in a Pecan ShellFounded
in 1834 and named for Lorenzo de Zavala, the man to whom the land was originally
granted. But when the town was platted, Thomas B. Huling was holding the deed.
The town was dependent on the Angelina River for its economy and it served as
the seat of government for Bevil's Settlement. There
was some 30 or 40 families living in the region.
Zavala was incorporated
on Christmas Eve, 1838, by an act of the Republic of Texas. A courthouse was built;
and a post office was in operation in 1839.
Despite being a tireless
booster, Mr. Huling failed to recruit enough residents to insure growth. Then
in the 1840s the town suffered a fire that destroyed the courthouse, many homes,
and almost all records.
Huling sold most of his holdings to businessman
Jerich Durkee of London, England, in 1847. Huling received $1,000 cash and 5,000
"tin boxes of Green Mountain Vegitable [sic] Ointment." The story of Mr. Huling
ends here - and the reader is left not knowing if he was able to turn his "Vegitable
Ointment" into cash.
Zavala declined despite efforts of Durkee to
entice immigrants to settle here. The post office closed by 1856, although it
continued to be shown on Jasper County's records as late as 1878.
1936 a marker was erected at Hamilton's Cemetery to remember the former town.
Escapes, in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing
Texas, asks that anyone wishing to share their local history, stories, and vintage/historic
photos, please contact
|Book Hotel Here