Historic Courthouse

We pride ourselves on the fascinating events that have happened over the years. Learn more about our historic courthouse over the years.

Fact one

The courthouse is actually the 4th courthouse erected by Wise County to serve as the center of county government. The two previous courthouses burned before.

Fact Two

Decatur’s community thought that the building price of the courthouse was outrageous to the point that no city officials were re-elected that year.

Fact Three

The courthouse has a twin building in the city of Waxahachie, but the Decatur courthouse is made from solid pink granite and Vermont marble.

Waggoner Sauder Ranching History

Since the early 1900’s, with over 12,000 acres, this historic ranch has been a staple in the Texas ranching community with more history than meets the eye.

texas tourist camp complex

Notorious for garnering passing eyes including mobster couple, Bonnie and Clyde, the petrified covered station, cabins, and cafe are all tokens of the 1920’s era. Visit in the spring to catch a glimpse of a river of poppy flowers covering the block.

Wise County Heritage Museum

The Decatur Baptist College, also known as the world’s oldest junior college, was donated to the Wise County Historical Society, Inc. to be transformed into a stunning museum featuring the historical relics of the local community.

“Eighter From Decatur” saying

Known as the infamous slogan for Decatur from the late 1800s, Eighter from Decatur initially started out as, “Ada from Decatur”. Will Cooper, a laborer and worker of odd jobs around town grew up with a love of rolling dice and for a local servant girl named Ada. For his ‘lucky point’, Will would often say, “Ada from Decatur, County Seat of Wise” which soon turned into a popular saying in the local area. ????

LBJ Grasslands

Lyndon B. Johnson National Grassland is part of the national grasslands, located in the stunning Great Plains of the northern part North Texas.

Founding of Decatur on Chisholm Trail

Decatur marked one of the locations that represented passageway to Northern Territory – where beef was at a higher price.
(US 380, E of Decatur, Decatur, TX, USA)

Historic Sites

Battle of the Knobs

The mounds in the Texas landscape represents a memorial to the lives that were lost at the battle.

campsite of Jesse James

Visit the campsites of Jesse and Frank James, notable gunslingers in the wild west.

Old Stone Prison

Marked as the first stone house built in Decatur for policemen, the house was erected from the hands of prisoners and turned the basement into a jailhouse.

Meridian Highway

This route was used as a passageway between the north and south territories – including the movement of cattle during the northern markets high demand for meat. The highway slices the United States directly in half, being one of the most significant highways to date.

Historical Landmarks

See how the history of Decatur has been preserved since the inception.

wise county reunion

The oldest reoccurring event in Wise County features generations of Confederate veteran’s and locals sharing memories after a long battle.
(SH 51, Decatur, TX, USA)


The stunning story of a family pioneering their way through the war as their incredible trade is seen all over the U.S.

Wise County Poor Farm & Cemetery

The 320 acre ranch began as a place where convicts could go to work out fines. This area is now the home to a cemetery, where inmates are buried.

Sam Woody’s Cabin

Decatur’s first residency cabin, moved from the Deep Creek area to the Decatur History Museum, was built in a day, made from wood, grasses and mud.