Tarrant County TXGenWeb - Historical Markers - pg. 5


Historical Markers in Tarrant County

Page 5

Saint Joseph Hospital

Located at 1401 S. Main St., Fort Worth.

In the 1880s Fort Worth was a thriving railroad town. The Missouri Pacific Railroad Company established an infirmary near its headquarters to care for its employees. In 1885 the Congregation of Sisters of Charity of Incarnate Word, based in San Antonio, was asked to take over operation of the infirmary. Ten nuns traveled to Fort Worth to begin work at the Infirmary. When the work of the railroad was completed in 1889, the Congregation purchased the facility and it was renamed St. Joseph's Infirmary. St. Joseph's was Fort Worth's first general hospital, and from the outset ministered to charity patients. A new three-story brick structure was built in 1898, and over the years additional facilities were built to house the hospital's expanding services. The name was changed in 1930 to St. Joseph's Hospital, and again in 1966 to Saint Joseph Hospital. In addition to direct medical care, the hospital's programs have grown to include training for health care professionals as well as educational and counseling services for patients and their families. The county's first hospice program for terminally ill patients was inaugurated here in 1980. For over 100 years this hospital has served the community.


Santa Fe Depot

Located at 1501 Jones, Fort Worth.

Built 1899. Beaux Arts design features native stone banding. When intact, north windows of painted glass depicted travel from Pony Express to steam locomotives. Visitors here have included such world figures as Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower and Lyndon B. Johnson. Depot was used by six railroad companies. As of 1970, Santa Fe served Texas with greater trackage than any other railroad, 5102 miles.


Shelton Building

Located at 901 Houston St, Fort Worth.

This building was constructed in 1900 for Robert G. Johnson, who was acting on behalf of his wards, the children of Albert D. Evans. It was first leased to G.Y. Smith, who opened the "Daylight Store", a general merchandise establishment. In 1910, after the property was purchased by John M. Shelton, a third floor was added to the original two-story structure. From that same year until 1936 the building was leased to S.H. Kress and Company. Following major architectural remodeling in 1937, the structure was occupied by another variety store, McCrorys.


Sinclair Building

Located at 512 Main St., Fort Worth.

Pioneer oilman Richard O. Dulaney hired noted Fort Worth architect Wiley G. Clarkson to design this building. It acquired its name from the Sinclair Oil Company which leased offices here soon after the building's completion in 1930. The billion-dollar Sinclair-Prairie Oil Company moved its headquarters here in 1932. Built during the city's oil and gas-inspired golden era, this High-Rise Art Deco building features zig-zag motif, Mayan accents and terra cotta detailing.


Site of Tarrant County's First Courthouse, Birdville

Located in the 6000 block of Broadway, near Birdville High School, Haltom City.

First (1849-1856) county seat, Tarrant County, with 80 acres for public use. Courthouse foundation was laid on site donated by G. Akers and W. Norris. After courts upheld--in Walker vs. Tarrant County--vote in bitterly contested 1856 election, Fort Worth became the county seat. (1968).


Tarrant County Courthouse

Located at Main at Weatherford Streets, Fort Worth.

Designed by firm of Gunn & Curtis and built by the Probst Construction Company of Chicago, 1893-1895. This red Texas granite building, in Renaissance Revival style, closely resembles the Texas State Capital with the exception of the clock tower. The cost was $408,840 and citizens considered it such a public extravagance that a new County Commissioners' Court was elected in 1894.


Tarrant County Criminal Courts Building

Located at 200 W. Belknap, Fort Worth.

Built in 1917-18, this structure is located on land upon which old Camp Worth was constructed in 1849. The noted Fort Worth architectural firm of Sanguinet and Staats designed the building, incorporating elements of the Beaux Arts and Classical Revival styles. In addition to a criminal courtroom, it originally housed the jail and gallows, a jail hospital, mental wards, and offices for the Sheriff, District Attorney, and District Clerk.


Tarrant County State Bank Building

Located at 332 S. Main Street, Grapevine.

Constructed in 1897, this building served as retail space until it was purchased and remodeled by the Tarrant County State Bank in 1921. It became the offices of the Grapevine Sun newspaper in 1947. Displaying Classical Revival style elements, the brick structure features a central inset entry, stepped parapet of brick with stone coping and detail, and four Classical pilasters supporting a dentilled cornice of stone.


Texas & Pacific Terminal Building

Located at Lancaster & Throckmorton St., Fort Worth.

A line of the Texas & Pacific Railroad was extended to Fort Worth in 1876 and proved vital to the economic growth of the City. Company officials, led by the President John L. Lancaster, had this Passenger Terminal Building constructed in 1931. Designed by Wyatt C. Hedrick (1888-1964), it is a good example of the Art Deco style. Rail traffic began to decline during the 1950s and the last T&P passenger train to the city stopped here on March 22, 1967.


Texas Spring Palace

Located in Al Hayne Park, 100 Block of W. Lancaster, Fort Worth.

Following a suggestion by General R.A. Cameron, an officer of the Fort Worth & Denver Railway, city promoters developed the idea of an annual exhibition for the display of Texas agricultural products. In 1889 they constructed the Texas Spring Palace near this site to house the exhibits. Designed by the Fort Worth firm of Armstrong and Messer, it was a two-story wooden structure featuring influences of Oriental and Moorish styles. Women's groups added ornamentation using flowers, seeds, and grasses. On the evening of May 30, 1890, during the second season of the exhibition, a fire swept through the Spring Palace, completely destroying the structure. A number of people who crowded the building at the time had to leap from the second floor to escape the flames. Alfred S. Hayne (b. 1849), a native of England, returned to the burning Palace to help others who were still trapped inside. The only fatality of the fire, he died the next day of burns suffered in the rescue effort. In 1893 the Women's Humane Association dedicated a monument near this site in memory of his heroism and courage. Efforts to rebuild the Texas Spring Palace failed because of economic problems in the Panic of 1893.


Thannisch Block Building

Located at 109 E. Exchange Avenue, Fort Worth.

The eastern portion of this structure was built in 1906-07 by Col. Thomas Marion Thannisch (1853-1935), one of north Fort Worth's early developers. Designed for use as a hotel and office space to serve the Stockyards community and trade, the building was expanded in 1913. The three-story commercial structure features decorative brickwork, chevron designs in the upper story, and a corbeled parapet.


TSTA Building

Located at 410 E. Weatherford, Fort Worth.

Completed in 1930, this building was constructed to serve as the headquarters of the Texas State Teachers Association. Noted Fort Worth architect Wiley G. Clarkson design the structure, which features Renaissance Revival styling. In 1949 the decision was made to move the TSTA offices to Austin, and the building was later purchased by the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association which remained here for thirty years. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark- 1981.


Winfield Garage

Located at 206 E. 8th St., Fort Worth.

By 1919 Fort Worth had become a booming commercial center because of the oil and cattle markets. To accommodate this growth, the Winfield Garage was opened in April 1920 and operated a livery service with 25 touring cars and limousines. Designed by the architectural firm of Sanguinet & Staats to park 325 vehicles, it was called the largest and most modern in the state. The garage hosted the city's first annual auto show, which attracted about 50,000 visitors. Later the facility housed other businesses related to the auto industry.


Cable Tool Rig

Located inside Six Flags Over Texas, 2201 Six Flags Rd., Arlington.

Drilled the early deep oil wells in Texas. Derrick here is exact replica and has same rigging and tools used in 1920 to drill the Crowley No. 1, a 250-barrel producer at 3500 feet--one of deepest wells up to the time. It was near Breckenridge, in one of great fields in oil empire of Texas. (1966)


Fort Worth Stock Yards Exchange

Located at 100 block of E. Exchange St., Fort Worth.

Spanning Exchange Avenue, this gateway to the Fort Worth Stock Yard was completed in 1910. Constructed by the Topeka Bridge & Land Co. for the Fort Worth Stock Yards Co., it was a significant feat of concrete work for that era. The columns are 22 feet high and 13 feet in circumference. The sign is 36 feet long and 4 feet high. The entrance is a significant landmark in this historic area of Fort Worth. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark-1985.


Paddock Viaduct

Located in Heritage Park on the footpath under the south side of the Main St. Bridge, Fort Worth.

Low-water crossing and ferries originally provided the only access across the Trinity River at this location, connecting the downtown area of Fort Worth with northern sections of the city. A two-lane suspension bridge, constructed near this site in the 1890s, proved inadequate for the growing population. This span, designed by the St. Louis firm of Brenneke and Fay, was built in 1914. It was the first reinforced concrete arch in the nation to use self-supporting, reinforcing steel. The bridge is named in honor of B.B. Paddock, former State Legislator and Mayor of the City.


Armour and Company

Located at 500 block E. Exchange Ave., Fort Worth.

In 1901, local business leaders G. W. Simpson and L. V. Niles began negotiating with Armour & Co. one of the nation' four largest meatpacking firms, to encourage establishment of a branch plant in Fort Worth. The Fort Worth Stock Yards Co. offered land and other incentives and by 1902, construction of a plant just north of this site was underway. The new operation was instrumental in the city's development as the livestock center of the Southwest, creating a number of support businesses. It remained in operation for over 50 years, closing in 1962. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836-1986


The Edna Gladney Home

Located at 2110 Hemphill, Fort Worth.

The Rev. Issac Z.T. Morris and his wife began in 1887 to care for orphans and abandoned children in Fort Worth, keeping them in their family home. Their work led to chartering (1904) of the Texas Children's Home & Aid Society, with J.B. Baker, J.N. Brown, William Bryce, E.R. Conner, J.C. Conner, J.V. Dealey, Irby Dunklin, H.B.Francis, H.H. Halsell, J. Lee Johnson, E.H. McCuistion, Mr. Morris, G. H. Mulkey, J.W. Robbins, L. A. Suggs, and R.M. Wynne as directors. The Society engaged primarily in placing children in well-chosen adoptive homes. Mrs Edna Gladney (1889-1961) became a director in 1910. A crusader in behalf of waifs, foundlings and unwed mothers, she joined the staff as superintendent in 1927. By her efforts, permanent housing was acquired and services enlarged. Her influence extended beyond her own office, into securing legislation and social reform. Her work received wide public notice; it was dramatized (1941) in the motion picture "Blossoms in the Dust". The home was renamed (1950) in her honor. Progress continued. A hospital unit was added (1954) and named for veteran Board Chairman A. J. Duncan. In 1962, the Gladney home was accredited by the Child Welfare League of America, Inc. Auxiliaries have been formed and facilities added to promote the work. (1974)


Fort Worth Stock Yards Company

Located at 131 E. Exchange St., Fort Worth.

The Fort Worth Stock Yards Company was created in 1893, when Boston capitalist Greenlief W. Simpson led a group of investors in purchasing the Fort Worth Union Stock Yards. Under Simpson's leadership, the Company earned the support of the Texas Cattle Raisers Association and lured the prominent meatpacking companies of Armour and Swift to open plants here. Publicity through the Company's market newspaper and annual Fat Stock Show, both begun in 1896, resulted in a significant increase in the number of animals brought to market. The Stock Yards Co. built the area's livestock-related facilities and had controlling interest in many North Fort Worth businesses and properties. The first five decades of the 20th Century were the most successful for the Fort Worth Stock Yards Co. During World War I, foreign governments purchased draft animals, making Fort Worth the largest horse and mule market in the world. In 1917, overall livestock market receipts reached 3,500,000 and in 1944, sales exceeded 5,000,000 head of livestock. However, by the 1950s, local auctions were drawing sellers away from this central market. Today the Fort Worth Stock Yards Co. continues as a significant part of the city's unique heritage. Texas Sesquicentennial 1836-1986.


Fort Worth Stockyards Hog and Sheep Markets

Located at 140 E. Exchange St., Fort Worth.

Early attempts by the Fort Worth Union Stock Yards Corporation, established in 1887, to persuade Texans to produce more hogs proved unsuccessful. In 1903 the Fort Worth Stockyards constructed new hog and sheep pens and launched a promotional campaign, which included cash and livestock prizes and a youth Pig Club program, to persuade ranchers to raise more hogs. The number of hogs processed at the stockyards increased from 150,527 in 1903 to 1,062,021 in 1917. The number of sheep processed at the stockyards ranged from about 100,000 to 400,00 per year from 1903 through the 1920s . By 1936 Texas had become the largest producing state for both cattle and sheep. For one week in the spring of 1937 Fort Worth received more sheep than any other principal U.S. market. During World War II cattle, sheep, and hog numbers at the Fort Worth Stockyards increased dramatically. Hog totals topped 1 million in both 1943 and 1944 and from 1943 through 1946 more than 2 million sheep were processed annually at Fort Worth's Stockyards. The Sheep and Hog Markets were a significant factor in Fort Worth's development into one of the nation's largest livestock centers during the 1940s and 1950s. Sesquicentennial of Texas Statehood 1845-1995.

This page was last modified 27 Sep 2001.

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