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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
High Island in Galveston County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

High Island

 
 
High Island Marker image. Click for full size.
By Rich Pfingsten, November 18, 2010
1. High Island Marker
Inscription. The coastal community of High Island sits atop a salt dome at the east end of Bolivar Peninsula. It was named High Island because the hill sits about 45 feet above sea, the only dry land visible during storms and flooding.

Settled by anglos in the early 1800s, nearly all of High Island lies within the Martin Dunman survey, granted in 1837. The pioneers were mostly farmers, though George E. Smith gained fame from his patented bottled water from natural springs on his land.

The town expanded in 1886 when the gulf and interstate railroad began operations in the area. A depot was built along with many new businesses. In 1897, C.T. Cade constructed the Sea View hotel on the hill overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. The hotel became a place of refuge in 1900 and 1915 when hurricanes struck the Texas coast, causing flooding over the peninsula.

Oil was discovered on High Island, with successful drilling beginning in 1916. Petroleum deposits found at the perimeter of the salt dome in 1931 started an oil boom and provided employment for the region.

High Island has become recognized internationally as an important habitat for migratory birds, bringing crowds of birdwatchers annually to the area.
 
Erected 1996 by Texas Historical Commission.
 
Location.
High Island Marker image. Click for full size.
By Rich Pfingsten, November 18, 2010
2. High Island Marker
29° 34.055′ N, 94° 23.897′ W. Marker is in High Island, Texas, in Galveston County. Marker can be reached from State Highway 124 0.2 miles south of Guidry Road. Click for map. Marker is in a rest area. Marker is in this post office area: High Island TX 77623, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 1 other marker is within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Rollover Fish Pass (approx. 7.4 miles away but has been reported missing).
 
Categories. Settlements & Settlers
 
High Island image. Click for full size.
By Rich Pfingsten, November 18, 2010
3. High Island
Area was severely damaged by Hurricane Ike.
From High Island Towards Gulf image. Click for full size.
By Richard Denney, January 24, 2010
4. From High Island Towards Gulf
This photo provides a sense of the elevation above sea level that High Island affords. Photo taken on Texas 124, looking south towards Gulf of Mexico in the distance (click on photo, looks towards horizon). While it doesn't seem like it's all that "high", it was enough to keep it above the flood waters of Hurricane Ike that devastated so much of Bolivar Peninsula.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Rich Pfingsten of Forest Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 469 times since then and 29 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Rich Pfingsten of Forest Hill, Maryland.   4. submitted on , by Richard Denney of Austin, Texas. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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