Forecasters say the gusts ranged from 41 mph in Morgans Point, across the bay from Galveston, to between 60 and 70 mph in Huntsville, about 70 miles north of Houston. The weather service reported trees down and roofs ripped off buildings in areas near Huntsville and Cleveland.
Gusts of 53 mph were measured at Houston's Bush Intercontinental Airport.
But by the time the sun rose, the storms had calmed and Houston woke to a cloudy day with temperatures dipping to the upper 30s.
Farther north, an ice storm closed Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport for more than two hours.