Press Release
From the Office of State Senator Craig Estes, District 30

For Immediate Release
October 29, 2002
Contact: Lindsey Mask
Phone: (512) 463-0130

Senator Craig Estes Announces Courthouse Grant

WICHITA FALLS, Texas - Senator Craig Estes (R- Wichita Falls) announced today that the Texas Historical Commission (THC) had granted Donley County, in Clarendon, another $185,000.00 to help with the historic restoration of the Donley County Courthouse. The County's restoration project which began in October 2001 hit a roadblock earlier this spring when it was discovered that the 110-year old bricks concealed behind the eaves cornice had deteriorated beyond ordinary repair. The supplemental THC grant will be used to rebuild the damaged areas so that the reconstruction of the courthouse roof can proceed.

"I know that Donley County is extremely grateful for this supplemental THC assistance" said Sen. Estes. "This additional funding will allow the County to properly complete the restoration of this remarkable, distinguished courthouse so that it will be able to stand and serve the public for yet another 110 years."

The THC awarded Donley County an initial grant of $2,891,408 in Round I of the Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program in May 2000. Architects C.H. Bulger and Isaac Hamilton Rapp of Trinidad, Co., designed the historic 1891 courthouse. It is the oldest operating courthouse in the Texas Panhandle. Between 1936 and 1937, much of the building's third floor, including the towers, turrets and decorative roof elements, had to be removed. Donley County is fully restoring the courthouse, including the third floor, to its original appearance.

The Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program was established in 1999 by Gov. George W. Bush and the Texas Legislature to restore Texas' county courthouses to their original splendor and make them safe, functional and a source of pride for Texas communities. The Texas Historical Commission created and administers the $100 million program. To date, four Panhandle counties have received grant funding assistance through the program.

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