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Fayette County Court House
Fayette County is a county located in the U.S. state of
Texas. Its county seat is La Grange. The Second Congress of the
Republic of Texas authorized the organization of Fayette County on
December 14, 1837." The petition presented by Judge James Lester,
Andrew Rabb, and John Moore, requested that the district near the
dividing line between the counties of Bastrop and Colorado be formed
into a county to be know as Fayette in honor of the Marquis de La
Fayette, who had so materially aided the American Colonist earlier in
their struggle for independence".
About 1890, the structural safety of Fayette County's third
courthouse came into question, and plans began for the building of
this structure to serve as the seat of justice for the county. The
commissioner’s court hired San Antonio architect James Riely Gordon
(1863-1937) to design the new courthouse and oversee the construction.
Gordon, who was 27 years old at the time, went on to become a noted
architect of public buildings in Texas. Funding for the 1890-91 court
house came from the sale of $90,000 in bonds. Martin, Byrnes and
Johnston of Colorado City served as building contractors. Gordon
designed the courthouse in the Romanesque Revival style and specified
four types of native Texas stone to detail the exterior: Blue Muldoon
sandstone, Belton White limestone, Pecos Red sandstone and Pink Burnet
granite. A central open atrium, designed to promote good lighting and
natural ventilation, highlighted the interior space. The extensive use
of stone, along with the massive arched windows and doorways,
exemplify the building's Romanesque Revival influences. The oldest
existing J. Riely Gordon courthouse in Texas, the Fayette County
courthouse was completed in 1891. It has served as a setting for
social events, celebrations, courtroom dramas and political oratory,
and continues as a center of politics and government for the county.
Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 2001"
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