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Jim Wells County TX
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Texas | Architecture | Courthouses

JIM WELLS COUNTY COURTHOUSE
County Seat - Alice, Texas

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Jim Wells County Courthouse, Alice TX
Jim Wells County Courthouse
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, July 2010

Jim Wells County Courthouse c. 1912

The first and only courthouse they ever had.
Built by Atlee Ayers in the Texas Renaissance style.

[See Jim Wells County Courthouse Historical Marker]

For a time, the San Antonio architect designed courthouses exclusively. Refugio, Kingsville and Brownsville all have Ayers courthouses.

Photographer's Note:
"Large additions to either side in 1948 changed the appearance of the building and destroyed some of its original features." - Terry Jeanson

Historical Marker:

Jim Wells County Courthouse

Governor Oscar B. Colquitt signed legislation creating Jim Wells County on March 11, 1911. Taken from territory formerly a part of Nueces County, the new county was named for prominent Brownsville attorney and business leader James B. Wells, Jr. (1850-1923). The first county elections were held two months later, and in January 1912 the citizens of the new county approved a bond election to finance the construction of a courthouse and jail.

The county commissioners hired San Antonio architect Atlee B. Ayers to design the courthouse. The laying of the cornerstone on July 25, 1912, drew a crowd of more than 2,000 people. Celebration activities included performances by the Alice Concert Band and the Alice Symphony Club, as well as a barbecue, rodeo events, and baseball game.

The discovery of oil in Jim Wells County in 1938 led to increased economic development and a population boom. The courthouse was remodeled in 1948-1949, and annexes later were built nearby.

Although its original appearance has been altered, the Jim Wells County Courthouse stands as a significant structure in the county's history. It continues to serve as the center of county government.
(1992)
Jim Wells County Courthouse, Alice, Texas 1939 old photo
Jim Wells County Courthouse as it appeared in 1939
Photo courtesy TXDoT
Jim Wells County Courthouse, Alice, Texas vintage photo
Early view of the Jim Wells County Courthouse
Photo circa 1930s or 40s,

courtesy texasoldphotos.com
Jim Wells County Courthouse, Alice, Texas
Jim Wells County Courthouse
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, July 2010
Alice TX Post Office Mural: South Texas Panarama  detail: main street, homestead, courthouse, churches
The 1939 Alice post office mural showing Jim Wells County Courthouse
Photo courtesy Ken Rudine June 2009
Alice, Texas  - Jim Wells County Courthouse Tower
The top of the Jim Wells County Courthouse
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, July 2010
Alice, Texas  - Jim Wells County Courthouse Entrance

Jim Wells County Courthouse
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, July 2010

Alice, TX - Jim Wells County Courthouse
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, July 2010
Jim Wells County Courthouse historical marker, Alice, Texas
Jim Wells County Courthouse historical marker
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, November, 2004
Alice, Texas  - Jim Wells County Courthouse cornerstone
Jim Wells County Courthouse cornerstone
Photo courtesy Terry Jeanson, July 2010

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