History of South Houston,Texas

By George E. Wolf Jr/2009

South Houston, Texas started out as Dumont Station in 1907 which was owned by the Western Land Corporation (WLC), they brought the first industries to Dumont. Mr. C. S. Woods from Georgia, divided the town into lots.

In 1908 the first elementary school was built. It was located at the present site of South Houston's elementary. The Asgard Collage for girls was established and lasted 5 years. The collage was forced to close. This is where Collage Ave. gets its name. In 1910,there was a airplane flight from South Houston to Galveston and back, a first in the state of Texas. The plane was flown by Louis Paulin and Fred Dekor. In 1913, Dumont (South Houston) became a village and its first mayor was W. Tharp Jr. There was a stove foundry and a gasoline engine factory. In 1915, a hurricane nearly removed the town from the map. In 1922 there was the Texas Fireworks Company located next to the tracks along Old Galveston Rd. The Christy Brothers Circus used South Houston as it winter home from 1920 to 1930. It was started by George Washington Christy, who built a winter home and staging area for his animals. He later became mayor of South Houston. The home is still located off of Spencer Hwy in South Houston. The first water lines were installed in 1922. In the 1930's the cattle roomed free in the streets until the stock law was passed in 1936. At this time most of the streets were dirt roads. The first oil well was erected in 1936 and later there was about one well for every four blocks. Old timers still remember when South Houston was a peaceful prairie covered with strawberries and grazing cattle.

South Houston is adjacent to Pasadena, two miles southeast of the intersection of Interstate Highway 45 and State Highway 3, in southeastern Harris County. The town was named Dumont when it was founded in 1907 by C. S. Woods of the Western Land Company. By 1910 a post office had been established, and by 1913 the town was incorporated as South Houston. The first elected mayor was Walter Tharp. During the town's early years local growers shipped the produce of truck farms, including strawberries, figs, and various vegetables, on the tracks of the Galveston, Houston and Henderson Railroad. The development of the Houston Ship Channel helped the development of heavy industries further inland.

South Houston grew rapidly between the 1940's and the early 1960's. Its most colorful citizen during those years was George Christy, who served as the City's mayor from 1949 to 1951 and from 1960 to 1964. Christy was the owner of a circus, and his elephants helped build Spencer Highway.



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