Jack Brooks Federal Building, U.S. Post Office and Courthouse, Beaumont, TX
Location: 300 Willow St #1, Beaumont, TX 77701
The Jack Brooks Federal Building in Beaumont, Texas is significant because of its monumental example of the Neoclassical style of architecture in Beaumont; it is representative of the Federal building projects of the 1930s; and it has been the major symbol of the Federal presence in Beaumont for more than 60 years.
The original building was completed in 1933 at a cost of $463,000. The Neoclassical style was prevalent in many civic and government buildings of the period. Architects were Fred C. Stone and F.W. and D.E. Steinman of Beaumont. The firm still operates with Douglass E. Steinman, Jr. as the principal architect. H.M. Sanford of Houston was Consulting Engineer. The passage of the Public Buildings Act in 1926 precipitated a period of building construction that was unprecedented in the United States. Due to the large percentage of failure of the nation's architectural firms, the design of the buildings by local firms was encouraged in the 1930s. Thus, a local firm was commissioned for the design of the Federal Building in Beaumont. Originally conceived as the main post office and courthouse for the area, the building currently serves the same function though the post office presence has been greatly reduced.
Beaumont was originally settled in the early 1830s but it wasn't until oil was discovered in 1925 and adduced financial security for the area. This precipitated the building of a large number of civic and government buildings that continue to dominate the architectural character of the city.
The Federal Building has served the community for thirty years when it was determined that additional space was needed for Federal functions. A 76,500 square food addition was built in 1964 on the west elevation of the building at the cost of $1,830,000. George Ingram was the general contractor. Extensive remodeling was done to the postal sales and work area at the time. Representative Jack Brooks, for whom the building was named in 1978, introduced Senator Ralph Yarbrough as featured speaker for the dedication ceremonies.
The Jack Brooks Federal Building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977 as a contributing building to the Beaumont Commercial District. It continues to serve the community of Beaumont as a post office, Federal office building, and with increasing prominence as a Federal Courthouse. Therefore, the building remains, after more than sixty years, the predominant symbol of the Federal presence in Beaumont, Texas.
- Architects: Stone, Fred C. Steinman, F.W. & D.E
- Construction Date: 1934
- GSA Building Number: TX0019ZZ
- National Register of Historic Places Landmark Status: National Register Listed