The town of Brazoria dates back to 1828 - the year it was platted.
It served briefly as the first Capital of the Republic of Texas -
since it was the only town with (barely) sufficient accommodations
for the legislators.
The county was organized in 1836 and a wooden building was the
first courthouse. The artifacts on this page are from the J. Riely
Gordon courthouse of 1894. The postcard above shows similarities to
Gordon's Ellis, Wise and
Fayette County courthouses.
Angleton was Brazoria's rival for the county seat and Angleton
had the advantage of having a railroad. The citizens of Brazoria
hired J. Riely Gordon to build a courthouse - which cost a reported
$90,000. The idea that was - with such a fine, attention-getting
courthouse - Brazoria would retain it's status as county seat.
But, in 1896 Angleton was voted in as county seat and the huge
courthouse at Brazoria wasn't needed.
courthouse was constructed at Angleton in 1897 by another famous
courthouse architect - Eugene Heiner. The new courthouse featured a
90 - foot tower that was later removed.
The 1940 building was a WPA courthouse - a rather plain building -
but with some nice Art-Deco detail. Designed by Wyatt Hedrick.
History of Brazoria County
Brazoria County became part of the Victoria
district when Austin's original San Felipe district was
divided in two in 1826. In 1832 the legislature of Coahuila
separated Brazoria Municipality from San Felipe and made
Brazoria its capital. On March 1, 1835, a meeting near
Brazoria led to the establishment of the first Masonic lodge
in Texas, Holland Lodge No. 36.
When Stephen F. Austin declared against Santa
Anna at a meeting in Brazoria on September 8, 1835, Texans
began to prepare for a revolution. Agitation for
independence led to the formation of committees of public
safety and public meetings to discuss the impending break.
After the convention at San Felipe and engagements at
Gonzales, Goliad, and Bexar, volunteer companies were
organized and a provisional government approved on November
13, 1835. Henry Smith of Brazoria County served as the first
provisional governor. Formation of a permanent council soon
thereafter brought the inauguration of mail routes
throughout the area. Rebellion grew in 1835 and 1836,
culminating in the Texas Declaration of Independence.
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