Friends of the Llano Red Top Jail

Press Release March 2013

The City of Llano has removed the concrete ramp outside of the jail so that a digger truck can drill the holes for the outside piers. This past week, Frank Rowell and John Newell have removed the remaining floor joists. These old boards will be repurposed by John Newell into benches and furniture that will be for sale to benefit the Red Top Jail Restoration Project and for the future museum. Frank Rowell and others have prepared the walls so that the stonemason could repair the crumbling mortar and repoint the grout on the first floor.

It's interesting how the jail was built in 1895. Think about it -- no power tools, only mules to haul the heavy granite, long boards and stone. Skilled men worked for six months and produced this wonder. The outer granite façade was only 6-8 inches thick. The inner wythe was up to a foot of local stone (mainly sandstone) that was "glued" together with a soft mortar. They used a soft mortar because this allowed movement as the building went through periods of drought and deluge. This is how cathedrals were built in Europe.

The stonemason, Mr. Timmons, will use a similar soft mortar specified by our structural engineer, Pat Sparks. Frank Rowell's knowledge of local terrain will be helpful for the selection of soil for the mortar, according to Mr. Sparks.

If you haven't donated already, there is still time to claim a pier in our "Adopt-A-Pier Campaign". There are a few adoptable piers left for $1200 apiece. Get your name on a permanent plaque at the planned Red Top Jail Museum and engraved on that pier! Who can resist a chance to leave your name permanently on a Llano icon!

Sheri Zoch, Ph.D.
Vice President and Grantwriter , Friends of the Llano Red Top Jail

The Incarceration of Jail Buck

The painted deer was arrested by Officer Lance Idol, scolded and handcuffed to the flagpole at the Red Top Jail on August 27. Sheri Zoch showed up with a leg cast, wrist splints, knee brace, back brace and bandages resulting from Jail Buck’s assault. Officer Idol said he was arresting the deer for assault with a deadly weapon, his antlers! The bad buck got what he deserved, life in prison (or outside of it). If you haven’t seen him, take some time to swing by the jail. See if you can spot all 3 of his tattoos!

Frank Rowell
frank@EnchantedRocksAndJewelry.com 325-247-4137

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