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Discovering Fort Worth: 10 Facts That Make It Unique

Nearly a million people call Fort Worth, Texas home, and tourists from around the world pass through the area throughout the year. As part of the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area, the “City of Cowboys and Culture” became the US’s second-largest city in terms of population. Fort Worth was founded in 1873 with a population of 500 in north Texas.

If you are considering moving to or visiting this city in the future, you are in for a truly unique experience. Here are 10 facts about Fort Worth that should entice you to check out the city in your lifetime. 

1. It Was the Last Place John F. Kennedy Gave a Public Speech Before His Assassination

The country was rocked by the assassination of John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963. It led to a major shift in the political landscape and became a turning point in the history of the United States. An excellent way to appreciate the legacy of the 35th president is to visit the site of his final speech before he died in nearby Dallas.

John F. Kennedy spent his last night at the Hilton Fort Worth and gave two speeches in the city: one planned in the Chamber of Commerce and one unscheduled to the masses gathered outside.

jfk in fort worth last speech

2. Named After Major General William Jenkins Worth

William Jenkins Worth was an officer in the US Army during the War of 1812, the Second Seminole War, and the Mexican-American War. His military career was long and successful. He quickly advanced up the ranks and achieved multiple victories, one of which earned him the Sword of Honor during the Mexican-American War.

His legacy can be seen throughout the country, with streets, lakes, towns, and the city of Fort Worth all named in his honor. Fort Worth, TX was named after him when it was established in 1849 because it was the frontier post that he was stationed in. 

3. Home to the World’s Largest Honky-Tonk

largest honky tonk fort worth

One of the most interesting facts about Fort Worth is that you can participate in the world’s largest Honky-Tonk at the historic Fort Worth Stockyards. The Stockyards is a massive, 100,000-square-foot venue where you can dance and listen to country music for an incredible night out.

Stay the night at the historic Stockyards Hotel and visit the Stockyards Museum during the day. Then, in downtown Fort Worth, finish it all off with a night of live music performances and dancing in the huge dance hall.

4. Biggest Private Civil War Collection

The Texas Civil War Museum in Fort Worth has the largest collection of artifacts west of the Mississippi River. American history fanatics will marvel at Ray Richey’s private collection, considered one of the largest in the world.

The museum displays items from every aspect of American life during the bloody war, from Victorian dresses in Judy Richey’s Victorian Dress Collection to household objects to military weaponry. 

5. Internationally Renowned Kimbell Art Museum

The Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas, features collections focusing on European and Asian art styles. Over 350 works, including works by Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Monet, Picasso, and Matisse, can be admired. There are also plenty of events throughout the year, such as educational workshops and even happy hours. 

Paintings, sculptures, and interactive exhibits will thrill any art aficionado. However, the museum building is also considered an architectural masterpiece. It was built by Louis Kahn, who also designed the FDR Four Freedoms Park. Renzo Piano, famous for the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, designed the museum’s other building.

kimbell art museum

6. Oldest Zoo in Texas

Fort Worth is home to the oldest continuously operated zoo site in Texas, the Fort Worth Zoo. Started in 1909, this zoo is now the second-most visited in the country, behind the San Diego Zoo. It is also one of the best regarding animal care standards.

The Fort Worth Zoo houses over 7,000 native and exotic animals, and it is consistently named one of the best zoos in the country. If you love to observe animals, visiting this historic spot will be a time well spent.

7. About 60% of US Paper Money Is Printed in Fort Worth

paper money being printed

The Bureau of Engraving and Printing is responsible for every dollar bill and coin that is created as part of the US currency system. However, one of the lesser-known facts about Fort Worth is that it’s home to one of two Bureau headquarters — the other is in Washington D.C.

You can tour Fort Worth’s Western Currency Facility, where about 60% of all the paper money in the United States is printed, over $29.4 million in currency notes daily. 

8. World’s Only Twice-Daily Cattle Drive

A cattle drive is when a herd of cattle is moved from one place to another, usually guided by cowboys on horseback. The cattle and ranching industry has been a staple of life in Texas for centuries.

There is only one place in the world where there are two cattle drives each day — the Fort Worth Stockyards. You can observe the longhorn cattle before or after the herding or watch as they are guided by real cowboys riding on horses. Fort Worth became what it is today largely because of the influence of the cattle industry, earning the nickname Cowtown.

9. Bonnie and Clyde Used Stockyards Hotel as a Hideout Spot

As mentioned before, the Stockyards Hotel is a historic spot in a popular district of Fort Worth, Texas. But did you know that Bonnie and Clyde famously used this hotel as a hiding spot throughout their criminal careers?

You can even stay in suite 305, which the couple chose because of its views of the two main streets in Fort Worth’s downtown area. The hotel is located close to the West Fork Trinity River. Bonnie and Clyde’s hideouts are found throughout the country, but this hotel is one of the most famous.

bonnie and clyde room

10. Second-Longest Burning Lightbulb in the World

Every state has its quirks and strange historical pieces. Fort Worth is home to the Palace Light Bulb, which has been burning since it was turned on in 1908. The bulb has been through a lot, including a near miss when the opera house it resided in was scheduled for demolition. Fortunately, it was saved by George Dato and has continued to burn ever since. 

Some other attractions that are worth seeing are the Museum of Fort Worth, the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame, the Texas Motor Speedway, the Cowgirl Museum, and a local rodeo show. With so many historical and cultural destinations and the stunning bank of the Trinity River, visitors easily fall in love with the city.

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Zach Shelley

Zach Shelley is a seasoned real estate investor with a diverse network spanning across the nation. As the founder of his own real estate venture, Zach is committed to offering innovative solutions to homeowners facing various real estate challenges.. Through his dedication and strategic approach, Zach continues to make a significant impact in the real estate industry, providing homeowners with alternative pathways to navigate their property transactions.

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