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MARTIN DIES, JR., STATE PARK

MARTIN DIES, JR., STATE PARK. Martin Dies, Jr., State Park is located on B. A. Steinhagen Reservoir, U.S. Highway 190, and Park Road 48, fifty-five miles north of Beaumont in Jasper and Tyler counties. The 705-acre site, originally known as Dam B State Park, was renamed after Martin Dies, Jr., the son of Congressman Martin Dies (see DIES, MARTIN [1900–1972]) in 1965. It was leased from the United States Army Corps of Engineers in 1964, after the construction of the Town Bluff Dam (also known as Dam B; see DAM B RESERVOIR) and B. A. Steinhagen Reservoir in 1951. It consists of three separate units: Cherokee, Walnut Ridge, and Hen House Ridge. The parkland, located on the western edge of the Big Thicket, is generally flat and contains a mixture of pine and riverbottom hardwoods. Beech, magnolia, sweet bay, cypress, and willow trees are particularly common along shallow sloughs. During the fall, golden beeches and reddish hues of black gum and oak trees provide a brilliant contrast with the evergreen pine leaves. Woodland warblers, woodpeckers (including the pileated woodpecker), and water birds are among the notable forms of wildlife. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department maintains a variety of recreational facilities at the park, including day-use picnic sites, campsites with and without utilities, screen shelters, restrooms with and without showers, boat ramps, and sanitary dump stations. Swimming is popular along the lakefront, and hiking and nature trails cut through the bottomland forests. Fishermen seek out the reservoir's crappie and bass.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Martin Dies, Jr., State Park (brochure, Austin: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, 1983).

Robert Wooster

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Robert Wooster, "MARTIN DIES, JR., STATE PARK," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/gkm03), accessed October 21, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.