Fort Worth - Encyclopedia

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FORT WORTH, a city and the county-seat of Tarrant county, Texas, U.S.A., about 3 o m. W. of Dallas, on the S. bank of the West Fork of the Trinity river. Pop. (1880) 6663; (1890) 23,076; (1900) 26,688, of whom 1793 were foreign-born and 4 2 49 were negroes; (1910, census) 73,312. It is served by the Chicago, Rock Island & Gulf, the Fort Worth & Denver City, the Fort Worth & Rio Grande, and the St Louis, San Francisco & Texas of the "Frisco" system, the Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe, the Houston & Texas Central, the International & Great Northern, the Missouri, Kansas & Texas, the St Louis SouthWestern, the Texas & Pacific, and the Trinity & Brazos Valley (Colorado & Southern) railways. Fort Worth is beautifully situated on a level space above the river. It is the seat of Fort Worth University (coeducational), a Methodist Episcopal institution, which was established as the Texas Wesleyan College in 1881, received its present name in 1889, comprises an academy, a college of liberal arts and sciences, a conservatory of music, a law school, a medical school, a school of commerce, and a department of oratory and elocution, and in 1907 had 802 students; the Polytechnic College (coeducational; Methodist Episcopal, South), which was established in 1890, has preparatory, collegiate, normal, commercial, and fine arts departments and a summer school, and in 1906 had 12 instructors and (altogether) 696 students; the Texas masonic manual training school; a kindergarten training school; St Andrews school (Protestant Episcopal), and St Ignatius Academy (Roman Catholic). There are several good business, municipal and county buildings, and a Carnegie library. On the 3rd of April 1909 a fire destroyed ten blocks in the centre of the city. Fort Worth lies in the midst of a stock-raising and fertile agricultural region; there is an important stockyard and packing establishment just outside the city; and considerable quantities of cotton are raised in the vicinity. Among the products are packed meats, flour, beer, trunks, crackers, candy, paint, ice, paste, cigars, clothing, shoes, mattresses, woven wire beds, furniture and overalls; and there are foundries, iron rolling mills and tanneries. In 1905 the total value of the city's factory product was $5,668,391, an increase of 62.5% since 190o; Fort Worth in 1900 ranked fifth among the cities of the state in the value of its factory product; in 1905 it ranked fourth. Fort Worth's numerous railways have given it great importance as a commercial centre. The municipality owns and operates the waterworks and the electric-lighting plant.

A military post was established here in 1849, being called first Camp Worth and then Fort Worth. It was abandoned in 1853. A settlement grew up about the fort, and the city was incorporated in 1873. The fort and the settlement were named in honour of General William Jenkins Worth (1794-1849), a native of Hudson, New York, who served in the War of 1812, commanded the United States forces against the Seminole Indians in 1841-1842, served under both General Taylor and General Scott in the Mexican War, distinguishing himself at Monterey (where he earned the brevet of major-general) and in other engagements, and later commanded the department of Texas. In 1907 Fort Worth adopted a commission form of government.

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