Coryell County (Gatesville)

                        
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Architect: W.C. Dodson.

Year Built: 1897.

Constructed in 1897, the Coryell County Courthouse is located in Gatesville. It was designed by Wesley Clark Dodson in the Beaux Arts style with Romanesque details, but is also referred to as “Second Empire Victorian” and “French Second Empire” design. In his design, Dodson modified the traditional cross-axial plan to allow for the erection of a central tower.

Texas from the THC Historical Marker:

An outstanding example of Second Empire Victorian style, often seen in Texas Courthouse design. Erected in 1897 on land donated by early settler R. G. Grant. Architect for this third Coryell Courthouse was W. C. Dodson; builder,Tom Lovell. Limestone and red sandstone blocks were precut to the exact size at quarry, then hauled here by horse-drawn wagons. At each entrance are columns in Roman Corinthian style; and over the east entrance are columns in Roman Corinthian style; and over the east entrance is builder’s mark of an owl. Statues on the roof represent “Justice.” Noted trials have been held in this building.

Dodson also designed the following courthouses, all of which differ significantly from his Coryell design:

  • Anderson County (Palestine)
  • Denton County (Denton)
  • Fannin County (Bonham)
  • Hill County (Hillsboro)
  • Hood County (Granbury)
  • Houston County (Crockett)
  • Hunt County (Greenville)
  • Johnson County (Cleburne)
  • Kaufman County (Kaufman)
  • Lampasas County (Lampasas)
  • Parker County (Weatherford)
  • Wichita County (Wichita Falls) (1886 courthouse demolished in 1915)