“Holding Court” by Stephen Lucy P.E. & Mark LeMay AIA

Date Posted: Mar 01, 2013
Location: Dallas, TX

“In the late 1800s and early 1900s, Texas counties waged fierce and significant battles against one another.

The battles did not involve any form of armament and there was no bloodshed. They were for bragging rights as to which county could building the most magnificent courthouse.

Texas, by far, boasts the largest contingent of county courthouses in the U.S.: 254. According to the Texas Historical Commission (THC), 220 of these were constructed prior to 1948 and 80 were placed into service in the 1800s. Today, 136 of them are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Early versions constructed in wood rarely stood the test of time. Fire razed many of these structures, and valuable records of county life were forever lost. County officials soon realized that more permanent structures consisting of stone, masonry, concrete and steel were needed to safeguard official county documents…”

Published in the March 2013 issue of Modern Steel Construction.

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