15 Best Things to Do in Crockett, TX

Crockett, TX
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The city of Crockett is the seat of Houston County, Texas.

Despite being a relatively small city, Crockett brims with a rich history.

It’s the fifth-oldest city in Texas, while Houston County itself is the state’s oldest county.

The town got its name from the folk hero and frontiersman Davy Crockett.

He had made camp nearby on his way to the Alamo.

In 1836, the Texas Revolution soldier Andrew Edwards Gossett gave the area’s land to establish a town.

His father and brother joined him in the donation.

The three of them had also known Crockett, which is why they named the town after him.

Today, Crockett hosts several historical attractions and modern shopping options.

Likewise, the place holds various natural attractions.

For example, you can explore the Davy Crockett National Forest nearby.

Do you want to know more about Crockett, TX?

Here’s a list of the best things to do in the city:

Marvel at the Beauty of the Downes-Aldrich House

Exterior of Downes-Aldrich House
Renelibrary, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

One of the most beautiful houses in the entire Houston County is in Crockett, Texas.

This home is the Downes-Aldrich House, constructed between 1891 to 1893.

Built along with the popular Eastlake Victorian style, the home became the residence of the first settlers in the area.

The gorgeous house teems with historical importance; locals say it also contains supernatural presences.

A couple of Crockett’s early families lived in the wooden house from the late 1800s to the mid-1900s.

James Elbert Downes and his wife Lizzie Downes built the house.

Later, Armistead Albert Aldrich and his wife Willie moved into the building, where they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.

Mary Aldrich was the last known family member to have lived in the house.

Go Hunting at the M.Y. Ranch Hunting Preserve

Since 1915, the M.Y. Ranch Hunting Preserve has provided terrific hog hunting opportunities in the East Texas area.

This family-owned business spans more than 1,000 acres of green sloping hills, along with thick forests of pine and hardwood.

Likewise, you can explore scenic roads, lakes, and fertile lands.

If you haven’t gone hunting before, bring your buds for a Texas hunting vacation.

The preserve contains several types of games you can hunt while enjoying your privacy.

Likewise, the area offers free-range hog hunting with zero trophy fees.

All the hogs in the preserve are wild and free-range, so you can truly feel the thrill of the hunt.

Celebrate Milestones at the Crockett Civic Center

In 1987, the city of Crockett built the Civic Center, which has become the community’s main hub for live entertainment.

The center hosts various theater productions and live concerts every year.

Likewise, the center is a flexible multi-purpose facility that can host other major events.

The fully equipped center has plenty of amenities to ensure events go off without a hitch.

If you plan to celebrate an important occasion in a quiet setting, the Crockett Civic Center might be for you.

The Civic Center spans 22,000 square feet, and it can accommodate full banquets with up to 400 guests.

Its theatre-style seating can also fit a thousand guests.

There’s also a stage if you need it.

Celebrate family milestones by booking a party at the Crockett Civic Center!

Learn Local History at the Houston County Visitor Center and Museum

Sign marker of Houston County Visitor Center and Museum
Idawriter, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Start your Crockett adventure by checking out the Houston County Visitor Center and Museum.

You’ll find various historical artifacts inside, from railroad items and oxbows. ‘

Likewise, the museum takes you back to the days when cotton reigned supreme, with displays of farming tools and an old gin located nearby.

The area used to be a major spot for farming, whose primary crop was cotton.

Besides exhibits, the museum also holds gallery tours, teacher workshops, and lectures.

Spend the Day at the Davy Crockett Memorial Park

This historic park is another site devoted to the legendary Davy Crockett, dedicated in 1937.

Bring your family and spend an afternoon relaxing or walking around.

You can follow the running trail surrounding the park or stop by the historic markers arranged in specific places.

Likewise, the Veteran’s Memorial Wall allows you to pay tribute to the gallant men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice to protect freedom.

The park also has picnic areas and playgrounds for the kids.

You can also take a dip at the swimming pool if the sun gets too much.

Step Back in Time at the Monroe-Crook House

Another historic house you can visit at Crockett is the Monroe-Crook House, a masterpiece of the Greek Revival Style.

Built in 1854, the house is now a museum that showcases the rich history of Houston County.

Armistead Thompson Mason Monroe, President James Monroe’s grandnephew, built the house.

He designed the house to look like Ash Lawn, his granduncle’s famous house in Albemarle County, Virginia.

During his life, Armistead was an early pioneer of flipping real estate or buying property and then renovating and selling it.

After four years of construction, the Monroes sold the house.

Several owners bought the house until the early 1970s.

Today, the Monroe-Crook House is now a Texas Historic Landmark.

It also belongs to the National Registry of Historic Places.

Pay Tribute to a Folk Legend at the David Crockett Spring

Marker of David Crockett Spring
Billy Hathorn, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The American folk hero Davy Crockett stopped by the Crockett area in early 1836 on his way to the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas.

He joined the Alamo Commander Jim Bowie, whose forces defended the mission from the attacking Mexican Army.

During the siege, the Texans refused to surrender, forcing the Mexican general Santa Ana to overrun the mission and “give no quarter.”

Davy Crockett and the rest of the American soldiers died in the battle.

Today, the city of Crockett honors his heroism with a water fountain and plaque placed on the spot where he camped in January 1836.

Pay tribute to this American legend by stopping to remember their sacrifice at the Alamo.

Bring Your Folks to the Crockett Family Resort

If you want to spend the night under the stars in Crockett, bring your family to the Crockett Family Resort, right on the banks of Houston County Lake.

Enjoy the simple life in the small city of Crockett.

This resort offers 116 RV sites with 15 adjoining kitchenettes, and another nine cabins placed around the park.

You can also stay in five upscale Park Models, two family-oriented cottages, and another two dorms with 11 beds each.

Likewise, the park hosts two clubhouses that can accommodate 130 people, each building equipped with a kitchen.

The second clubhouse has a fireplace, perfect when the lakeside night gets cold.

If you want more dining options, you can grab a pizza from the resort’s own Hunts Brothers Pizza.

Listen to Live Country Music at the Camp Street Café & Store

Wind down your Crockett trip by having a drink and listening to soulful country music at the Camp Street Café & Store in downtown Crockett.

Visit during the weekend to hear performers from around the world play a variety of musical styles.

You might hear bluegrass, the good old blues, and even Celtic music.

The building itself teems with history, operating from inside an old tin building with a false front constructed in 1931.

In the past, the store used to sit near the mule barn and wagon yard, where freighters and visiting families camped on their shopping trips.

Over the years, the building has hosted legendary musicians such as the Texas bluesman Sam “Lightnin’” Hopkins and Frankie Lee Sims.

Exercise Your Creativity with the Piney Woods Fine Arts Association

In 1991, the Piney Woods Fine Arts Association began its mission to promote and cultivate the visual and performing arts in Houston County.

This mission comes from the knowledge that art appreciation can enrich the lives of everybody in the world.

Today, the association continues to host programs and world-class performances held at the Crockett Civic Center.

You can bring your kids to the association and let them indulge their imaginations.

During the summer, they can join the art workshop or even join the Missoula Children’s Theatre.

Likewise, the association hosts the Houston County Youth Talent Showcase.

If you think your kid’s got what it takes, then bring them to the Piney Woods Fine Arts Association.

Grab a Hearty Meal at the Davy Crockett Bar & Grill

If you’d prefer a filling meal with your ice-cold drink, then head to the Davy Crockett Bar & Grill.

Their daily specials of American and Southern favorites will surely hit the spot after a full day’s trip.

For example, you can enjoy their Family Catfish Dinner, a special meal comprising ten American Catfish filets with coleslaw, fries, tartar sauce, and a bag of pork skins.

Otherwise, you can enjoy the Family Chicken Fried Steak Dinner.

The place also sells beer and spirits, with happy hour running from 3 pm to 7 pm.

Make this spot your last stop before turning in for the night.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Spot Wildlife at the Davy Crockett National Forest

Trail lined with trees at Davy Crockett National Forest
William L. Farr, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

In 1936, President Franklin Roosevelt declared the 160,000-acre Davy Crockett National Forest a National Forest.

This massive area comprises various recreation areas, along with dense woodlands and rushing streams.

Likewise, several species of wildlife make this forest their home.

You can find this forest in the city of Kennard in Houston County, Texas.

The city sits just 17 minutes away from Crockett.

Besides hiking and camping, the forest offers a unique wildlife spotting experience.

Woodsy area of Davy Crockett National Forest
Realest Nature / Shutterstock.com

You can find deers, quails, doves, and squirrels scurrying about the forest.

Likewise, you might spot the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker at selected spots within the area.

You can also visit the Alabama Creek Wildlife Management Area, comprising 14,500 acres.

This area supports and maintains a sustainable game population.

You can also go hunting there.

Most of all, the area teaches guests how each animal contributes to supporting an entire ecosystem.

Go Exploring at the Mission Tejas State Park

Exterior of Mission Tejas
Larry D. Moore, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This time, drive 16 minutes from Crockett to the city of Grapeland, Texas, where you can find the Mission Tejas State Park.

This park sits halfway between Dallas and Houston, at the north end of the Davy Crockett National Forest.

What can you do at this park?

During your visit, you can go hiking, fishing, camping, or geocaching.

Interior of Mission Tejas
Larry D. Moore, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Likewise, you can simply observe nature or learn about the area’s history.

The history buffs in your group will surely love seeing artifacts from the early Spanish efforts to settle the area.

For example, you’ll find the remains of a log cabin built in the early 1800s.

Then, you can go fishing along San Pedro Creek.

You can bring your gear or rent from the park. Fishing here also doesn’t require a license.

Welcome sign of Mission Tejas State Park
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Learn Cultural History at the Caddo Mounds State Historic Site

This one’s a little far, but your journey will be worth it. You need to travel 35 minutes from Crockett to the town of Alto, Texas.

This town hosts the majestic Caddo Mounds State Historic Site, an important cultural marker for the Mound Builder Culture. Broaden your horizons by checking out this landmark.

The Hasinai group of Caddo Native Americans settled in an area 26 miles west of modern-day Nacogdoches.

During their time in the village, they erected earthen mounds that filled the dense Pineywoods landscape.

They used these mounds for major ceremonies and rituals.

Today, three mounds remain, and visitors can check them out to learn more about the lifestyles and history of these historical peoples.

Explore the Outdoors at the Ratcliff Lake Recreational Area

Scenic view of Ratcliff Lake Recreational Area
Norm Lane / Shutterstock.com

In 1936, the Civilian Conservation Corps built the Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area.

The property surrounds the gorgeous 45-acre lake that used to be a long pond.

From 1902 to 1920, the Central Coal and Coke Company used this lake as a primary source of water for their operations.

Today, the area offers plenty of activities for outgoing tourists.

The amphitheater of Ratcliff Lake Recreational Area
Norm Lane / Shutterstock.com

You can spend the night there or simply enjoy a hot lunch with family or friends.

Likewise, the lake is open for swimming and fishing.

Inland activities include hiking along the 20-mile Four C National Recreation Trail, which leads to the Neches Bluff Overlook.

Bring your camera with you if you decide to go hiking.

Welcome sign of Ratcliff Lake Recreational Area texas
Larry D. Moore, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Final Thoughts

The historic city of Crockett brims with significant sites, with sprinkles of nature and wildlife spots.

Likewise, it is also a launching pad for nearby towns and cities which show unique sides of the Lone Star State.

Spend a quiet weekend at Crockett the first chance you get!