In 1890, the construction of a courthouse (the 6th in Dallas and the 5th at this location) was begun at Main and Houston Streets. It was designed by M. A. Orlopp in the Romanesque style (I guess that is why it has turets) and originally had a clock tower. It was constructed of iron, brick and red sandstone so that it would be fireproof. It was finished about 1893.
In 1919, the clock tower, which rivaled Big Ben, was removed because it was feared that the winds had made it unstable. By 1938, there were some people who thought the building had become obsolete and it should be torn down.
It is now one of the oldest buildings in downtown Dallas-very different from most of the modern architecture, and is being restored as a historic landmark. The ambitious goal is to have at least one courtroom as it was originally and to put the clock tower and grand staircase back in place.
Old Red is currently (2004)serving as a visitor's center (as the courthouse has been moved to a more modern building) and is to house the Old Red Museum of Dallas County History & Culture. My daughter and SIL have been, but we have not
The only really good place to photograph the building is the Reunion Tower.
One of the landmarks of downtown Dallas is the unusual design of the Old Red Courthouse.
It was built in 1892 of rough-cut, red pecos sandstone and trimmed in Arkansas blue granite.
This was the 5th courthouse built on this
site and today you can find the Vicitor Information Centre on the ground level.
There is a high tech Internet Café housed in one of the turrets. The building has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a City of Dallas Landmark and a Recorded Texas Historical Landmark.
Open Hours: 9am-6pm Sun-Fri;
Old Red Courthouse is a really unique looking building which stands out amongst the glass and steel of the rest of the city. It was built in 1892 of red sandstone and is one of the city’s oldest structures.
The Dallas Visitors Centre is also in this building so its a great stop off to get your brochures and info.