The Campaign For DA

1.08.2015

I Wish Wise County Could Get Funding To Do This

Bexar County in San Antonio has renovated its old historic courtroom

The outside of the Wise County Courthouse is majestic.  I can't tell you the number of out-of-towners from over the years I've seen who have stopped to photograph it.

But inside, it's kind of a dump.  Every nook and cranny is occupied with some kind of office. And wires (some properly encased and others not) run along the outside of the walls because those walls aren't made up of two by fours and sheetrock.

The district courtroom we have is what I would want restored.  I've heard that up until around 1950 or so, it had a circular balcony much like To Kill a Mockingbird. Then a ceiling was put on it and a second courtroom was built on top of it. Obviously, the balcony was removed. It takes a lot of imagination these days to try to picture the way it once was.

Crazy note: I have never seen one single photograph of the courtroom as it used to exist. And I've talked to a ton of folks over the years who are interested in Wise County history that have never seen one as well.  That's pretty amazing.


19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Waste of Tax payers money.
All so a few employees can feel more at home while your clientele live in mobile homes.

Anonymous said...

Navarro County is in the middle of restoring their courthouse, and the county gub'mint has really screwed up the process. More than once they almost lost the matching funds by the state that would be required to be able to afford it. It got to where the courthouse was in such bad shape that the phones were cutting out and the plumbing caving in on a regular basis. Those are good reasons for a remodel alone, but it should never have gotten into that shape in the first place. Add to that all the boneheads that wanted to tear it down, and it was a political mess.

Anonymous said...

Barry, careful there. Those balconies were put in the courtrooms for the "Negros and Women" to occupy. You put those balconies back and the majority of your readers will want to return to that practice. I would rather not give them the option.

Anonymous said...

Not a good use of tax money.The tax money should be donated to Barry so he can have a nicer office.The man wears a suit every day he needs to have a nice place to hang his jacket.

Anonymous said...

1:24 PM

What the hell is a Negro?

Anonymous said...

Negro is a brand of black people.

Candance said...

I got lost trying to find the bathroom in the Wise County courthouse and the same guy who helped me find it had to help me find my way out of the courthouse because I got lost coming out of the bathroom, so I've covered a lot of ground in that particular location. It did seem to have a lot of offices now that I think about it.

Anonymous said...

The inside is a dump, and so are some of the people who work out of there.So what's the big deal. They should feel right at home.

Anonymous said...

We're happy with the ways things are. Don't change a thing.

DF The Wise County Courthouse Crabs

Anonymous said...

Since the courthouse is a historical site, I wander if that is even possible to restore it back. It takes a mountain of paperwork to change any minor thing in there.

Anonymous said...

Barry, if you are SERIOUS about this, contact the Wise County Historical Society and get them behind it - then you will face the Commissioner's Court to approve, the State Historical Committee to approve, etc. etc. etc......yep, the red tape, buddy. And in these days of "get things quick", it ain't gonna work, plus, the old jury box had spittoons beside them. Want all of that again?...........allow yourself PLENTY of free time to pursue this...........

It is my understanding that the outside of our courthouse cannot be CHANGED, but the inside can.

Better think about the future rather than the past, Barry, though it is a sweet idea.

sparkerr said...

I agree. I would love to see the inside of the courthouse refurbished.

After seeing the beautiful outside of the building, it is a real letdown going inside.

And yes, a great place to start would be the courtroom.

Anonymous said...

Likely the District Courtroom could be restored, but don't think it would be EXACTLY like it was. It is likely that the Wise County Historical Society may have the original courthouse plans that J. Riley Gordon (architect from New York) designed. History says it was quite a stink from the leaders of that time just to get the courthouse. It would likely cause a stink of huge proportions to do major renovations today.

Ok, Barry start working on the commissioners court and the new judge.

Prepare for battle!

Anonymous said...

Wise County outgrew that building a long time ago. We need new, modern, functionally efficient buildings capable of handling the volume of business we are projected to do in the future. That old building needs to be turned into an annex or a museum.

How many of you old people are going to have to die before we get to make this decision?

Anonymous said...

Make it happen, B.G. I can think of no one better to do this. I'm actually serious. No one in Wise County has the media know-how and Knows The Territory like you do.

Don't be afraid to be somebody.

(By the way, Denton County did AWESOME things with their courthouse, inside and out. It still sees the odd court, and the county commissioner's court meets in the restored courtroom every week. You should visit the Courthouse On The Square there.)

Anonymous said...

Ok, smart person 8:12

New Building - higher taxes

Your comment about OLD people is stupid. You'll get there buddy and be one of the worst patients in a nursing home.

Anonymous said...

10:45, it may have been a dumb comment, but he's right about needing to get ahead of the curve on a new courthouse and such. Wise County is where Denton County was 25 years ago, pretty much, and Denton got a new courthouse almost 40 years ago. County taxes wouldn't be impacted that much by a new courthouse, and the county could function as it ought to. We'll be due another county court and likely another district court before too awful long.

Compared to the cost of paying the manpower that works for the county, a courthouse is small potatoes. And people are flocking to Wise County. Property values are already skyrocketing. USE that revenue.

Anonymous said...

I agree with 10:30 - it does take a stem winder to start a project. Think Commissioner Burns might get on the bandwagon for restoration. Start gathering up the interest from well known Wise County history buffs, especially those in Decatur, and give Rosalie Gregg and Kerry Clower a call. It can happen and you can be the shining star to get the ball rolling, Barry. And it wouldn't be a surprise that the Texas Historical Commission might have some grants available!

Anonymous said...

Well, 3:29, remember DENTON COUNTY is all REPUBLICAN. They have the money. Since this county is all Republican LED now, what's the problem? We can have the courtroom renovation AND a brand new building for those who are cramped up in the Wise County Courthouse.

And why don't YOU run for a public office in this county, since you seem to know how to well manage revenue?