3.8
4 votes

Cursed Courthouse Clock

414 St. Joseph Street, Gonzales, Texas 78629 USA

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“on the Gonzalez County Courthouse”

The courthouse clock became an obsession of one Albert Howard, and for good reason, because for him it was the instrument of measure of the remainder of his life.  Found guilty of a capital offense and, in January 1921, condemned to die, Albert spent the weeks before his execution incarcerated in the county jail (built from 1885 to 1887) near the courthouse. Albert had had at least one prior scrape with the law before this one. The Gonzales Inquirer of October 27, 1920, reported Albert's escape from jail, as well as his recapture and re-confinement (in the issues of November 2 and 24). Howard bided his time denying his guilt and obsessing on the courthouse clock, vowing that if he were executed it would be the clock that would indicate his innocence. The fateful day, March 18, 1921, arrived, and Albert was led up the steps of the gallows inside the jail. Before he trod the thirteenth step to his destiny Albert shook his fists at the towering timepiece vowing that it would never again count down the remainder of another's life. Albert's was the last execution in the county, and for years subsequent to it, legend holds, the faces of the old Seth Thomas clock rarely gave the same time, and several times over the years the tower has been struck by lightning, damaging the clock. In the 1990's, a resident of Gonzales, Henry Christian, contributed time and money ($11,000) for the repair of the clock. Later, that same decade the clock was removed and given a complete renovation before reinstallation. The legend persists, however, that the faces are still to this day frequently out of synchronization. Has the spirit of Albert Howard afflicted the courthouse clock? Does his curse continue?

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Reviewed by
ZordanSchwartz

  • 1 Review
  • 0 Helpful
August 10, 2014
Rated 4.0

Beautiful building on the way to the coast. The history is interesting and the jail is still being used as a jail but is also a gift shop. Amazing.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
joaquin.alayola

  • 1 Review
  • 0 Helpful
August 08, 2014
Rated 3.0

Impressive building to look at, sadly we were just driving thru and only stopped to take a picture outside.

1 person found this review helpful

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Cursed Courthouse Clock

414 St. Joseph Street
Gonzales, Texas
78629 USA

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