Devaki Knowles

Best Fourth Time's a Charm

Hays County Courthouse

Now recognized by both the Texas Historical Commission and National Register of Historic Places, the Hays County Courthouse saw a lot less pomp and circumstance back when it was first established in 1848; the small log building that housed its courthouse also served as a church and school, among other public uses. It wasn't until 1861 when county officials employed C.F. Millett that Lady Justice got to stand in style atop the dome. The initial two-story pine building eventually burned, but the hopes and dreams of the people prevailed. Like a phoenix from the ashes, the county courthouse (now constructed out of limestone) rose again, thanks in part to architect F.E. Ruffini, who designed other county courthouses as well as buildings on the UT-Austin campus. And then there was another fire. This time it only destroyed the courthouse's top story. Another Austin architecture company, C.H. Page & Brother, swooped in to design the eclectic courthouse that can still be seen today (with restorations made in 1972) in the middle of the San Marcos Square.

Hays County Historic Courthouse
111 E. San Antonio St., San Marcos, 512/393-7779

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