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County
Caldwell
Region
Praries & Lakes
Population
2010 Census - 12,698
2000 Census - 11,615
Nearby
Towns
Lockhart, Texas
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Lockhart Texas History:
In 1831, Byrd Lockhart received land from the Mexican government as a partial payment for his surveying work. The land later became the site of Lockhart which was named after him. Before the 1840 Battle of Plum Creek, settlement in the area was limited due to Comanche raids. In March 1840, thirty-five Penateak Comanche leaders and warriors, 3 women and 2 children were killed by Texas troops at San Antonio in the Council House Fight. During the Great Raid of 1840, Comanches swept down the Guadalupe Valley, killing settlers, stealing horses and plundering and burning settlements. After destroying Linnville in Calhoun County, they began to retreat. The Texans organized a volunteer army under Gen. Felix Huston, Col. Edward Burleson and Capt. Mathew Caldwell, and with assistance from the Texas Rangersunder Ben McCulloch overtook the Indians at Plum Creek in the vicinity of the present town of Lockhart on August 11, 1840. The following day in the Battle of Plum Creek, the Texans soundly defeated the Comanches, causing the Comanches to move westward. By the mid-1840s several families had settled near Lockhart Springs. In 1848, Lockhart became the county seat of the newly formed Caldwell County. The Plum Creek post office was transferred to Lockhart. The town incorporated in 1852. By the mid-1880s Lockhart had a newspaper, the Lockhart Academy, a Masonic lodge, and at least 5 churches. By 1858, the town had 423 residents. In the early 1870s Lockhart became staging area for the starting point of the Chisholm Trail and developed into a regional trading center. Beginning in 1874, Lockhart’s growth was slowed due to the arrival of the arrival of the Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio Railway 14 miles south of town and the subsequent establishment of Luling on the railroad line. Lockhart became more competitive as a trading center in 1887 when the Lockhart-San Marcos section of the Missouri, Kansas and Texas rail line was completed. By 1890, Lockhart had electricity, a waterworks, streetcars, four schools, seven churches, a national bank and 1,233 residents. In 1889, Lockhart received two more railroad lines which connected the town to Shiner and Smithville. These connections enabled Lockhart to become an important regional cotton processing center. In the late 1890s, Dr. Eugene Clark willed funds to establish the Dr. Eugene Clark (public) Library, now the oldest continuously operating library in Texas. Lockhart is known for its great BBQ restaurants. It is estimated that over 5,000 visitors come to Lockhart each week for the BBQ. Kreuz’s Market was established in 1900. The other two outstanding BBQ restaurants are Blacks and Smitty’s. The Texas legislature named Lockhart “The Barbecue Capital of Texas.” Lockhart is located at the intersection of U.S. 183 and SH 142, 67 miles northeast of San Antonio, 36 miles northeast of New Braunfels, 36.6 miles northeast of Seguin, 18 miles east of San Marcos, 29 miles slightly southeast of Austin, 34 miles southwest of Bastrop, 47 miles southwest of Smithville, 76 miles west of La Grange, 14.5 miles north of Luling, 22.8 miles northwest of Ottine and Palmetto State Park, and 32.6 miles northwest of Gonzales, Texas.
 
Caldwell County Courthouse, 1894:
This beautiful courthouse was designed in Second Empire style by architect Henry E.M. Guidon, though most attribute its design to famous courthouse architect Alfred Giles. It was constructed out of Muldoon blue sandstone from Muldoon, Texas, and features Pecos red sandstone trimming. A four-sided Seth Thomas clock is located in the central tower. The cornerstone was laid on August 15, 1893, and the building was completed in March, 1894 at a cost of $65,000. The courthouse remodeling was completed in 2000. The courthouse is a Texas Historical Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The 2010 Caldwell County census was 38,066. 110 S. Main Street, Lockhart, Texas 78644. It is located in the center of the Historical blocks. (512) 398-1828. 110 S. Main Street. 
 
Caldwell County Jail, 1908-1909:
The jail represents a rare example of the Norman castellated style of architecture. Located on the former site of the county's first log jail (1855-1858), this five-story red brick structure contains nine main cells on the upper three floors. Each cell is divided into smaller compartments. The jail’s basement was used for storage and the ground floor housed the County Sheriff and his family. The jail cost $25,000 to build. The jail now houses the Caldwell County Museum. Open Sat-Sun, 1pm-5pm. 315 East Market Street.