse. Proceeds of this tax were used to build a two-story wooden building, which served until the present courthouse was built in 1894 (see photo). As part of a renovation in 1914, pedimented porticos supported by columns were added to the entrances to the courthouse.
By the 1960s, the Bulloch County courthouse had undergone several renovations that had utilized brick of different colors. This may have been the reason why the county commission decided to have the entire courthouse exterior coated with a white plaster that contained asbestos. In the 1990s, the county commission decided to undertake a major restoration of the courthouse. To remove the white plaster, it would have been necessary to sand blast the courthouse exterior. However, because of the damage this would do to the brick’s surface, the Historic Preservation Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources encouraged Bulloch County officials to leave the plaster coating in place. The architect in charge of the courthouse restoration then recommended painting the white coating with a red color to simulate the appearance of brick. When the actual restoration of the courthouse began in 1998, the contractor found some areas where the white plaster was flaking or peeling and needed to be removed. Because of the health risk posed by the asbestos, a professional hazardous waste removal contractor was hired. Most of the white plaster, however, still adhered to the courthouse exterior and was simply painted a red brick color. The restoration, completed in 2000, left the Bulloch County courthouse looking much as did following the 1914 renovation.
Need for space in the 1990s led the county to expand into several buildings adjacent or near the courthouse in downtown Statesboro. In the 1990s, Bulloch County built a modern judicial annex across the street from the courthouse (see photo).