The Old Jail Museum
208 N. Crockett St, Granbury, TX 76048
The first Hood County jail was a log cabin built near the Brazos River. Not only was the cabin becoming inadequate by the late Nineteenth century, but it was decided that a place needed to be built providing for the possibility of local executions, if necessary. The one legal execution in Hood County was a 1875 hanging of an elderly man over a court decision involving a land dispute. Built in 1885 and operated as the Hood County Jail from 1886 to 1978, this building served as the only jail for both city and county prisoners. Texas law was eventually changed that all capital punishment would be carried out by the state in a centralized location, so no gallows were ever erected and the large open room was used as a meeting place for the prisoners and their attorneys.
The first floor contains four rooms and a bathroom intended as the Sheriff's living quarters. Throughout the years, records indicate that Sheriffs, City Marshals, or Deputies actually lived downstairs, depending on the needs of the individuals. The Second floor has three rooms; the gallows, the single cell (used for women and the insane), and the main cell. The main cell has within it a freestanding iron "cage" designed as 2 cells with up to 4 beds per cell. Within the cage and outside the cells is a common toilet and wash basin. Behind the jail building is the kitchen, where the wife of the resident official would cook the inmates meals, a required 2 per day in the early years. The space between the kitchen and the jail was later closed in.
Although the building was state of the art when it
was built (it had plumbing on both floors!), hard use and lack of
funds allowed the building to fall into disrepair. Several offices
like city police, county sheriff, and eventually DPS, including
dispatch, moved into the lower floor. Long before the Brazos River
was dammed in the 1970s and Lake Granbury was
The President of the Hood County Museum, Inc. (the body responsible for the Old Jail Museum) is Karen Nace, and she can be contacted by phone at (817) 573-5135 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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This site was constructed by Andrea Sutton for the Hood County Historical Society