Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Historical Commission in need of courthouse construction photos


The Coryell County Courthouse will celebrate its 125th anniversary honoring the completion of the courthouse construction in 1898. The building was started the previous year in 1897. This summer, there will be a celebration on the courthouse lawn commemorating the structure’s anniversary.

The Coryell County Historical Commission is in the need of your help. Photographs of the actual construction of the courthouse are being sought. If you have or know of any photographs of the construction, please notify the historical commission, which is located at the Coryell County Main Street Annex at 800 E. Main Street.

The Coryell County Courthouse is a historic building located on the courthouse square, the county seat of Coryell County. Built in 1897–98, it was the county's third courthouse; Architect Wesley Clark Dodson, a designer of many civil buildings in Texas, designed the Beaux Arts building. In his design, Dodson modified the traditional cross-axial plan to allow for the erection of a central tower. By moving the district courtroom to a position alongside the tower rather than centered underneath it, he was able to extend the masonry support walls to the ground and support the tower.

An important feature of the courthouse is the massive classical porticos, differing somewhat in scale and treatment, which define the north and south entries. The south portico has paired corner columns, while the north has single columns. The porticos rise from a one-story base of rusticated stone with arched entries in the lower level. The openings flanking the central arch are smaller on the north facade. Red sandstone Corinthian columns support white sandstone pediments, with the five-pointed star of Texas inset in contrasting carved stone.

The courthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.