First Texas Artificial Gas Plant: Texas Historical Marker
Jefferson Gas Light Company, chartered 1870 for public and domestic service, used retorts 7-foot iron drums with small necks to make illuminating gas. (One retort stood on this site.) Loaded with pine knots and rich pinewood, a retort was heated; its gas was forced into mains by use of a pressure drum. Streetlights on hollow posts, 300 feet apart, were 10-candle glass globes, lighted by a man on a ladder. These and gaslights in houses gave Jefferson then largest inland port and second largest city in Texas the state's first gaslight system. Marker Location: Lafayette and Market St.