Love's Lookout, a scenic ridge two miles north of Jacksonville in north central Cherokee County (at 32°02' N, 95°17' W), has an elevation of 720 feet above sea level and rises 240 feet above the surrounding terrain. The ridge is part of a long, flat-topped hill that extends for nine miles. The east side of the hill is a steep escarpment offering vistas into a wide valley below. Mud Creek, a main tributary of the Angelina River, parallels the ridge ten miles to the east. On the ridge's western side the land rises gradually from the Neches River, twelve miles to the west. Conifers and grasses grow in the area's deep, fine sandy loams. During the antebellum Texas period Love's Lookout was a popular recreation spot for townspeople at Larissa, 3½ miles to the northwest. With the advent of the automobile, the area became a favorite site for outings. After 1910 the bluff became known as Love's Lookout, after Wesley Love, who in 1904 bought much of the surrounding area and planted a 600-acre peach farm. After Love's death in 1925 his wife donated a twenty-two-acre tract to the state of Texas for a state park. The state, however, failed to develop the park, and in 1934 the city of Jacksonville purchased an additional twenty-five acres from Love's heir and developed the two tracts of land as a city park. The Work Projects Administration constructed roads and trails, an amphitheater, picnic facilities, a concession stand, and walls along the brink of the hill. Later, an Olympic-sized swimming pool was constructed there with private funds. In 1967 the Love family turned the original tract over to the state highway department, which has since developed it into a roadside park. In 1978 the Texas Historical Commission placed a marker at the site.
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Marker Files, Texas Historical Commission, Austin.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed August 17, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
March 1, 1995