Tax Credit Program Highlight: Rowe Building

Ennis, Ellis County



Listed in National Register as part of Ennis Commercial Historic District

Historic Use

Retail/Dry Goods

Current Use

Offices and Cafe

Date Certified

January 2, 2017


Also certified for Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credits

Project Contact



This striking building occupies one of the most visible corners in downtown Ennis, and was originally home to the Matthews Brothers Dry Goods store. The two-story brick structure features numerous Victorian frills executed in brick, such as pilasters, belt courses, diamond-shaped insets, corbelling, sculptural parapets, and an octagonal turret. Hix McCandless, a local engineer and contractor, constructed this building and many others throughout Ennis in this time period. He had a reputation for quality work, as three years earlier, the Ennis Weekly Local announced, “Work has begun on the K.P. [Knights of Pythias] hall and so another handsome building will soon grace our town. Mr. Hix McCandless is the contractor, which warrants the work being quickly and acceptably done.” The building has largely been used for retail purposes over time and received a heavy interior remodeling in the 1980s.

Rehabilitation Project

Ennis was hit by a tornado in 2014, and the building received heavy damage, including large holes in the roof (which in turn caused interior water damage) and loss of its turret roof. The current rehabilitation project began with repairs from the storm damage—including reconstruction of the turret—and continued to incorporate exterior repainting and window repairs, as well as interior improvements for the new office tenant. Interior changes included new mechanical systems, construction of an elevator, and creation of new restrooms, offices, and conference rooms.

Photo Gallery

Click on any image to view the photo gallery.

  • The crowning feature of this Victorian building, its turret roof, was recreated after it had been completely pulled off by the 2014 tornado. The sculptural brickwork seen in this image is typical of the period. The original wood windows remain in the building and were retained.