Built on Oil (visit was after Hurricane Ike)
In the original days, Port Arthur was a ranching and lumber town, but with the discovery of oil, it quickly changed into a massive industrial area.
The plant's smoke stacks and columns dot the horizon, particularly if you see them from the heights of Bridge City's bridge!
This city went through its boom and has several wonderful old colonial style homes along the Lakeshore. However, as you go back away from the water, the residences gradually get more depressed and show people living meager lives.
Unfortunately, Hurricane Ike (2008) decimated the local communities. High flood waters have ruined the homes of most people and left the infrastructure in poor condition. Today, the town is basically a ghost town, since most people left for new start further inland.
If you come to this area, I recommend you stay up in Beaumont. There are many more options for accommodations, food and entertainment.
(for more pictures, feel free to visit my USA Gallery. If you enjoy the pictures, please leave a comment.)