Friday, January 30, 2009

Cleburne, Texas

This photograph was taken in the latter part of the 1800's, and shows the market square in Cleburne, Texas. I am not sure what event brought the crowd to town. I can say that it looks like parking lots have become much more organized these days than back in the day of this picture.


  1. Well, I guess it would have been hard to keep the horses lined up between the white lines!!

    And who (if anyone) cleaned up the all the horse poop?

    I wonder it smelled like there!!!

    We still have mounted police here in Providence RI, the horses are absolutely beautiful. They are always the pride of City Hall.

    In fact, their stables are fancier and much more elaborate than my house!!

  2. I would bet this is a public hanging. The picture was probably taken from the gallows. There is a mention of one on March 20, 1880 where the convicted man had killed his stepmother.

  3. Have hunch that this was an auction. Also, if that's the courthouse in background then photo was taken after 1913 as records show that the Johnson County Courthouse was built in 1913. By-the-way, I was in Cleburne 2 weeks ago & that is a beautiful courthouse.

  4. I think they're auctioning
    There are a great many of
    them in the photo, and the
    men to the left are facing
    away from the camera, towards
    a central point just below
    the men sitting on the roof.
    This could be the auction

  5. I also think this was a horse auction...hangings were family events in those days and I don't see that many women in the crowd.

  6. I believe that to be the Hill County Courthouse in Hillsboro, TX. It was erected in 1890.
    And yes, I agree about the horse auction.

  7. w0w… there was a WalMart back then.

  8. I tend to agree with you Stray. Except, it could also be the courthouse in Weatherford or Granbury, which are both about the same distance from Cleburne as Hillsboro.
    I live in Cleburne and that's not our courthouse. But the others mentioned all look the same, as do many of the County Courthouses in this part of Texas.
    Also, the anonymous post regarding the date is correct. 1913 is engraved in the concrete above the entrances to the courthouse. It was however, over the last year or so, updated. Gutted and rebuilt inside.
    No info about the auction, but Cleburne is well known for its history with the Railroad. We still have a "large" hub that is a switching station from points south to Dallas or Ft Worth.

  9. That's the Cleburne courthouse. It burned down and was replaced with the newer Frank Lloyd Wright design in 1912.

  10. This was an auction in Cleburne. You can see the men sitting on top of the 1st building. The auctioneer was near that 1st building if I'm correct. This was what was called the "wagon yards" I believe and they may have been auctioning wagons and horses. That was the original Courthouse that did burn down April 15, 1912. The white building in front of it was the post office. It is still there but is now the City Hall. One of my favorite pictures of old Cleburne.

  11. I feel the need to say this about the courthouse, that is the Cleburne courthouse it's just before it burned down. The courthouse we currently have was built in 1913 because that one burned down.


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