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SNOW TOWN, TEXAS

San Jacinto County, East Texas

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A History of Snow Town, TX

By Paul Latour

Snow Town, sometimes mistaken as Snow Hill on some Texas maps, lies just East of Lake Livingston south of Oakhurst and North of Stephen Creek off of F.M. 156.

The town is named after one of the early pioneers of the area, Thomas H. Snow, who ran a saloon and store. The town later banned alcohol consumption, so Thomas Snow moved to “Rough Edge”, an area five miles South of Snow Town to rebuild his saloon business. He later died in a cotton gin mishap, and is buried in an unmarked grave in the Coldspring Cemetery.

Snow Town never had much of a boom in population and remains sparsely populated today as it did long ago. It never even progressed so far as to get a post office (in its own name), and the population initially had to go to Dodge occasionally to pick up their mail. It is said they never got a lot of mail though, and so in that sense you could say they were socially isolated.

In 1899 the sawmill town of Oakhurst established a post office. Every man was needed at the Oakhurst mill, so later various men from Snow Town began to carry and deliver the mail.

Snow Town did see some growth in 1908, when the Oakhurst mill bought out another mill, the Palmetto sawmill, and then combined their production at the Oakhurst location, drawing a few of the Snow Town residents to the mill. Eventually a rail line was established connecting Oakhurst to Dodge, resulting in a train depot at Snow Town. Residents of Snow Town could take the train to Dodge for 25 cents or from Snow Town to Oakhurst for 10 cents. Snow Town had members in the Ku Klux Klan and in 1921 they held a march at the depot where 300 people gathered to watch.

At its height, Snow Town had five stores, including at one time a barber shop and pool hall. Over time the business owners aged and died, and with it the short life of Snow Town began to fade.

The Oakhurst sawmill shut down in 1930, leading to a serious drop in population of the area. This event led to the overall death of Oakhurst which further hampered economic activity in Snow Town. Eventually the Post Office moved once again, this time off of Highway 190.

Nowadays, a lot of what was Snow Town is supposedly called Oakhurst, because at one point the Oakhurst Post Office was transferred to Snow Town but retained its name of the Oakhurst Post Office. Topographic maps indicate Snow Hill Road passes through the heart of what was once Snow Town. Old maps also indicate that there was once a chapel in Snow Town, with a possible cemetery adjacent to it, but it is either lost or on private property. The area now has a large Christmas tree farm, few residents, and a few old buildings.

Sources:

  • San Jacinto County: A Glimpse Into the Past Version 1: A Collection of Historical Articles
  • Dim Trails and Blurred Footprints: A History of San Jacinto County, Texas. Published by the San Jacinto County Historical Commission. Printed in 1982. “History of Snowtown” by Iva Blalock.
  • Information about Snow Town: http://www.millhollowtexas.com/page6.htm
  • Snow Town TX
    Photo courtesy Paul Latour
    Snow Town TX
    Snow Town scenes
    Photo courtesy Paul Latour
    San Jacinto Texas 1940s map
    1940s San Jacinto County map showing Oakhurst & Dodge
    (Above "SAN" in "SAN JACINTO" near Walker/San Jacinto County line)
    Courtesy Texas General Land Office

    Snow Town, Texas Area Destinations:
    San Jacinto County Towns
    Coldspring
    Conroe
    Huntsville
    Houston

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