Walnut Room this way

Walnut Room this way

Friday, December 23, 2011

Texas Courthouses: Shackelford County, Albany

Shackelford County courthouse was built in 1883-84 from the plans of architect J. E. Flanders, who designed several other Texas courthouses in the Second Empire style.  (As a child living in Baylor County, I have wonderful memories of visiting the library located on the first floor of the courthouse, under the stairwell.  I read every edition they had of the Bobbsey Twins, and anything else probably.  My greatest gift has been my love of reading, and reading about local history.  I was truly saddened when I learned that the Baylor County courthouse--pictured in the Flanders link--had been demolished for the building that now takes it place.)  This is the oldest courthouse in continuous use in Texas, and the only Flanders' courthouse in this style that remains today.  It was the first courthouse to be restored under the Texas Historical Commission's Courthouse Preservation Program.

The building is made of local limestone, quarried a few miles from the site.  The building was erected by Scottish stonemasons, and the foundations are two feet deep on "natural concrete" or caliche.  (Many of the county roads in this part of Texas were "paved" with caliche.)  The walls are 4 feet thick.
 The clock tower was added at the request of the local residents, even though it increased the cost of the building.

No comments: