This was our one hundred-seventy-eighth Courthouse in Texas to visit. That means we are at 70.1% of our goal with 29.9 % left to go.

Date – 1883
Architect – Jasper N. Preston and F.E. Ruffini
Style – Renaissance Revival remodeled into Neoclassical
Material – Brick

The current Bastrop County courthouse was built in 1883, although the building doesn’t really look that old. It replaced the two-story 1852 courthouse that burned in January of the same year.

Designed by Austin architect Jasper N. Preston with associate architect Frederick E. Ruffini, the building was built of red brick and stone. The original design of the building included pedimented gables over each entrance, decorative caps on the corner pavilions, and a central clock tower with three tiers. In 1923, the building was “modernized” by C.H. Page and Bros. The original roof and pediments were removed, replaced with a flat roof with parapets on the corners and over the entrances. The clock tower was shortened and a copper cap was added. The entrance porticos were altered and the brick was covered with a yellow-beige colored plaster. The interior was also renovated at this time.

The courthouse now sits among modern annexes to its south and southeast sides with the historic 1891 jail on its west side. Although there have been many changes to the courthouse over the years, it has somehow not lost all of its original character and it continues to serve as the center of the county government. – Terry Jeanson