Betty B. Ambrose

FLATIRON BUILDING. The Flatiron Building in Fort Worth, designed by Sanguinet and Staats in 1907, was one of the earliest skyscrapers in the Southwest, and at the time of its construction was one of the tallest buildings in North Texas. The 2,755 square-foot seven-story reinforced concrete and steel structure, the first of its kind in Fort Worth, was erected as a professional office building for Bacon Saunders, pioneer of medicine in Texas and dean of Fort Worth Medical College. It is situated at the corner of Ninth and Houston streets. The wedge-shaped site dictated the building's unusual triangular plan, similar to the famed Flatiron Building designed by Daniel Burnham in New York in 1902, from which it derived its name. The building's composition, a two-story base and a five-story body capped by a large cornice with sixteen terra-cotta lions' heads, echoed Chicago architect Louis Sullivan's practice of dividing high-rise structures into a base, shaft, and crown. The ornamentation, which is vaguely Sullivanesque, also suggests links with the contemporary Chicago School. The building became a state historical landmark in 1969 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971; it is the only flatiron building in Texas and one of five on the National Register.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram, February 11, 1971. Sanguinet and Staats-Hedrick Collection, Architecture and Planning Library, University of Texas at Austin. Ruby Schmidt, ed., Fort Worth and Tarrant County (Fort Worth: Texas Christian University Press, 1984). Tarrant County Historic Resources Survey: Principal Findings and Resource Characteristics (Fort Worth: Historic Preservation Council for Tarrant County, 1982).

Image Use Disclaimer

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, Betty B. Ambrose, "FLATIRON BUILDING," accessed October 23, 2018, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/ccf04.

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Get this week's most popular Handbook of Texas articles delivered straight to your inbox