Laneville is near the Angelina River twelve miles south of Henderson in south central Rusk County. The community grew up in the 1880s at the intersection of four roads leading north, south, east, and west. From these roads, in those days only lanes, it got its name. Laneville was settled by wealthy men who preferred the rich red agricultural lands of the area; its pattern of settlement closely followed these redlands and avoided the sandy spots nearby. A post office opened at the community in 1888 with Philetus Williamson appointed as first postmaster. In 1950 the Laneville post office was one of only fourteen in operation in the county; it still existed in 1990. The population of Laneville was 171 in 1904, dropping to 108 by 1925. During the early 1930s, at the time of the East Texas oil boom (see EAST TEXAS OILFIELD,) Laneville's population grew briefly to 320, served by sixteen businesses. In the mid-1930s and early 1940s, however, its population dropped again, though the town retained several stores and lumbermills, three churches, two schools, and a cotton gin. From the 1950s through 1990 Laneville's population was estimated at 200; in 1990 it reported ten businesses. In 2000 the population remained the same with twenty businesses.