GILCHRIST, TEXAS. Gilchrist is a resort and residential community on State Highway 87 on Bolivar Peninsula some seventeen miles east of Bolivar Point in Galveston County. The community was named for Gibb Gilchrist, who relocated and reconstructed the rail line from Port Bolivar to High Island after the 1915 hurricane had destroyed it. Before that time the settlement in the area had been called Rollover. A post office was established at Gilchrist in 1950. A key feature of the community is the Rollover Fish Pass (or Rollover Pass), which bisects Bolivar Peninsula as well as Gilchrist and carries water between East Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Fishing in its waters is considered among the best in Texas. Rollover Pass was a natural pass that had been closed until 1955, when it was opened by the Texas Game and Fish Commission (see TEXAS PARKS AND WILDLIFE DEPARTMENT) as part of its efforts to preserve and improve fish and wildlife resources. In 1990 Gilchrist's core population was about 750, but it had significantly more residents during the summer and on holidays. Several businesses catered to permanent residents as well as to sportsmen and tourists. The population remained at 750 in 2000.
A. Pat Daniels, Bolivar! Gulf Coast Peninsula (Crystal Beach, Texas: Peninsula, 1985). Houston Chronicle, October 9, 1980, October 3, 1983. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin (Bolivar Peninsula).