Texas courthouses are among the most widely recognized, used, and appreciated assets in our communities. With some courthouses dating from as far back as the mid-19th century, they were among the first permanent structures in many counties. With their brick and stone towers, ornate cupolas, and soaring domes, they represent an impressive collection of public architecture. Not surprisingly, Texas has more historic courthouses than any other state—235 are still in active government use. With decades or even centuries of use, most of these structures have significantly deteriorated due to inadequate maintenance, insensitive modifications, or weather-related damage.
The Texas Historical Commission's (THC) nationally recognized and award-winning Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program (THCPP) has turned around the trend of disrepair and begun restoring these treasured historic landmarks. To date, the program has funded 67 Texas courthouse restorations and another 26 courthouses have received emergency or planning grants to complete small projects.
Today, restored county courthouses serve as a catalyst to economic revitalization in the business districts that surround courthouse squares throughout the state. Counties with restored historic courthouses also see an impact in the form of increased tourism, accessibility, safety, energy efficiency, and much more.
In support of the projects completed with state grant funds, the THC also created the Texas Courthouse Stewardship Program, which provides technical assistance and training to county staff in how to maintain their newly restored courthouse.
Courthouse review staff at THC are here to help. If you have questions about your courthouse, please contact the reviewer for your county.
Gross State Product generated through the Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program
Round X Grant Cycle
The THC is accepting for Round X of its award-winning Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program. The program received just over $20 million appropriation from the 85th Texas Legislature for the 2018–2019 biennium. Round X grant application procedures, forms and a timeline for submitting documents for review are found at the link below.
Restored Texas Courthouses Boost Heritage Tourism
In this video from the Texas Society of Architects, watch Texas State Representative Andrew Murr describe the urgent need to fund courthouse preservation in our state.
Click on any image to view the photo gallery.