Texas state forests are working forests taken care of with sound scientific forest management that protects and keeps in existence native flora and fauna. Healthy and productive state forests that exist today are the result of public and industrial forest stewardship following heavy logging, devastating wildfires and insect epidemics common at the turn of the 20th century.

    The primary purpose of state forests and arboretums is to serve as educational resources for Texans and visitors.

     + I.D. Fairchild State Forest

    The property consists of approximately 2,360 acres in various scattered parcels in the western portion of Cherokee County. The largest main tract is located just a few miles west of Maydelle, Texas, and is bisected by State Highway 84.The only sawmill ever operated by the State of Texas was located on the site. Like other Texas state forests, the Fairchild is a working, demonstration forest and has served as a site for numerous silvicultural and research studies. The forest also hosts a small population of the federally-listed endangered species, red-cockaded woodpecker.

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     + W. Goodrich Jones State Forest

    W. Goodrich Jones State Forest is a 1,722-acre forest funded in 1926 by appropriations by the Texas Legislature with stipulations that the tracts be used for research, demonstration and education, serving as examples of working forests to Texas landowners. Today, on top of research and demonstration activities, the Jones State Forest plays host to a large population of the red-cockaded woodpecker, a federally listed endangered species. Forest management activities focus on habitat protection for this important species of the southern yellow pine forest ecosystem.

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     + John Henry Kirby Memorial State Forest

    In 1929, TFS received a gift of 600 acres of forestland from lumber baron John Henry Kirby. Initially known as State Forest #4, the deed for the property stipulates a portion of revenues from the tract must be donated to the Former Student Association of Texas A&M University, for student loan purposes. Since 1949, over $730,000 has been generated for the Former Student Association student loan program.

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     + Masterson State Forest

    This 519-acre Jasper County forest was acquired through donation from Leonora Masterson in 1985. The primary purpose of the forest is resource education and forestry demonstration for all Texans and visitors. A portion of the forest has been set aside for progeny tests with the purpose of improving genetics in southern yellow pine.

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     + E.O. Siecke State Forest

    The original 1,722 acres of what was initially called State Forest #1 were acquired in 1924 by the Forestry Department of Texas A&M University. In 1951, State Forest #1 was dedicated the E.O. Siecke State Forest, recognizing the contributions of the second director and state forester, Eric O. Siecke. A number of dignitaries were on hand at the ceremony, including Texas Governor Alan Shivers. 

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