One of the oldest buildings in tiny Menard, TX, is now for sale. It’ll take a buyer on the hunt for a unique living situation to lock in a deal.
“It’s really one of the first properties that was built in Menard,” says the listing agent, Will Dupuy.
The town founders, he says, originally organized the county court under a live oak tree, and then built this courthouse and county jail in 1871.
The two-story limestone building, smack-dab in the center of the Lone Star state, served as the courthouse and jail until the late 1880s. Nowadays, it’s a fabulous private residence in the center of the tiny downtown area.
“The first floor had a store in the front with a jail in the back. The second floor, which was only accessed by an outside stairway on the west wall, was the courtroom,” Dupuy explains. “Behind the courtroom, there was a trap door to basically a dungeon-type cell below.”
Prisoners could get in or out of the cell only if someone lowered a ladder into it. Dupuy says he doesn’t know if the cell is still there.
The seller has lived in the property for a couple of years, but did not convert it into the current one-bedroom residence.
It is rustic and sturdy, and stone, metal, and wood make up much of the interior.
“It was built before insulation, so it is literally the same stone on the outside as it is on the inside,” Dupuy says.
The single bedroom is a loft-style affair and sits right above the lovely kitchen.
“It’s got these super-high ceilings and is very spacious. It definitely feels like old-time Texas,” the agent says of the interior. “It feels as historic as it looks, and you feel like you’re stepping back in time.”
Just a few yards away from the backyard sits the San Saba River. The Presidio de San Saba, a fortress built in 1757, is a short distance away, as are the many wineries and distilleries of the Texas hill country.
“I could see it being readapted to maybe a tasting room for a winery or a storefront for a distillery, because the hill country is kind of like Texas’ version of Napa,” Dupuy says.
Whether it’s a place for imbibing or not, this historic building presents an intriguing opportunity in an area that may be poised for a rebound.
“The attraction of Menard is it is still relatively economically depressed, and it hasn’t been redone as much as some cities like Mason or Fredericksburg. It’s kind of a good place to invest in if you want to live in the hill country, because it’s still relatively affordable,” Dupuy says. “Menard is one of the outliers. If you were looking to invest in a place that is probably going to be redeveloped in the next 10 to 15 years, this would be a prime spot.”
The post Former Jail in Texas Awaits a Buyer Looking To Lock In a Sweet Deal appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®.