Heritage Trails

Horseless Carriages
Coming Soon!

Automobiles appeared in Fort Worth around 1902. By 1904, vehicles had to be registered, display a painted license number, and be fitted with two lights and a horn or gong. Twelve miles per hour was the top speed allowed, with horns or gongs sounded 100 feet before each crossing. On August 24, 1903, a speed record of 1 hour and 35 minutes was set for the 30-mile trip between Fort Worth and Dallas, and the Star-Telegram reported “the automobile is no longer a toy or luxury.” By 1909, a motorcycle police officer was needed to catch speeders. Manufacturing plants and many dealerships opened during the “boom years” of the 1920s. Slow sales during the years of the Great Depression and World War II were followed by a post-war boom that required new roads and highways. The state’s first toll road opened in 1953 between Fort Worth and Dallas.