Named for John Paulding, a Revolutionary War soldier whose capture of a British spy implicated Benedict Arnold in treason, Paulding County was formed in 1820 from the last remaining unorganized area of Ohio. Sparsely settled, it remained under the jurisdiction of Wood County until 1824 and then Williams County until 1839. Paulding's first county seat was established at New Rochester in 1839, then moved to Charloe in 1841. Centrally-located Paulding Center became the county seat in 1851, and a courthouse was built the following year. The present courthouse, built during the region's timber boom of the late 19th century, was designed by architect Edward Oscar Fallis and patterned after his Lenawee County courthouse in Adrian, Michigan. The four-faced Romanesque style building was completed in 1888 at a cost of $40,000. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.