in Eagle Lake
Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01682
a Pecan Shell
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
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.
Eagle Lake Vintage Photos
Eagle Lake Today - Photo Gallery
Lake Vintage Photos:
in downtown Eagle Lake
Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01619
|"The Baby Eagles"
Rhythm Band c. 1941
Photo Courtesy The Nesbitt Memorial Library #01950
|Eagle Lake High
Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 1707
|First Day of
Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01793
|Eagle Lake Rod
and Gun Club "Courtesy Vehicle"
Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01629
Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 01204
See Texas Animals
Photo Courtesy Nesbitt Memorial Library # 00211
Eagle Lake Depot
courtesy Ken Stavinoha, May 2016
More Texas Museums
Lake Depot Museum
The former Santa Fe Depot in Eagle Lake now houses a museum.
This is an updated image of the restored building.
- Ken Stavinoha, www.eaglelakedepot.org, November 24, 2016
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." -
courtesy Jim King
Interlocking Towers of Texas
Escapes, in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing
Texas, asks that anyone wishing to share their local history, stories,
landmarks and recent or vintage photos, please contact