2000 Census - 70
Etoile Texas History:
The community was settled in 1876 by Reverend James Sims who built a Baptist Church at Macedonia Springs. The community of Macedonia developed around the church and the springs. Transportation to the town consisted of poor roads and Angelina River steamboats that docked at Brown’s Ferry just outside of town. Mail arrived via horseback from nearby Cherino. The Etoile post office was established in 1886. The town paid for weekly mail deliveries from Nacogdoches. By 1915, the town had a cotton gin, two general stores and 300 residents. By 1940, the population was 400. When rail service was discontinued in 1950, the population dropped to 50. The completion of the Sam Rayburn Reservoir in 1965 aided the town’s economy by adding tourism to the town’s economic base. During the 1980s Etoile comprised a population of seventy, a few stores, and several bait houses, marinas, boat stalls, and campgrounds. It was mainly a retirement community. Some residents raised beef cattle and chickens. In the early 1990s Etoile reported a population of seventy, with seven businesses and a post office. Etoile is located on the western edge of the Angelina National Forest and on the Sam Rayburn Reservoir at the intersections of FM 226 and CR 445 and 560, 19.8 miles slightly northeast of Lufkin, 23.2 miles southeast of Nacogdoches, 45 miles southwest of Center, 26.8 miles southwest of San Augustine, 56 miles north of Woodville, and 27.6 miles north of Zavalla, Texas.
The months of April through October are the worst months for mosquitoes. Rub yourself with Bounce Fabric Softener sheets, or with Vicks Vapor Rub or pure Mexican Vanilla. Some swear taking a daily vitamin B-1 pill works to repel mosquitoes. Mosquitoes love you when you eat bananas. Mosquitoes are also attracted to some perfumes, including perfumed shampoos. Planting Marigolds in your yard repels mosquitoes. On a picnic table try covering the bottom of a white plate with “lemon fresh” dish wash soap, or use citronella candles. Home Depot sometimes sells the candles in small metal buckets. The ThermaCell Mosquito Repellant is also quite effective in ridding small outdoor areas of mosquitos. Dynatrap Company makes a large standing electric mosquito machine that works like electric bug zappers. It is very successful at making large areas mosquito free. When purchasing mosquito repellent buy those with the ingredient N, N-diethyl-M-toluamide. The fine net clothing available from Cabela’s and other sporting goods stores is highly effective in preventing mosquito bites.
Birding - TEXAS PRAIRIES AND PINEYWOODS EAST BIRDING TRAIL:
Stephen F. Austin Loop: Nacogdoches, Lufkin
Bird Checklist for Pineywoods of Eastern Texas
Nacogdoches County Bird Checklist with Photos
Angelina Forest & Sam Rayburn Lake Bird Checklist
Toledo Bend Reservoir Bird Checklist
Angelina National Forest Information:
This forest is one of four national forests located in Texas. The forest is located in Jasper, San Augustine, Angelina and Nacogdoches Counties. The main office for these forests is located in Lufkin. The Angelina Forest district office is located in Zavalla. The forest borders the north and south shores of the 114,400 acre Sam Rayburn Reservoir on the Angelina River, and encompasses the towns of Broaddus and Zavalla The gravesite of John H. Graham, an early settler to the area, is located in a small cemetery overlooking Graham Creek. The old Aldridge Sawmill is located at the end of the Sawmill Hiking Trail near the Neches River, and south of the Boykin Springs Recreation Area. Located within the forest are Boulton Lake, Sexton Pond, and Boykin Springs. Recreation facilities are available at the Caney Creek, Sandy Creek, Harvey Creek and Townsend Recreation Areas, and at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer parks. Wildlife species include bear, deer, squirrel, fish, wild turkey, quail, waterfowl, and other birds. Lake Sam Rayburn provides habitat for the threatened bald eagle. The endangered Red-cockaded Woodpecker is found throughout the pine forest. The woodpecker makes a home by pecking cavities in the pine trees. The resulting drainage of pitch protects it from predatory snakes.For more complete forest information, go to the Angelina National Forest Home Page. Facilities Map
The Angelina River is located in the East Texas Pineywoods Region. The lake is formed by the junction of Barnhardt and Shawnee creeks three miles northwest of Laneville in southwest central Rusk County. The river flows southeast for 110 miles, forming the boundaries between Cherokee and Nacogdoches, Angelina and Nacogdoches, and Angelina and San Augustine counties. It empties into the Neches River twelve miles north of Jasper in northwestern Jasper County. Lake Steinhagen is located on the Neches River; the Sam Rayburn Reservoir (formerly McGee Bend Reservoir) is located on the south end of the Angelina River. The stream was named for a Hasinai Indian girl whom Spanish missionaries called Angelina. The river was navigable from Ayish Bayou nearly to Nacogdoches in the 1840s and furnished a significant means of transportation to settlers. The earliest attempts at commercial navigation of the Angelina began in 1844 when Moses and Robert Patton, using a barge-like craft known as the Thomas J. Rusk, transported 192 bales of cotton from Pattonia Landing (located on the Angelina twelve miles southeast of Nacogdoches) by way of the Neches to Sabine Pass. The Patton brothers continued to operate their barge service for three years, hauling cotton and other produce downriver and returning with provisions and merchandise from Galveston and New Orleans. In 1847 they purchased a steamship, the Angelina, capable of hauling 350 to 400 bales of cotton and making the round trip to Sabine Pass in fifteen to twenty days. Several other steamboats plied the Angelina during the heyday of river traffic around the time of the Civil War. Towns on or near the river include Nacogdoches, Laneville, Rusk, Cushing, Alto, Wells, Douglass, Jasper, Bevilport, Lufkin, and others. The river flows on the edge of the Angelina National Forest, and just a few miles east of the Davy Crockett National Forest; the Sabine National Forest sits on the Texas-Louisiana Border a few miles east of the river. Fish Stocking History
Sam Rayburn Reservoir Information:
The 114,500 surface acre Sam Rayburn Reservoir was formerly known as McGee Bend Dam and Reservoir. In 1963, it was renamed the Sam Rayburn Reservoir in honor of the late Speaker of the House. The lake was impounded on the Angelina River in 1965. It is the largest lake located within the borders of Texas. It features approximately 750 miles of shoreline, ranges between 10 and 80 feet in depth, and is bordered on the north and south shores by the Angelina National Forest. Known for its legendary bass fishing, and excellent catfish, hybrid stripe bass, and crappie fishing, it annually hosts more than 300 fishing tournaments. Volunteer positions are available. The lake is located approximately 12 miles northwest of Jasper, Texas. FM 255 crosses the dam.For more complete lake information, go to the Sam Rayburn Reservoir Home Page. Lake Location Map Current Lake Level TPWD Public Access Facilities Map
Etoile Park, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Etoile:
Amenities include a four lane boat ramp suitable for all types of boats, and a 30 vehicle capacity parking lot. The camping area has been closed due to budget restrictions. The park is managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. (409) 384-5716. The park is located on the north shore of the Reservoir in Nacogdoches County, two miles east of Etoile off SH 103.
Marion’s Ferry Park, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Etoile:
Amenities include a four lane boat ramp, and a 20 vehicle capacity parking lot; no camping. There is also a Texas State Historical Marker commemorating the town of Marion, the first county seat of Angelina County. The boat ramp is operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. (409) 384-5716. The boat ramp is located west of Etoile on the west shore of the Reservoir in Angelina County off FM 1669, two miles north of SH 103.
Shirley Creek Park & Gas Dock, Nacogdoches County, Etoile:
The two lane boat ramp is suitable for launching all boat types. The boat ramp is open year round; no fees apply. Other amenities include restrooms, fish cleaning stations, covered boat slips, a store selling live bait, certified fishing scales, courtesy docks, a gas dock, picnic areas, a playground, RV and tent campsites, log cabins, fishing equipment rentals and repairs, and a café serving three meals a day, including a country breakfast; hours vary. The boat ramp is operated by Nacogdoches County and a private concession. (936) 854-2233. 23177 FM 226, Etoile, 75944. From Lufkin go 20 miles east on SH 103. Go south on FM 226 and drive to the end of the road.
Ralph McAlister Park, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Broaddus & Etoile:
Amenities include a four lane boat ramp suitable for all boat types, a vault type restroom, and a 20 vehicle capacity parking lot. Open year round; a fee applies. Bird sightings include Bald Eagles, Common Loons, Earned and Horned Grebes, ducks, cormorants and spring and fall migrants. The park is operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. (409) 384-5716. The park is located on the north shore of the Reservoir in Nacogdoches County off SH 103, 6.5 miles east of Etoile.
Alazan Bayou WMA Information:
This 2,063 acre Wildlife Management Area was purchased in 1991 to preserve mature bottomland hardwood forests adjacent to the Angelina River.Habitat consists of these forests and fields adjacent to the Angelina River, and Loco Bayou and Moral Creek. Hunting is available on the Blount and the Old River Tracts. Wildlife includes waterfowl, white-tailed deer, woodcock, rabbits, turkey, squirrels and feral hogs. Hunting for deer with firearms is prohibited. Primitive camping is permitted in designated campsites. Horseback riding is allowed March 16-September 26th. All horses must have proof of a negative Coggins test. All visitors are required to register with the park. There are three entrances along FM 2782 with information and registration stations located at each entrance. The only other amenity is the ADA compliant wildlife observation platform. Bring water and insect repellant. (936) 569-8547. The office is located at 1805 E. Lufkin, Lufkin, Texas. For more complete WMA information, go to the Alazan Bayou WMA Home Page. The WMA is located approximately 6.2 miles southwest of Nacogdoches. From Nacogdoches take U.S. 59 South for approximately 6.2 miles. Go west on FM 2782 for 1.1 miles.
Bannister Wildlife Management Area Information:
This 25,695 acre Wildlife Management Area is located in the Angelina National Forest on a peninsula extending into the Sam Rayburn Reservoir. It is separated from the lake by private and national forest service lands. Because the WMA is a designated Eastern Turkey restoration site, some WMA sections are closed during turkey brooding season. Only hikers and bikers are permitted in these areas at this time. Several primitive camping areas are available. The WMA is operated under a Memorandum of Agreement with the U.S. Forest Service. Public hunting of white-tailed deer, feral hog, turkey (Spring Eastern Turkey), waterfowl, woodcock, rails, gallinules, snipe, dove, squirrel, quail, rabbits, hares, predators, furbearers, and frogs is permitted. A trapping season is available for furbearers and predators only. Activities include hiking, biking, horseback riding and hunting. Equestrian use is restricted during hunting season. During hunting season hikers must wear orange clothing and camping is restricted to designated campgrounds. During non-hunting season campers may camp anywhere there is parking. Fishing is permitted, but is not desirable. The WMA is open year round. (936) 639-8544. U.S. Forest Service Information: (409) 639-8620. The office is located at 1342 S. Wheeler Street, Jasper, Texas 75951. The WMA is located 25 miles east of Lufkin. For more complete WMA information, go to the Bannister WMA Home Page. From Lufkin take SH 103 to FM 1277, turn south on FM 1277 and drive three miles to Forest Service Road 300. An information station is located on the east side of the intersection. Bannister WMA Map
Learn to Camp at Texas Parks & Wildlife State Parks' Outdoor Family Camping Workshops:
Theseworkshops are family camping sessions designed to teach camping skills to those who do not know how to camp; everything is provided from tent to broom. Gear includes a coffee pot, dishes, cooking pots, a camp stove, a battery operated fan and lantern, air mattresses, and a tent. Basic skills taught include pitching a tent, making a campfire, cooking on a propane camp stove, geocaching and using a GPS. Wildlife viewing, fishing and kayaking are available depending on the park and its facilities. After making reservations, families will be sent a packet of information which includes a grocery list. Those interested in this program may sign up for E-Mail Updates on Currently Scheduled Workshops. (512) 389-8903. Calendar
Hunt Texas Online Connection:
More than 95% of Texas land is privately owned, making it hard for hunters to find affordable hunting opportunities. The Texas Parks and Wildlife has a huge public hunting program, and has developed a new service to help hunters find hunting places. This new service is provided free by the TPWD. It allows landowners to list available hunting leases or spots that have opened up, and allows hunters to find private hunting leases according to their preferences.
Hunting, Texas Parks and Wildlife, General Hunting Information
Hunting, Public Hunting on State Lands, TPWD
Hunting Season by Animal
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Donations