The 20th Century
The old wooden portion of the Warden's house and several cells were torn down in August, 1921. The Freeholders hired the Pauley Jail Company of St. Louis, Missouri, at a cost of $75,000, to build twenty-eight cells attached to the old jail, fourteen cells on each tier. These cells had running water and a toilet.
-----The County began to show signs of population growth after World War I and the need for an additional Court Room became apparent. A new Hall of Records, to house the County Clerk in the first floor and a Court Room and law library on the second floor, was built in 1926 at a cost of $55,805.42. An alley was created between the two buildings with a bridge connecting the upper floors of the original Court Room to the new Court Room.
-----The County showed little population growth during the depression years of the 1930's. World War II brought officers to the area from the Naval Air Station at Lakehurst and Fort Dix. After the war many returned to live here permanently. By 1950 the County population began to expand.
-----In 1954, when the Garden State Parkway was completed and new housing developments began to sprawl about in the County and new citizens began to flock to the County from the cities, this second jail of 1921 could no longer accommodate the increasing crime rate. In 1940 we had a County population of 36,706. The demands for additional facilities became apparent as the County population expanded to 56,622 in 1950. In 1958 there were 98,300 citizens.
-In 1950 the first of two additions were made to the west wing of the original Courthouse, called the West Wing. The County Clerk's Office occupies this addition while the Surrogate and Small Claims Courts occupy the 1974 second expansion of the West Wing.
-----The 1926 Clerk's Hall of Records was torn down to make way for the 1950 East Wing expansion. In 1956 Hankin Hyers, Architects, designed four new courtrooms which were added to the 1950's section of the East Wing. New Judges were added to the Courts as the population growth propelled the County into a new era.
-----The Courthouse Annex was built on the east side of Hooper Avenue, opposite the Courthouse, in 1959 to house the Board of Election and the new voting machines which replaced the paper ballots.
These machines were removed in the early 1970's and stored elsewhere. The first and second floors of the building then became the headquarters for the Planning Board, Road Department, and Engineering Department.
-----The Courthouse became so crowded by the 1970's, when the County population had grown by an additional 100,000 in the decade of the '60's and had reached 208,470, that a new facility was required to house the Board of Freeholders and the administrative division of the County. The Administration Building was built in 1973 on the east side of Hooper Avenue, opposite the East Wing of the Courthouse.
-----In 1961 an additional jail expansion added a capacity for 110 inmates which was used in conjunction with the 1921 wing of the old Sheriff's House. The Probation and Sheriff's Department were also located in this addition located behind the 1950 East Wing Addition. This 1961 jail addition still did not meet the court and jail needs of the County since the population was increasing by 100,000 each decade. It had reached 346,038 by 1980.
-----In 1985 the fourth jail to be built in the County along with seven new courtrooms were added in a new facility called the Justice Complex. The new jail, with 196 cells, was built to the north of the Courthouse, incorporating the old Sheriff's Street and former home site in its building site.
-----The Sheriff's Department moved its headquarters to the Justice Complex in 1985 with the Prosecutor's Office taking over their remodeled 1961 jail addition.
-----Courtrooms occupy the first two floors of the facility while the fourth floor is devoted to the Department of Corrections and jail cells.