La Porte, Texas

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La Porte is a city in Harris County, Texas within the Bay Area of the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area. As of the 2000 U.S. Census, the city population was 31,880. La Porte is the fourth largest incorporated city in Harris County.

When La Porte celebrated its centennial in 1992, it was the home of Barbours Cut Terminal, operated by the Port of Houston Authority since 1977. 15 years later, The Port of Houston's newest addition, Bayport, was established just South of La Porte. Thus the area around La Porte has served an increasingly important role in international trade since the 1970s.

The area around modern La Porte gained fame early in Texas history as the location of the Battle of San Jacinto on April 21, 1836, which ended the Texas Revolution, establishing the independence of the Republic of Texas from Mexico. The San Jacinto Monument, in La Porte, commemorates the battle. During the early 1900s, particularly the 1920s and 1930s, La Porte's Sylvan Beach became a nationally known tourist destination attracting some of the nation's most well-known entertainers. As a result of changing economics in the Houston area and beach erosion the tourist business declined while industrial development in the area grew. During World War II and afterward La Porte's economy rapidly re-oriented toward petroleum/petrochemicals and shipping, which developed as the dominant industries in the Pasadena-Baytown area.

Contents


History

The community of La Porte was founded in 1892 as a speculative real estate venture by an investment group.[4] A 22-acre (0.089 km2) public space known as Sylvan Grove was reserved by the waterfront.[5] The area around Sylvan Grove soon gained amenties including bathhouses, boating piers, and a Victorial hotel with a dance pavillion. La Porte quickly became the most popular tourist destination in the Houston area.[4][5][6] Sylvan Grove park was acquired in 1896 by a company known as Adoue and Lobit and renamed Sylvan Beach.[5] Cottage retreats were built around the waterfront.[5][6]

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