180 of 254 Jeff Davis County Courthouse, Fort Davis, Texas. County Population: 2,342
"Jeff Davis County comprises 2,258 square miles, varying from mountainous to nearly level, with elevations ranging from 3,800 to 8,378 feet above sea level; the latter, at the top of Mount Livermore, is the fifth highest elevation in the state.
"Jeff Davis County is best known for the Davis Mountains, the highest mountain range located entirely within the state of Texas.
"On October 3, 1854, Lt. Col. Washington Seawell and troops of the Eighth United States Infantry arrived at Limpia Creek from Fort Ringgold, in Starr County. Four days later they reached Painted Comanche Camp, where they set about building a military post at a site selected by Gen. Persifor F. Smith. On October 23 the order establishing Fort Davis, named for Secretary of War Jefferson Davis, was issued.
"On May 12, 1871, [Presidio County] was organized, with Fort Davis as the county seat. The residents of Marfa thought that their town, which was on the railroad, should be the county seat. A new election was held on July 14, 1885 [and Marfa became the Presidio County seat]. The residents of Fort Davis immediately called for a new county, and on March 15, 1887, an act of the state legislature established Jeff Davis County [with Fort Davis as the new county seat].
Martin Donell Kohout, "JEFF DAVIS COUNTY," Handbook of Texas Online
I visited Jeff Davis County and photographed the courthouse in Fort Davis on Saturday, March 23 and Sunday, March 24, 2013.
Jeff Davis County Courthouse 1910
"On May 30, 1910, the Commissioners Court met with Dallas architect L. (Leslie) L. Thurmon. A Louisiana native who had also spent time in Georgia, Thurmon practiced out of Dallas from approximately 1910-1915, during which time he designed several county courthouses in Texas. Before being commissioned by Jeff Davis County, Thurmon had already designed courthouses for Mason (1909-10) and Kinney (1910) counties, and he went on to design courthouses for Floyd County (1911), and Franklin County (1912).
"All of Thurmon's courthouses were in a similar Classical Revival style with
monumental porticoes and central domed cupolas.
"The 3-story stone and concrete courthouse has a rectangular plan, projecting entrance porticoes and a prominent cupola that serves as a
clock tower. The building reflects a simplified classicism evident in projecting 2-story Doric porticoes that dominate the north and south elevations, an unadorned pediment, full entablature with strong cornice-line, and a symmetrical rectangular plan." From the National Register narrative
Fort Davis is one of only two towns in Texas to serve as the seat of two different counties, in this case, Presidio and Jeff Davis. The other town to serve as seat of two Texas counties is Jefferson, current seat of Marion County. Jefferson was also the original seat of Cass County.