|| The growth of the petrochemical industry in the southern part of Jefferson County in the early 1930s resulted in the need for extended county government services. State legislation was required in order to enable the county to build a "subcourthouse" in Port Arthur. Introduced in the Legislature by local elected officials, a bill was passed on April 30, 1931, and plans were made to build a new south county office facility to serve this part of the county.
Funded as a project of the Federal Public Works Administration (PWA), construction of the building began on August 10, 1935, and was completed the following year. The first floor housed offices of county commissioners and other officials; the second floor contained court facilities; and the third floor was occupied by a jail.
Still in service as a county facility, the structure is an ornamental example of the art moderne style as typically interpreted by PWA projects in the 1930s. Prominent features include stylized classical detailing, eagles capping the pilasters at the entry, floral banding, and allegorical medallions. A one-story addition was built in the 1970s.
Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1989