The city of Kilgore is in East Texas and was founded in 1872. It lies within both Gregg and Risk counties.

Kilgore got its start when the International-Great Northern Railroad completed a rail line between Palestine and Longview. Constantine Buckley Kilgore, who is the town's namesake, sold 174 acres of land to the railroad. From here the community began to grow.

With the impacts of the Great Depression and the declining cost of cotton, however, Kilgore began to diminish. It was when Columbus M. Joiner struck oil, discovering the East Texas oil field, that Kilgore quickly grew.

At the height of the oil boom, there were over 1,100 oil rigs in Kilgore. The boom was about over by the 1940s, but oil production still plays a large role in Kilgore's economy today.

Kilgore Facts 

Population: 13,383 (2021)

Area Code: 903

Zip Code: 75662

Elevation: 358′

Mayor: R.E. Spradlin III

Known for: East Texas Oil Field

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