La Porte, Texas
La Porte is a city in Harris County, Texas
Harris County, Texas
As of the 2010 Census, the population of the county was 4,092,459, White Americans made up 56.6% of Harris County's population; non-Hispanic whites represented 33.0% of the population. Black Americans made up 18.9% of the population. Native Americans made up 0.7% of Harris County's population...

 within the Bay Area
Galveston Bay Area
The Galveston Bay Area is a region that surrounds the Galveston Bay estuary of Southeast Texas in the United States within the metropolitan area. Residents of Houston and surrounding areas typically call it simply the "Bay Area"...

 of the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown
Greater Houston
Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown is a 10-county metropolitan area defined by the Office of Management and Budget. It is located along the Gulf Coast region in the U.S. state of Texas...

 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
Barbours Cut Terminal
The Barbours Cut Container Terminal, or simply the Barbours Cut Terminal, is a major deep water port in the Greater Houston area in the U.S. state of Texas. Part of the larger Port of Houston complex, Barbours Cut is the largest of the terminals and the first port in Texas to handle standardized...

, operated by the Port of Houston
Port of Houston
The Port of Houston is a port in Houston—the fourth-largest city in the United States. The Port is a 25-mile-long complex of diversified public and private facilities located a few hours' sailing time from the Gulf of Mexico...

 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
Battle of San Jacinto
The Battle of San Jacinto, fought on April 21, 1836, in present-day Harris County, Texas, was the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution. Led by General Sam Houston, the Texian Army engaged and defeated General Antonio López de Santa Anna's Mexican forces in a fight that lasted just eighteen...

 on April 21, 1836, which ended the Texas Revolution
Texas Revolution
The Texas Revolution or Texas War of Independence was an armed conflict between Mexico and settlers in the Texas portion of the Mexican state Coahuila y Tejas. The war lasted from October 2, 1835 to April 21, 1836...

, establishing the independence of the Republic of Texas
Republic of Texas
The Republic of Texas was an independent nation in North America, bordering the United States and Mexico, that existed from 1836 to 1846.Formed as a break-away republic from Mexico by the Texas Revolution, the state claimed borders that encompassed an area that included all of the present U.S...

 from Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

. The San Jacinto Monument
San Jacinto Monument
The San Jacinto Monument is a high column located on the Houston Ship Channel in unincorporated Harris County, Texas near the city of La Porte. The monument is topped with a 220-ton star that commemorates the site of the Battle of San Jacinto, the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution...

, in the unincorporated area of 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.


The community of La Porte was founded in 1892 as a speculative real estate
Real estate
In general use, esp. North American, 'real estate' is taken to mean "Property consisting of land and the buildings on it, along with its natural resources such as crops, minerals, or water; immovable property of this nature; an interest vested in this; an item of real property; buildings or...

 venture by an investment group. A 22 acre (0.08903092 km²) public space known as Sylvan Grove was reserved by the waterfront. The area around Sylvan Grove soon gained amenties including bathhouses, boating piers, and a Victorial hotel with a dance pavilion. La Porte quickly became the most popular tourist destination in the Houston area. Sylvan Grove park was acquired in 1896 by a company known as Adoue and Lobit and renamed Sylvan Beach. Cottage retreats were built around the waterfront.

In 1900 a devastating hurricane
Galveston Hurricane of 1900
The Hurricane of 1900 made landfall on the city of Galveston in the U.S. state of Texas, on September 8, 1900.It had estimated winds of at landfall, making it a Category 4 storm on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale...

 hit the shoreline seriously damaging the community's attractions. As the Texas Oil Boom
Texas Oil Boom
The Texas Oil Boom, sometimes called the Gusher Age, was a period of dramatic change and economic growth in U.S. state of Texas during the early 20th century that began with the discovery of a large petroleum reserve near Beaumont, Texas...

 took hold beginning in 1901, and neighboring Houston became home to many wealthy businessmen, La Porte quickly rebuilt and re-established itself as a tourist center. It was, however, damaged again by a major fire and another hurricane in 1915. The community rebuilt yet again. During the 1920s and 1930s Sylvan Beach Amusement Park became a nationally recognized destination featuring beauty contests and regular performances by famous bands in addition to a growing gallery of amenities. Some of the most well-known performers of the era, including Guy Lombardo
Guy Lombardo
Gaetano Alberto "Guy" Lombardo was a Canadian-American bandleader and violinist.Forming "The Royal Canadians" in 1924 with his brothers Carmen, Lebert, and Victor and other musicians from his hometown, Lombardo led the group to international success, billing themselves as creating "The Sweetest...

, the Dorsey Brothers, Phil Harris
Phil Harris
Harris and Faye married in 1941; it was a second marriage for both and lasted 54 years, until Harris's death. Harris engaged in a fistfight at the Trocadero nightclub in 1938 with RKO studio mogul Bob Stevens; the cause was reported to be over Faye after Stevens and Faye had ended a romantic...

, and Benny Goodman
Benny Goodman
Benjamin David “Benny” Goodman was an American jazz and swing musician, clarinetist and bandleader; widely known as the "King of Swing".In the mid-1930s, Benny Goodman led one of the most popular musical groups in America...

, appeared at the park. In the 1930s the park was completely revamped adding a large boardwalk, amusement rides, and many other attractions. The community remained small, supported exclusively by Sylvan Beach tourism and the nearby Bay Ridge community, an area of beachfront summer homes in neighboring Morgan's Point built by wealthy Houstonians.

The beachfront began to physically shrink beginning around 1928 because of erosion from the wakes of shipping traffic, and land subsidence resulting from the extraction of groundwater in the area. Gas rationing in World War II slowed tourism. A hurricane in 1943 managed to destroy most of the tourist attractions. Most of the damaged structures at Sylvan Beach were never rebuilt after this time and La Porte's tourist industry rapidly declined. By the later 1900s erosion had completely eliminated the beach itself.

As shipyards and industrial plants in World War II were developed in nearby communities such as Pasadena, Baytown, and Deer Park the community's residents became more dependent on these businesses. The opening of the La Porte-Baytown tunnel in 1954 further spurred development. The later establishment of the Johnson Space Center in the nearby Clear Lake Area, the Barbours Cut shipping terminal in neighboring Morgan's Point, and the Bayport Industrial District
Bayport Industrial District
The Bayport Industrial District is a large commercial real-estate development located in southeast Harris County, Texas, within the Bay Area of Greater Houston. It is one of the two industrial districts in the extraterritorial jurisdiction of La Porte...

 within La Porte's jurisdiction have gradually made the community successful as part of the Houston area's
Greater Houston
Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown is a 10-county metropolitan area defined by the Office of Management and Budget. It is located along the Gulf Coast region in the U.S. state of Texas...

 industrial heartland.

Much of the history of La Porte's glory years as a tourist haven has been preserved by the La Porte Bay Area Heritage Society. Plans have been discussed for many years to restore La Porte's status as a tourist destination. A project to restore the beachfront at Sylvan Beach Park began in 2009. Other plans including building a large hotel on the shoreline have been discussed as well.


La Porte is located at 29°39′53"N 95°2′27"W (29.664768, -95.040824).

According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the city has a total area of 20 square miles (51.8 km²), of which, 18.9 square miles (49 km²) of it is land and 1 square miles (2.6 km²) of it (5.16%) is water.


As of the census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2000, there were 31,880 people, 10,928 households, and 8,578 families residing in the city. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 1,683.3 people per square mile (649.9/km²). There were 11,720 housing units at an average density of 618.8 per square mile (238.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 81.39% White, 6.25% Black or African American
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, 0.48% Native American, 1.13% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 8.52% from other races
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, and 2.15% from two or more races. 20.45% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 10,928 households out of which 43.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.8% were married couples
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 11.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.5% were non-families. 17.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 4.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.90 and the average family size was 3.28.

In the city the population was spread out with 29.7% under the age of 18, 8.9% from 18 to 24, 32.7% from 25 to 44, 21.8% from 45 to 64, and 6.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 98.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $55,810, and the median income for a family was $60,034. Males had a median income of $46,118 versus $29,514 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the city was $21,178. About 6.2% of families and 7.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.4% of those under age 18 and 11.2% of those age 65 or over.

Government and infrastructure

The United States Postal Service
United States Postal Service
The United States Postal Service is an independent agency of the United States government responsible for providing postal service in the United States...

 operates the La Porte Post Office at 801 West Fairmont Parkway.


La Porte contains many communities.

One community, Lomax
Lomax, La Porte, Texas
Lomax is a neighborhood of La Porte, a city in Harris County, Texas, United States. Lomax once was a separate community.The community was named after R.A. Lomax, a native of Illinois who went to the area in 1885 and donated land for a school....

, was once a separate area but is now a part of La Porte.

The local hip hop
Hip hop
Hip hop is a form of musical expression and artistic culture that originated in African-American and Latino communities during the 1970s in New York City, specifically the Bronx. DJ Afrika Bambaataa outlined the four pillars of hip hop culture: MCing, DJing, breaking and graffiti writing...

 name is the "L.P."

Primary and secondary schools

Jennie Reid Elementary, Rizzuto Elementary, Lomax Elementary, La Porte Elementary, Bayshore Elementary, College Park Elementary, and Heritage Elementary. The secondary schools include Baker Sixth Grade Campus, La Porte Junior High, Lomax Junior High and La Porte High School.

Public schools

The area is zoned to the La Porte Independent School District
La Porte Independent School District
La Porte Independent School District is a school district based in La Porte, Texas, United States.The district serves the cities of La Porte, Morgan's Point, and Shoreacres, a small portion of Pasadena, a small portion of Deer Park...

, including La Porte High School.

However, many parents choose to place their children in Deer Park Schools due to their higher academic ratings by the Texas Education Agency.

Public libraries

The city is served by the 23357 square feet (2,169.9 m²) La Porte Branch Library of Harris County Public Library
Harris County Public Library
Harris County Public Library is a public library system serving Harris County, Texas, United States. The county library system is headquartered at 8080 El Rio in Houston....

 (HCPL), located at 600 South Broadway. The library first opened in 1929. The City of La Porte maintains the buildings and furnishings while HCPL staffs and operates the library.

Notable residents

Sarah Emma Edmonds Seelye (December 1841 – September 5, 1898), Canadian-born woman who served as a man in the American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

 under the assumed identity of "Franklin T. Thompson."

Olympic Gold and Silver Medalist Kerron Clement
Kerron Clement
Kerron Stephon Clement is Trinidadian-born track and field athlete who represents the United States and specializes in the 400-meter hurdles...

 (Track and Field)

United States National Amateur Boxing three-time Bantamweight Champion Michael Collins

MLB/ MiLB Players / Prospects:
Kendrick Perkins (Red Socks)

NFL and three-time NFL Pro Bowler Shaun Rogers

NFL running back for the Dallas Cowboys Curvin Richards


The city sits adjacent to three major economic hubs of the Bay Area
Galveston Bay Area
The Galveston Bay Area is a region that surrounds the Galveston Bay estuary of Southeast Texas in the United States within the metropolitan area. Residents of Houston and surrounding areas typically call it simply the "Bay Area"...

 and Greater Houston
Greater Houston
Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown is a 10-county metropolitan area defined by the Office of Management and Budget. It is located along the Gulf Coast region in the U.S. state of Texas...

: the Bayport Industrial District, the Battleground Industrial District, and the Barbours Cut shipping terminal.


Harris County Transit
Harris County Transit
The Harris County Transit Services Division is a transportation agency that serves areas of Harris County, Texas that do not have service from Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County, Texas...

 provides public transportation in La Porte.

La Porte Municipal Airport
La Porte Municipal Airport (Texas)
La Porte Municipal Airport is a city-owned public-use airport located three miles northwest of the central business district of La Porte, a city in Harris County, Texas, United States.- Facilities and aircraft :...

 is located in the La Porte city limits.

The closest major airports with commercial airline service are William P. Hobby Airport
William P. Hobby Airport
William P. Hobby Airport is a public airport in Houston, Texas, located from Downtown Houston. The airport covers and has four runways. Hobby Airport is Houston's oldest commercial airport and was the city's primary air terminal until the opening of Houston Intercontinental Airport in 1969...

 and George Bush Intercontinental Airport
George Bush Intercontinental Airport
George Bush Intercontinental Airport, is a Class B international airport in Houston, Texas, serving the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area, the sixth-largest metropolitan area in the United States. Located north of Downtown Houston between Interstate 45 and U.S. Highway 59...

 in Houston.

La Porte is linked to Interstate 10 (see map) by State Highway 146
Texas State Highway 146
State Highway 146, or SH 146, is a north–south highway in southeastern Texas beginning in Livingston, starting at US 59 and proceeds south to Liberty, where it meets US 90...

, crossing the Fred Hartman Bridge
Fred Hartman Bridge
The Fred Hartman Bridge or Baytown Bridge is a cable-stayed bridge in the U.S. state of Texas, spanning the Houston Ship Channel. The bridge carries 2.6 miles of State Highway 146, between the cities of Baytown, Texas and La Porte, Texas...

 into the nearby city of Baytown
Baytown, Texas
Baytown is a city within Harris County and partially in Chambers County in the Gulf Coast region of the U.S. state of Texas. Located within the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area, it lies along both State Highway 146 and Interstate 10. As of 2010, Baytown had an population of 71,802...

; the bridge was built in 1995, replacing the Baytown Tunnel
Baytown Tunnel
The Baytown Tunnel or Baytown – La Porte Tunnel was a two-lane underwater motor-vehicle tunnel connecting Baytown and La Porte, two suburbs of Houston, Texas. Completed in 1953, it traveled northeast-southwest underneath the Houston Ship Channel and had a length of...

, to allow deepening of the Houston Ship Channel
Houston Ship Channel
The Houston Ship Channel, located in Houston, Texas, is part of the Port of Houston—one of the United States's busiest seaports. The channel is the conduit for ocean-going vessels between the Houston-area shipyards and the Gulf of Mexico.-Overview:...


La Porte is located on the northwest end of Galveston Bay
Galveston Bay
Galveston Bay is a large estuary located along the upper coast of Texas in the United States. It is connected to the Gulf of Mexico and is surrounded by sub-tropic marshes and prairies on the mainland. The water in the Bay is a complex mixture of sea water and fresh water which supports a wide...

 at the mouth of Buffalo Bayou
Buffalo Bayou
Buffalo Bayou is a main waterway flowing through Houston, in Harris County, Texas, USA. It begins in Katy, Fort Bend County, Texas and flows approximately east to the Houston Ship Channel and then into Galveston Bay and the Gulf of Mexico...

 and the San Jacinto River.

External links

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