The City of Zavalla is located in southeastern Angelina County in Deep East Texas on U.S. Highway 69, and Highways 63 and 147, southeast of Lufkin, north of Woodville, and northwest of Jasper. Sam Rayburn Reservoir lies just to the east of Zavalla.
Zavalla was established in 1900 on the Texas and New Orleans Railroad. The community was named for its location on the impresario grant made to Lorenzo de Zavala. In the early 1900s timber and cotton were vital to the economy. In 1975, Zavalla was incorporated when population growth associated with Lake Sam Rayburn prompted the organization of a city government.
|Population||603 residents in the 2020 Federal Census|
Lake Sam Rayburn
Sam Rayburn Reservoir is located just to the west of Zavalla on the Angelina River, and its dam is located in Jasper County approximately 15 miles north of Jasper. The lake has a surface area of 114,500 acres, and a maximum depth of 80 feet. The lake was impounded in 1965.
The most popular game fish at Sam Rayburn Reservoir is the largemouth bass; an excellent year-round fishery exists. Habitat in Sam Rayburn Reservoir consists of submerged aquatic vegetation, standing timber, and flooded terrestrial vegetation.
Shown to the right is an overhead view of the Lake Rayburn dam (photo courtesy of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)
While visiting the Zavalla area, you may want to take other interesting day trips in several directions: