J. Riely Gordon designed the courthouse using the Romanesque Revival style. It is one of only four that represents Gordon's early Romanesque design style. A 1926 addition on the south facade by Phelps and DeWeese features the same material and design elements.
The building, which is the largest historic courthouse in Texas, is experiencing significant deterioration of the exterior sandstone, granite, and terra cotta. Groundwater levels appear to have changed and begun seeping into the stone foundations.
The restoration project addressed all of the historic fabric that is in danger of loss: restoring exterior stone and terra cotta elements, investigating water damage, cleaning, pigeon control, and repairing and replacing custom iron railings.
The exterior restoration phase was completed in April 2003.
Before and After Restoration