Courthouse and Square in Intruder in the Dust (Location)

Display Label: 
Courthouse Square
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Authority : 
Faulkner map

The county courthouse sits in the middle of a tree-shaded square at the center of Jefferson, and throughout Faulkner's fictions represents the center of Yoknapatawpha as well. It also serves to locate the county in time: the narrative mentions how "the courthouse and everything else on or in the Square [was] burned to rubble by Federal occupation forces after a battle in 1864" (48-49). Some years later the town erected "the slender white pencil of the Confederate monument" in front of the reconstructed courthouse (48). It is a central setting in the novel too, as the gathering place for the crowd of whites who wait on Sunday and Monday to see what will happen to Lucas. Nearly every secondary location in the narrative is described in reference to the Square. These include the post office (3), the drugstore (30), multiple churches (as indicated by their "steeples," 41), the garage where cars are repaired (53), the Holston House hotel, whose name is all that survives of one of the original three white settlers of Yoknapatawpha (74), the Western Union office "where hourly cotton reports come in" (118), the "sales barns behind the Square" where the weekly livestock auctions are held (131), the "cafe which stays open all night" next to the night marshal's "little cubbyhole of an office" (206-07), the town "power plant" (207), the "record-and-sheet music store" (232), the "army-and-navy supply store" (232) and the town's two "feed stores" (232).

Site of Event
Courthouse and Square; Jefferson Event