Connell is on the Southern Pacific Railroad east of State Highway 105 and eight miles east of Beaumont in west central Orange County. The western end of a siding on the Texas and New Orleans Railroad was called Diana as early as 1905. At that time the Anderson brothers owned a mill 1½ miles to the east, at the approximate site of what would later be called Connell. By 1913 the eastern end of the siding was known as Connell, after the president of the Reese-Corriher Lumber Company, G. H. Connell. The company's new mill at Connell had a daily capacity of 75,000 board feet. Also in 1913 a post office was established for the community. In 1920 the West Lumber Company of Harris County acquired the Connell mill. At that time the local population was estimated to be 400. As available timber was cut out, however, sawmill operations slowed throughout the area. The West Lumber Company began selling its lands and moving its machinery at Connell by 1924, when the local post office was discontinued. During the 1960s and 1970s the old sawmill site became an increasingly popular residential area, as the population from Vidor, Rose City, and Beaumont pushed farther east.
Adapted from the official Handbook of Texas, a state encyclopedia developed by the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA). It is an authoritative source of trusted historical records.
Robert Wooster | © Texas State Historical Association
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