Site of Wardville
Location: On US 67, 50 yards west of Cleburne city limits.
(1/4 mile south of marker) First county seat of Johnson County, chosen in Aug. 1855, and located on an 80-acre donation from William O'Neal. Named for Thomas William Ward (1807-72), a Republic of Texas soldier and second commissioner of General Land Office of Texas. The first courthouse, 16 feet square, was built by O'Neal of logs overlaid with clapboards, at cost of $49. When Wardville was found to violate Texas constitution's requirement that a county seat by within 5 miles of center of county, it was abandoned (1856). Ironically, later county line changes made it near the center.
Source: Texas Historical Commission