Texas courthouse history cuts a wide swath through our heritage past. With 254 counties, Texas counts more courthouses than any other state in the country. Our earliest courthouses date from the mid-19th century, placing them among the first permanent structures built in our counties. Many Texas courthouses are listed in the National Register of Historic Places, are designated as Recorded Texas Historic Landmarks, and State Archeological Landmarks. Our courthouses reflect Texas history in their styles, construction materials, and architectural detail. However, old buildings require special care and can be lost without it. Lose a courthouse and we lose a vital link to our community’s past.
The Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program (THCPP) is one of the largest and most far-reaching initiatives ever conceived by a state government. Using state funds provided by the Texas Legislature, the grant program assists communities across Texas with courthouse preservation, renewing the buildings’ use as viable government centers and breathing vitality into town squares—making a visit to one of these magnificent buildings a dynamic experience. The Texas Historical Commission (THC) has partnered with counties to restore dozens of courthouses so far. Additional funding is necessary to restore the remaining courthouses in need. Does your old courthouse need some tender loving care? Your state legislators and the THC can help!
Explore restored courthouses with the Town Square Walk Around mobile tour, featuring a rich blend of images, videos, maps, and useful visitor information for exploring historical sites across Texas. Download the app directly to your iOS or Android device. (NOTE: If you are opening the mobile tour on a desktop, narrow your browser window to resemble mobile screen proportions for a better view of the content and options.)
County courthouses featured in the mobile tour include: Cooke (Gainesville), Denton (Denton), Old Red (Dallas), Ellis (Waxahachie), McLennan (Waco), Williamson (Georgetown), Hays (San Marcos), Comal (New Braunfels), Bexar (San Antonio), and La Salle (Cotulla).
To explore all THCPP restored courthouses in Texas, use the interactive map and links below.