The retired Jasper County Jail is unique in its placement. Often, you will see jails that had been built somehow in junction with the courthhouse – convience, it nothing else. But most were either attached as a wing, put on the upper floor – or in a wing, or set off on the corner of the square. This jail was built directly in front of one of the main entrances. So that when you try to view the courthouse from the south – you see the jail instead.
While this former lockup isn’t real historic – it is vintage 1930’s and has been replaced. The 1904 jail…”was followed in 1935 by a WPA detention center, a product of the Depression years. The barred windows from the 1904 jail were recycled into the new keep by the cost-conscios builder. Designed by W. C. Measor and located on the courthouse square, the structure had three floors, The ground level had a unique drive-through arrangement: A prisoner could be brought in and unloaded behind locked gates.”* It was replaced in 1988 and now serves as the county archives.
*”Wanted: Historic County Jails of Texas” by Ed Blackburn, Jr., published by Texas A&M University Press, College Station, TX, 2006