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Lufkin (Angelina County)

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Settlers with Mexican land grants arrived in the mid-1830s, farming small grass prairies within the pine forests. The county was organized in 1846. Steamboats on the Neches River first carried timber to mills and to the port at Beaumont until the arrival of the Houston East and West Texas Railway in 1882, and ensuing connections made Lufkin the center of the East Texas lumber industry. The town became the county seat in 1892, after railroads bypassed three previous county seat locations. Lufkin is roughly divided into quadrants by the rail lines that intersect two blocks northwest of the public square.

The Piney Woods once covered about forty counties, but these forests of slow-growing longleaf pines were almost totally clear-cut. An estimated one billion feet of longleaf pine was cut in 1890 in Angelina County alone, where 275 sawmills were in operation by 1940. Managed reforestation since the mid-twentieth century has sustained Lufkin as the center of the Texas lumber industry.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.

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