Fort Worth

Drawing of Fort Worth by William B. Potter

Fort Worth was made possible due to a series of Texas military actions in the Trinity Valley including the Sloan/Journey Expedition, followed by the establishment of Bird's Fort and the Village Creek Fight. We are fortunate to have pictures of the location of Bird's Fort which were provided by Gerald Harris. Gerald and a group of historically like-minded friends are promoting public access and recognition to the old fort's location.

It's always gratifying to find dedicated people involved with our pioneer history. Lea Ann and I were on a field trip to the re-enactment at Fort Richardson the fall of 2001 where we spotted Willard Thomas being assisted in adorning a sash which topped off his Dragoon General's uniform. Unfortunately, we are haivng trouble getting the pictures on the web at this time but just the same, meeting Willard was a fortunate occurrence. He gave us a tour of the Heritage Room in the courthouse as well as Heritage Park, just to the northwest which overlooks the Trinity where the traildrivers used to bed down their herds. We then visited the Pioneer Rest Cemetery and admired the new memorials installed honoring the unknown soldiers which are now known thanks to Willard's dedicated efforts. I also include Willard's short history of the fort in Fort Worth as well as Ms. Julia Kathryn Garrett's descriptions from her book, Fort Worth, A Frontier Triumph.

Ms. Garrett is remembered as the dean of Fort Worth history. She was largely responsible for the promotion of the Historical Society and for decades taught a demanding history class at Arlington Heights High School. Well-known author Mike Shropshire recalls that he and blues legend Delbert McClinton were sitting at the back of her classroom on the first day when she walked in, wrote her name on the blackboard and began to list what would be required of her students. Unfortunately, in good voice, Delbert attempted to whisper something to the effect of "She doesn't fool around". She continued to fill the blackboard until the bell rang and then turned around to face the students and said, "That's right, Delbert. I don't."

A few weeks later in what must have sounded like his future hit, "Givin' It Up", Delbert was summarily ordered out of class as he pleaded, "Aw, Ms. Garrett. I wasn't trying to look at her paper, honest. I was just trying to look down her dress.