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SOMERVELL COUNTY, TEXAS

Somervell County Topics

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  • Somervell County TX

    Somervell County History

    by Sam Fenstermacher
    Around 1860 Charles and Juana Barnard built a three story stone gristmill along the Paluxy River. The town that eventually grew around the mill was called Barnard's Mill. In 1871 T.C. Jordan, bought the mill and surrounding land from Charles Barnard.Mrs. T.C. Jordan called the area around Barnard's Mill Rose Glen as a reminder of her native Scotland. Years later the town's people voted to rename the town Glen Rose.

    The county of Somervell was formed in 1875 from about 200 square miles of land perviously part of Hood County. The county name honors Lieutenant-Colonel Alexander Somervell.

    By 1876 the town population grew sufficiently that T.C. Jordan believed the time was ripe to build a town square. Jordan promised to build a county courthouse if some of the town's citizens would buy property around the square. The first courthouse on the square was completed around 1892 and burned down in 1893.

    Second courthouse on the square, the present day structure, was ordered built by the commissioners' court in 1893 and completed late in the same year for a cost of $13,500. This courthouse employed elements of the Romanesque Revival architectural style. The building also featured a mansard roof treatment and ornamental iron crestings which are characteristic of the General Grant style. The courthouse was constructed of locally queried limestone.

    In 1902 a tornado damaged the courthouse and many other buildings on the town square. The courthouse roof and clock tower were severely damaged. At that time, the small rural county didn't have the financial resources to properly repair the roof or replace the clock tower. A modest roof repair was made by local craftsmen which omitted the clock and some of the ornate details of the original roof.

    In 1986 the Somervell County Commissioners' Court voted to restore the county courthouse. The work was completed by Ray J. Miller Construction Company of Meridian under the direction of architects Huckabee and Donham of Stephenville, Texas. Final cost of restoring the building was $601,111.20.
    © Sam Fenstermacher

    Somervell County Courthouse
    Texas Somervell County Courthouse
    Photo courtesy William Beauchamp

    Somervell County Town List

    Cities, Towns & Ghost Towns: History, attractions, landmarks, architecture, monuments, museums, cemeteries, bridges, parks, vintage & contemporary images, area destinations, hotels, and forum.

    County Seat - Glen Rose

    Book Hotel Here - Glen Rose Hotels
  • Glen Rose County seat
  • Hopewell ghost town
  • Lanham Mill Community ghost town
  • Nemo
  • Rainbow
  • TX Somervell County 1920s Map
    Somervell & Hood County 1907 Postal Map
    Courtesy Texas General Land Office
    TX Somervell County 1920s Map
    Somervell & Hood County 1920s Map
    Courtesy Texas General Land Office
    TX Somervell County 1940s Map
    Somervell & Hood County 1940s Map
    Courtesy Texas General Land Office
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