A long, narrow cabin located on top of the skylight roof and surmounted by the pilothouse. This is the customary location of the typical western packet's texas. In it are found the staterooms to berth the crew: usually it was divided into three sections, the forward end being reserved for the captain's quarters, the mid-section for the officers, the rear part for the (at that time so called) "colored cabin help". This rear portion often was called the coon pen.

The "texas" has got it's name in honor of the state of Texas as at the same time the new type of deck was added to many steamboats the state of Texas became part of the United States of America.