But, I longed to see something "new" so this weekend I rented a lovely pink Chevy Spark (see photo above) from my favorite car rental company, Enterprise, and took off for northeast Texas. By the way, the Spark was very frugal with gasoline, averaging over 32 mpg in 550 miles. On the other hand, it's not exactly a "highway" car. Next time I'll get something a little larger, with more horsepower and a different color...
My first stop was Athens (Texas), the seat of Henderson County. Not to be confused with Henderson, the seat of Rusk County, which is nearby. Henderson County is home to, well I'll let their sign speak for itself:
Athens is also home to this lovely little store, right next to the Henderson County Judicial Complex:
Leaving Athens and the hamburger controversy behind, I drove north to Canton, the seat of Van Zandt County. By the way, my maternal great-grandfather was born in Van Zandt County. Apparently, he realized his mistake early on and moved a few miles south to Henderson County.
Here is the current Van Zandt County courthouse:
However, when a county decides to demolish its courthouse and build a new one they usually keep the old cornerstone for historical purposes. Van Zandt County was no different. Unfortunately, its historic 1896 courthouse was a landmark building designed by the noted Texas architect J. Riely Gordon. Here's the cornerstone on the courthouse grounds, with a lonely eagle that used to grace the tower of the historic courthouse.:
Next, I headed north to Emory, the seat of the fourth smallest (in land area) county in Texas, Rains County. There I found a delightful little courthouse, dating from 1908. It was easily the best looking courthouse I visited this weekend.
The 1955 era courthouse is appropriately sited in downtown Tyler and faces a beautiful park. Alas, the roses were wilting in the upper 90 degree temperatures.