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    EAGLE LAKE, TEXAS

    Colorado County, Central Texas South
    Highway 90A and FM 102
    15 miles SE of Columbus
    50 miles SW of Houston
    26 miles NW of Wharton

    Population: 3,664

    Eagle Lake Area Hotels
    Columbus Hotels

    Eagle Lake Texas parade float
    Parade Float in downtown Eagle Lake
    Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01619

    History in a Pecan Shell

    Like Gertrude Stein said about Oakland (California, not the Texas town in Colorado County) - "When you get there, there's no there there." If you're traveling to Eagle Lake expecting to see a lake - you might want to bring a tall step ladder. There is indeed a (1,400 acre) lake there - and it is indeed called Eagle Lake, but it's private property. A smaller lake called Lower Lake sits below Eagle Lake - also privately owned.

    The town dates from 1821 when scouts of Stephen F. Austin reportedly killed an eagle here. There's also a colorful legend about an Indian chief's daughter and two handsome suitors, but it sounds fanciful when compared to the more probable naming by Austin's scouts.

    In March of 1838 land along the lake was granted to one Patrick Reels. Two others held previously issued grants along the lakeshore. In the 1850s Gamaliel Good acquired most of the land and then sold 600 acres to DeWitt Clinton Harris, who sat on the board of the Buffalo Bayou, Brazos and Colorado Railway.

    The two became partners and planned a town here. Situated between Austin and prsent-day Houston, it couldn't miss. The railroad arrived just prior to the Civil War. After the war, when the railroads were expanding all over the state, Eagle Lake became a railroad crossroads. The Cane Belt, San Antonio and Aransas Pass, Southern Pacific and later the Santa Fe all had a presence in Eagle Lake. The Santa Fe depot still stands - as a privately owned building.

    Sugarcane was a cash crop after the Civil War and the planting of rice was introduced in the 1890s. The mills have been long gone, but grain elevators and rice dryers are still present - although several are vacant. The town remains popular with hunters who come for the ducks and geese.

    Baby Eagles Rhythm Band, Eagle Lake Texas 1941
    "The Baby Eagles" Rhythm Band c. 1941
    Photo Courtesy The Nesbitt Memorial Library #01950
    Eagle Lake High School Band  Eagle Lake Texas vintage photo
    Eagle Lake High School Band
    Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 1707
    Eagle Lake Texas first day of school 1935 photo
    First Day of School 1935
    Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01793
    Eagle Lake Rod and Gun Club, Eagle Lake Texas
    Eagle Lake Rod and Gun Club "Courtesy Vehicle"
    Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01629

    Eagle Pass Today:

    Eagle Lake Tx Depot

    Eagle Lake Depot
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, February 2009

    Eagle Lake Tx Depot

    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, February 2009
    More Texas Depots | Texas Railroads

    Eagle Lake Tx Caboose Museum

    Museum. More Texas Museums
    Photo courtesy Barclay Gibson, February 2009

    Railroad Interlocking Tower 115, Eagle Lake , Texas
    "Abandoned, but still standing in November, 1996, Tower 115 in Eagle Lake sits silently as an eastbound Southern Pacific freight rumbles by on the Sunset Route headed for Houston. The tower was razed shortly after this photo was taken." -
    Photo courtesy Jim King
    See Railroad Interlocking Towers of Texas
    Eagle Lake, Texas Grain Elevators
    Abandoned elevator near Eagle Lake
    TE photo, December 2003
    Cartoon:
    Snow Goose - by Roger T. Moore

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    Eagle Lake, Texas
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