CHEROKEE COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) - East Texas certainly isn’t known for scenic lookouts, save for a popular spot just north of Jacksonville. This week, Love’s Lookout is the subject of A Mark in Texas History by Mark Scirto.
Love’s Lookout is a scenic ridge that is part of a longer, flat-topped hill that extends nine miles. In the pre-Civil War ear, the area was a popular recreation area for the townspeople of Larissa. But popularity boomed with the advent of the automobile.
After 1910, the area became known as Love’s Lookout and was named after Wesley Love, who bought the area. After Love’s death, his wife donated part of the property to the state of Texas for a state park.
When the state didn’t build a park, the city of Jacksonville purchased the property, along with an adjoining tract of land to turn it into a city park. The park had constructed roads and trails, an amphitheater, picnic facilities, and even a pool that was enjoyed in the 1940s. All that is long gone now, but in 1967, the Love family donated the original tract of land over to the highway department, which has developed it into a roadside park.
The historical commission honored the park with a marker in 1978. Today, the City of Jacksonville is working on bike trails for the area.
If you’ve driven on U.S. Highway 69 between Jacksonville and Tyler, you can’t miss it. Love’s Lookout is just north of Jacksonville and on the east side of the highway.