SABINE, TX (JEFFERSON COUNTY)
SABINE, TEXAS (Jefferson County). Sabine, on the west bank of Sabine Pass south of Farm Road 3322 and thirty-two miles south of Beaumont in extreme southeastern Jefferson County, was founded in 1878 by New York financiers who objected to the price of waterfront property at the town of Sabine Pass. By the winter of 1879–80 a six-foot channel linked Sabine to the Gulf of Mexico, and in 1882 jetties were begun. Dock and port facilities were installed, and the Windsor resort hotel opened. A post office was established in 1899 but was discontinued sometime in the 1930s. Though the town served as the terminus of the Sabine and East Texas Railroad, its growth was curtailed by heavy losses from coastal storms in 1886 and 1900 and by competition from Port Arthur. By 1914 the Texas and New Orleans Railroad was in operation at Sabine, and the town had a population of 300, two churches, several stores, and a school; at that time it also had sulfur mines and shipped fish and fertilizer. The Sabine population rose to 400 by 1925 and remained at that level until the late 1940s; during this period the highest number of businesses reported there was five. In 1933 the railroad was discontinued and its installations removed. The 1936 county highway map showed a school, several buildings, and scattered dwellings near Kountze Lake. By 1949 the community had become a fishing resort and had an estimated population of 250. Its population numbered 260 from 1950 to 1964, rose to 310 in 1965, and fell to 100 in 1966, when only one business remained. From 1972 until 1988 the population was estimated at seventy-five, after which it was no longer recorded. In the 1990s a quarantine station and a United States Coast Guard station were maintained at the site, and Dick Dowling Park was a half mile south.
Beaumont Enterprise, August 2, 1927, September 10, 17, 1933, July 4, 1948. W. T. Block, A History of Jefferson County, Texas, from Wilderness to Reconstruction (M.A. thesis, Lamar University, 1974; Nederland, Texas: Nederland Publishing, 1976). James L. Rock and W. I. Smith, Southern and Western Texas Guide for 1878 (St. Louis: Granger, 1878).