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DEER PARK, TX

DEER PARK, TEXAS. Deer Park, in the industrial section of central Harris County, was named for the private park for deer that formerly occupied the site. The subdivision was established in 1893 and was the site of a Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio Railway station by about 1894. A Deer Park post office was established in 1893, discontinued in 1919, and reestablished in 1930. In 1896 the community had a population of forty, a hotel, a general store, and three resident carpenters. In the 1930s an independent school district was established, but by 1940 the population had fallen to twenty-five. By 1946, however, the area began to flourish, as Deer Park became the site of refineries and toluol plants for the production of TNT. The local Shell plant alone produced ten million gallons of toluol annually. The 1940 census listed a Deer Park population of 100, and in 1948 the community was incorporated. During World War II the United States Maritime Commission contracted with the Houston Shipbuilding Corporation, a subsidiary of Todd Shipyards, to establish a $5 million yard at Irish Bend, near Deer Park. The town, governed by a city manager-council system, endorsed a plan to expand educational opportunities in 1961 and municipal recreational facilities in 1964. In conjunction with surrounding communities, Deer Park has supported San Jacinto Junior College since its opening in 1961. Industries include the manufacture of plastics, paper products, carbon, concrete products, and alkali materials. In 1970 the town reported eighty-six businesses. The population during the 1950s increased sixfold, from 736 in 1950 to 4,865 in 1960. The 1970 population of 12,773 represented a 162.5 percent increase over the previous decade, and from 1970 to 1990 the population continued a steady rise, reaching a high of 27,652 in 1990. The maximum number of businesses in the same period was 324 in 1986. In 2000 the population was 28,520 with 819 businesses.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

David G. McComb, Houston: The Bayou City (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1969; rev. ed., Houston: A History, 1981).

Diana J. Kleiner

Citation

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

Diana J. Kleiner, "DEER PARK, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hed02), accessed September 01, 2014. Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.