Plus, Fireside Pies is coming back to West 7th.
March 17, 2023 6AM-Top banner logo-small.png


6AM City In-house
Today's Note
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🚂 All aboard
The arrival of the railroad sparked a boom in population and business in Fort Worth. | Photo courtesy of UTA Libraries
Welcome back to our five-minute Fort Worth history series, where we talk about different eras in our city’s history for five minutes (clever name, we know).

Catch up quick with a quick breakdown of the city’s establishment and some of the rough-and-tumble years of cattle drives and Hell’s Half Acre.

This month, we’re chugging right along with the story of when the railroad came to town.

Close but no cigar

In the early 1870s, construction of the Texas and Pacific Railway (T&P) was rocketing across the state from east to west, reaching 130 miles from Longview to just west of Dallas.

The Panic of 1873 hit and Jay Cook & Co., the Philadelphia-based investment firm financing the railroad, went under. It took another three years to build 30 miles of tracks to Fort Worth.

The stalled railroad project swept the feet out from under the burgeoning Fort Worth and left the streets empty — prompting the sleeping panther joke that gave our city its nickname.


In 1873, B.B. Paddock drew an ambitious map of rail lines emanating from Fort Worth, three years before the railroad reached town.


Image courtesy of UTA Libraries

A group effort

Cowtown residents, including John Peter Smith, banded together to form the Tarrant County Construction Company and pooled money, labor, and supplies to restart the railroad construction in 1875.

Confederate veteran Major K. M. Van Zandt led the charge, using 320 acres of (then southside) land donated by himself, Ephraim Daggett, Thomas Jefferson Jennings, and other local landowners.

The crews worked day and night to construct the railroad before the state’s land grant ended in 1876 — and they succeeded, completing the last two miles between Sycamore Creek and downtown in five days.

The first trained rolled into town on July 19 at 11:23 a.m., blowing the whistle on a new era for Fort Worth.


Passing trains are a common sight and sound in Fort Worth.


Photo by @lone_star_railfan

Still chugging along

The railroad is still an important part of our town today as Fort Worth is home to the headquarters for BNSF Railway, one of the largest freight railroads in North America. Just take a peak over the Hulen Street overpass to see the lines in action.

Let us know what era of Cowtown history you want to read next.
What are your Fort Worth-inspired
baby names?

Spring has sprung and new life is popping up all over town from new family additions to baby zoo animals.

If you had to name something — person, pet, or plant — that was inspired by Cowtown history, culture, or trends, what would you chose?
Friday, March 17
  • After Hours in the Garden | Friday, Mar. 17 | 6:30-8:30 p.m. | Fort Worth Botanic Garden, 3220 Botanic Garden Blvd., Fort Worth | $18-$25 | Stop and smell the roses after a long day of work and enjoy delicious food and drinks while listening to live music by Joseph Neville.
  • Scream Break | Friday, Mar. 17-Saturday, Mar. 18 | 9 p.m. | Six Flags Over Texas, 2201 E. Road to Six Flags St., Arlington | $40 | Extend your day of fun with haunted houses, a scare zone, and nighttime rides on six major thrill rides.
Saturday, March 18
  • Music and Movement | Saturday, Mar. 18 | 10-11:15 a.m. | Fort Worth Public Library - East Regional, 6301 Bridge St., Fort Worth | Free | Littles (ages 3-5) can sing songs and participate in activities that build language, motor, social and emotional skills.
  • 3rd Annual Cowtown Crawfish Boil | Saturday, Mar. 18 | 12-8 p.m. | Horus Hall, 208 Northwest 24th St., Fort Worth | $10-$40 | Crawfish, cold beer, and live music by the Squeezebox Bandits — what more could you want?
Sunday, March 19
  • Spring Breakaway | Sunday, Mar. 19 | 10 a.m.-8 p.m. | Fort Worth Stockyards, 131 E. Exchange Ave., Fort Worth | The festival features live music, comedy gunfight shows, cattle drives, family activities, and more.
  • 15th Annual Spring Fling | Sunday, Mar. 19 | 11 a.m.-4 p.m. | Will Rodgers Memorial Center, Cattle Bldg. 1, 3401 Burnett-Tandy Dr., Fort Worth | Free | Funky Finds is putting on its annual family- and pet-friendly market with handmade, repurposed, upcycled, and vintage goods.
We have a calendar filled with events and activities you can plan for in advance. Click the button below to bookmark ideas for upcoming date nights, family outings, and time with friends.

Click here to have your event featured.
News Notes

  • 56º | Partly cloudy | 0% chance of rain
Today Is
  • St. Patrick’s Day. Observed to honor the death of St. Patrick, the annual holiday is celebrated globally and often features Irish dishes, parades, and dancing. Join in locally with one of these lucky Irish-themed celebrations.
  • Fireside Pies is returning to Funkytown. On Wednesday, March 22, the artisanal pizzeria will open a new restaurant in the Left Bank Shopping Center, just down the street from the former Crockett Row location that closed last month. Stop by 628 Harrold St. for a wood-fired slice. (CultureMap Fort Worth)
  • Don’t let this weekend’s weather keep you from playing golf. Trade the fairway for Arlington’s Esports Stadium (1200 Ballpark Way) and peruse 90 vendors, interactive games, club fittings, and clinics at the DFW Golf Show. Get tickets for the three-day expo starting today at 1 p.m.
Real Estate
  • Ready for a bit more space? How does 11,800 sqft sound? Former RadioShack CEO Len Roberts is auctioning his five-bedroom mansion near TCU. Bids on the French-style, limestone estate at 4400 Overton Crest St. will start at $2.5 million on Monday, April 24.
  • Two Tarrant County natives were nominated for the CMT Awards on Sunday, April 2. Arlington’s Maren Morris is up for female video of the year for “Humble Quest” and Mansfield’s Drake Milligan is nominated for breakthrough male video of the year with “Sounds Like Something I’d Do.”
  • HSC Physical Health — a free cancer therapy program spearheaded by UNT Health Science Center — opened its expanded facility at 6913 Camp Bowie Blvd. FitSteps For Life will provide specialized cancer exercise treatments to those with or have had cancer. To enroll, patients must have a referral from a primary care physician or oncologist.
  • This spring, driverless trucks will deliver frozen food to three Kroger stores in the metroplex. This week, the grocery chain announced a partnership with Gatik, an autonomous delivery company with a hub in Alliance. The 20-ft trucks will deliver food from Kroger’s headquarters in Dallas to local stores daily. (Fort Worth Report)
  • Ready to say goodbye to loud upstairs neighbors, street parking, and not having an electric vehicle charger? Then you’ll want to check out Fort Worth’s newest luxury development, Wayfare - Cibolo Hills, where every single-story apartment includes an attached one- or two-car garage, plus a 220-volt EV charger. Vroom vroom.*

  • $241. That’s the real price of a roundtrip ticket from Boston to Barcelona sold this year via Going — a travel membership that alerts you when flight prices drop. Sign up for a free membership or try an Elite membership for free if you’re interested in business and first class tickets, too.
Give it a hurl
The ball is called a sliotar, pronounced “slit-er.” | Video courtesy of Giphy
There are many ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, but have you heard about hurling? No, not that kind of hurling. We’re talking about the Irish sport.

What is hurling?

This ancient Gaelic game is the national sport of Ireland and looks a bit like field hockey played with a baseball.

Players use a wooden stick to pass and score points by shooting through the opponent’s goalpost. Players use the stick (called a hurl or hurley) to hit and balance the ball (called a sliotar).

Want to learn all the official rules? Check out the US Gaelic Athletic Association (USGAA).

Get involved

Unfortunately, it looks like we don’t have an official USGAA hurling clubyet. That means the sliotar is in our court (so to speak) and the best way to get your hands on a hurley is by starting your own club. Scope out the future competition, as well as other Gaelic sports, with the USGAA’s interactive map.
The Wrap
Kate Mazade Today’s Edition By:
From the Editor
In case you didn’t know, today is medical residency Match Day. Graduating medical students from all across the country will find out what’s in store for the next several years.

To our friends and readers at UNT Health Science Center and TCU Burnett School of Medicine, congratulations on all your hard work and we can’t wait to see what’s next for you.
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