Quartel das Esquadras (Squads Barracks) was built between 1736 and 1750 by order of the Count of Lippe, and it’s supposed to have been designed by Manuel de Azevedo Fortes.
In 1760 a group of Jesuit prisoners were housed in the barracks, one of whom, Anselmo Eckart, left a written description of the building. The building also served to inspire the theatrical scenery (designed by Cavalry Helper João Bernardo Real da Fonseca) during the wedding celebration of Princess D. Maria with Infante D. Pedro. In the 19th century it was repaired and in the 20th century public services were installed there.
With its 18th-century military architecture, the barracks is a two-storey building, with an elongated rectangular floor plan and a gabled roof, and its apex is punctuated with trunk-pyramidal chimneys. The building is made up of two juxtaposed and staggered structures, defining very long elevations, highlighted on the ground floor by a continuous archway consisting of twenty low arches and a full central arch. The first marks a vaulted recess leading up to the doors, the second marks a transverse tunnel interruption. The external staircase, with three flights of stairs, is located at the top. The interior consists of two transverse modules on two floors, subdivided into two intercommunicated barracks, vaulted and equipped with a fireplace.
It may be considered the last of a typological series of infantry barracks seen in the Alentejo market squares, having great affinity with the Moura Infantry Barracks.