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Anderson County Courthouse

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1914, C. H. Page and Bro. 500 N. Church St.

The typical cross-axial plan of this classical courthouse is accented here by an octagonal rotunda, topped with a tall drum of arches between pilasters and a low dome. Similar to Page’s other courthouses of the time, the monumental composition consists of a rusticated base, a two-story Ionic colonnade around the building, and an entablature and balustrade. Projecting pedimented Ionic porticos are on all four sides of the building. The use of dark brown brick for the base and upper walls contrasts with the white stone columns, producing the effect of a peripteral temple. The courthouse replaced a Second Empire building of 1886 by W. C. Dodson that burned in 1913.

One block away at 704 Avenue A, the Old Anderson County Jail of 1931 by Theo S. Maffitt replaced the 1879 jail on the same site. The stepped form of the three-story tawny brick jail reflects the angle of Avenue A across the original town grid. The geometric Moderne ornament on the cast-concrete entrance porch and portal is the only example of this style in town. Theo S. Maffitt (1895–1958) and his son and later partner, Theodore S. “Ted” Maffitt Jr. (1923–2007), converted the old jail into a juvenile detention center in 1992.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Anderson County Courthouse", [Palestine, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: East, North Central, Panhandle and South Plains, and West, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2019, 68-70.

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