I woke up early this morning anticipating my ride to Lufkin, to take pictures of the Angelina County Courthouse. I could hear the wind blowing outside and knew it was going to be a ride that requires extra attention and control from the gust and crosswinds I would encounter. Interesting when riding in strong winds, they seem to come at you from all directions and offer no opportunity to relax. That aside, the sun was bright, the temperatures 60 to 70, and the traffic was relatively light.
Lufkin is about 1 ½ hours from Coldspring. The most direct route is right up US-59, and the less direct return on the more scenic route, Texas 94 back through Apple Springs, Groveton, Sebastopol and Onalaska.
Before leaving I did some internet research and to my surprise found almost nothing about the Angelina County Courthouse. It wasn’t even called a “courthouse” when I found it on my maps app, instead it was called “The Court of Law”. When I pulled into the parking lot it was a disappointing sight. Not exciting to look at and a 1955 statement of a “politically correct” building. However, the more research I do the more interesting Angelina County becomes.
More than any other structure, a courthouse is the most endearing symbol of a county’s history in Texas. And they’re usually among the most imposing buildings in the county seat. But in the l950s, many Texas counties threw aside history, tradition and elegance and replaced some of our finest courthouses with modern buildings–many of them with little character or appeal.”
I copied the above statement from the TexasEscapes.com website. It captured my thoughts when standing in front of the existing courthouse. The article was written by Bob Bowman, a local Angelina County historian. I encourage you to read the article. It tells about James R. Gordon, the man responsible for the designs of eighteen Texas courthouses.
Here’s a picture of the old courthouse that was replaced with the box in 1955.
Picture is also from TexasEscapes.com. Thanks to them, again.
…and here’s the current jewel of Angelina County.
#19 Angelina County Courthouse, Lufkin, Texas
The Angelina County Courthouse in Lufkin, Texas, was built in 1955, the look of the building was dramatically altered in 1962, but no where can I find what was altered. There was no typical marker from the Texas Historical Commission. Guess they couldn’t find enough information to put up a sign.
Standing in the parking lot and looking across the street at the other structures I noticed a hollow storefront with a board across the opening that read, “Courthouse Barber Shop and Courthouse Drug Store.” Looks like they been closed since the new courthouse was built. Wish I’d got a picture, but missed the opportunity, sorry.
There was another sight I did not expect to see in downtown Lufkin, the US Courthouse. Interesting it has more charm and appeal then the Court of Law building. I had to move the bike, but got this picture.
Thanks for following along. I’ll be on the road next week. Going to Prescott, Wisconsin to pick up another sidecar rig to put in the stable. I’ll post pictures of it when I get back.