A few weeks ago we hosted an agent meeting with guest speaker, Brent Hull. Brent is a Master Builder and the owner/founder of Hull Millwork, Hull Homes, and Hull Restoration (www.hullworks.com). He and his team are dedicated to the craft of architectural millwork, residential construction, and historic restoration. Because of his passion and expertise on the subject, we invited Brent to come teach us about the history and development of some of the beautiful historic neighborhoods here in Fort Worth. We’ve summarized a few key points that we’d like to share with you!
Though Texas became a state in 1845, North and West Texas did not begin development until 1876. The railroad and cattle sales created westward expansion and drew settlers to Fort Worth. Our earliest buildings reflect the Victorian era. These homes and structures are most commonly found near the city center on Summit Ave and Pennsylvania (known as Quality Hill), with a few others in Arlington Heights and Fairmount. Thistle Hill, Fairview House, and The Women’s Club are several of the well-known Victorian homes still standing.
Our city saw a lot of growth and expansion in the late 1800s-early 1900s. More settlers were drawn to this area due to the discovery of oil and the defense industry. The style of homes built in this time frame were Arts and Crafts, or Bungalows. Bungalows were known as the “simple, working man homes” for obvious reasons. These charming houses are common in Arlington Heights, Oakhurst, Fairmount, Berkley, Mistletoe, and North Ft Worth. In fact, Fairmount is the largest Bungalow neighborhood in the US! The Period Revival homes followed closely behind. These higher end homes are scattered around in these same neighborhoods as well as Park Hill, TCU, and Old Westover. Back then, neighborhoods were designed for walking to work, schools, and stores, which is why we see many buildings designed in the same styles as the homes they surround. It’s also why we see more recent developments returning to this model of family-friendly, walkable neighborhoods!
From 1926-1950, we saw a change in design and building style. The Art Deco movement occurred in the 20s-30s and was highly influenced by French and German design. However, building halted during the Great Depression and World War 1. Following the war, families needed affordable housing. This is where we see the ranch-style and mid-century modern homes emerge in pre-existing neighborhoods such as Park Hill, and further out from the city center in Ridglea, Tanglewood, etc. Charming in their own right, these homes were cheaper and quicker to build.
It’s truly fascinating how the homes around us reflect our own history. We are so appreciative of people like Brent who help us grow by sharing their wisdom with us! If you’re interested in Fort Worth’s architectural history and want to hear more, please enjoy our video above! As always, we are here for you and #ReadytoServe.