Images of America: Fort Worth
Table of Contents:
Title Page Copyright Page Dedication Acknowledgments List of Donors to the Tarrant County Archives
Introduction: Genesis of Fort Worth
1. From Fort to Fire: 1849–1876 2. 2. From Fire to Fire: 1876–1909 3. 3. From Fire to Flood: 1909–1949 4. From Flood to Fury: 1949–2000 Bibliography
Text sample from Chapter 1:
Early that year, the value of a corner lot might literally double overnight. Then, in the fall of 1873, came news that the railway might not make it after all; the English investor Jay Cooke & Co. had failed. Values declined as rapidly as they had grown, and many houses under construction were left half-finished. The rail reached as far as Eagle Ford, just west of Dallas, and there it was abandoned. Paddock bemoaned the timing: “Had the panic broken thirty days later so that it would have been practicable to have completed the road to Fort Worth before suspending operations, Dallas would have been a good county seat town instead of a thriving city and Fort Worth would today have been a city of a quarter million population.” Paddock said “the grass literally grew in the streets. This was not a metaphor to indicate stagnation, but a doleful fact.” Most of the citizenry of Fort Worth moved to Dallas. One of these, attorney Robert A. Cowart, told the famous tale—in the Dallas Herald article from whence the nickname “Panther City” is derived—of a panther asleep in the streets of Fort Worth. For those who remained in Fort Worth, civic pride only grew, and the city was chartered March 1, 1873.