The Gonzales County Courthouse
Gonzales is the county seat of Gonzales County, Texas, and one of the oldest cities in Texas, founded on .
A major location in the days of the Texas Revolution, Gonzales is considered the "Birthplace of Texas Independence", as it is where the first shot for Texas independence was fired. Not as well known, and certainly not as publicized, as more major arenas in the Texas Revolution, such as the Alamo and San Jacinto, Gonzales is where the first combat of the Revolution took place. Today, however, it is a small town of roughly 6000 people, where time moves at a much slower pace. Similar to most other towns in this part of Texas, Gonzales is unique because of its heritage and the various sites and events that celebrate this heritage.
Driving is the only way into Gonzales. US Highway 183 runs north to south through the city, while US Highway 90 runs east to west. From Austin, take US Hwy 183 due south for about an hour. From San Antonio, follow I-10 east to exit 632(US 183 to Gonzales/Cuero), and drive south on 183 for 15 miles to reach Gonzales. From Houston, follow I-10 west to exit 632, and drive south.
The same means used to get into Gonzales is the best means for getting around Gonzales. The city is small and does not take long to reach the other side of the city.
- Gonzales County Courthouse, 414 St. Joseph St. (At the center of the city, from US A90, drive to St. Joseph St. (Business US 183) intersection and turn right, if coming from San Antonio, or left if coming from Houston.). 0800 to 1700, Mon-Fri. Built in 1894, this is the fourth structure to function as the courthouse of Gonzales County. A beautiful building of Romanesque Revival architecture, the courthouse stands as the center of county governemnt and is the center of the cross that forms downtown Gonzales. The interior has beautiful paintings and artwork, depicting various scenes from the Texas Revolution and of the local area. No charge.
- Independence Park, S. US 183, just south of the Business 183 intersection, . Golf course, hiking, and sports complexes are some of the things to do at this small city park. Fishing along the Guadalupe River is very good.
- Matamoros Taco Hut, 201 N. St. Jospeh (On the main strip, two blocks from the courthouse.), ☎ 830-672-6615. Don't be fooled by the unassuming appearance of this Tex-Mex restaurant. It looks like an old service station outside, but the good food and service is a reminder that appearances can be deceiving. An average meal will run between 4 and 7 dollars. Tacos, fajitas, and enchiladas are some of the available choices. Soft drinks and tea are among the available beverages... alcohol is not served here. Try the Mexican Coca-Cola... very similar to the American version, but the bottles are much larger. $4 to $7.
- St. James Inn, 723 St. James St., ☎ 830-672-7066 ([email protected]), . This beautiful early 20th century home has been converted to a fine bed and breakfast. There are four seperate rooms to choose from; prices vary by season and your room choice. There are ghost stories that the former occupants still live there and roam the halls at night. So don't be surprised if you hear something rattling nearby. It may be a young girl just trying to say hello...
- Best Western Regency Inn and Suites, 1811 E. Sarah DeWitt Dr., ☎ 830-672-5555. checkin: 1400; checkout: 1100. A nice modern option on E. US Alt 90 (Sarah DeWitt Dr). It has 27 rooms, with smoking and non-smoking rooms. High speed internet access is avaliable. There is a small outdoor pool available as well.
Follow US 183 south to the Gulf Coast and major cities like Corpus Christi and Brownsville, passing through beautiful small towns, such as Cuero and Goliad. Taking 183 north will take you towards Austin and the Texas Hill Country. Between Gonzales and Interstate 10, make sure to stop by Palmetto State Park, to see a unique collection of Palmettos. US 90 west will take you towards Seguin and San Antonio. US 90 east goes to Houston, while passing through a handful of small towns along the way like Shiner and Hallettsville.