Since its original printing in 1952, the publication of the Handbook of Texas has been made possible through the support of its users. As an independent nonprofit, TSHA relies on your contributions to close the funding gap for the online Handbook and keep it a freely accessible resource for users worldwide. Please make a donation today to preserve the most comprehensive encyclopedic resource on Texas history. Donate Today »

FRUITDALE, TX

Lisa C. Maxwell

FRUITDALE, TEXAS. Fruitdale was three miles south of downtown Dallas in central Dallas County. The site is now bounded by Fordham Road on the north, the Missouri, Kansas, and Texas tracks to the east, Ledbetter Drive on the south, and Sunnyvale Street to the west. It was in the original land grants of J. K. Sloan and G. L. Haas. Although the first settlers in the area named it Christian Valley when they arrived in the 1850s, the real influx occurred after the Civil War. In 1886 the Missouri, Kansas, and Texas Railway was extended through Fruitdale. The settlement remained a quiet farming community into the twentieth century.

On April 17, 1937, Fruitdale incorporated to avoid annexation to Dallas. It had a population of 432 and was sometimes called Fruitdale Acres. The citizens imposed deed restrictions that allowed no businesses within the city limits. After World War II families moved to Fruitdale because of its large lots with space for gardens and yards for children to play in. Former farms were cut up into lots, and most houses were built on at least half an acre. Many families raised food for their own use in orchards or truck gardens. Every home had its own well and septic tank, but gas and electricity were available. The fire station had one full-time employee and twenty-five volunteer firemen, and the town had an elected city marshall for police protection, a stone community house, a church, and a five-acre city park.

By 1950 the population of Fruitdale was 876, but the community soon began to change. The shallow wells of the town went dry in droughts early in the decade, and the larger lots began to be broken into smaller pieces. Residents wanted more city services. Taxes rose. By the 1960s, with a population of 1,418, residents no longer saw a need to remain an "island city" surrounded by the city of Dallas. Large numbers of residents were moving in and out of the community, and there was a high turnover rate in city officials. In October of 1964 residents voted to disincorporate. Later that month Fruitdale was annexed by the city of Dallas.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 
Dallas Morning News, May 25, 1945. Dallas Times Herald, September 5, 1948, August 16, 1964.

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.

Citation

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

Handbook of Texas Online, Lisa C. Maxwell, "FRUITDALE, TX," accessed September 20, 2019, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hvf54.

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Texas AlmanacFor more information about towns and counties including physical features, statistics, weather, maps and much more, visit the Town Database on TexasAlmanac.com!
visit the mytsha forums to participate

View these posts and more when you register your free MyTSHA account.

Call for Papers: Texas Center for Working-Class Studies Events, Symposia, and Workshops
Hi all! You may be interested in this call for papers I received from the Texas Center for Working-Class Studies at Collin College...

Katy Jennings' Ride Scholarly Research Request
I'm doing research on Catherine Jennings Lockwood, specifically the incident known as "Katy Jennings' Ride." Her father was Gordon C. Jennings, the oldest man to die at the Alamo...

Texas Constitution of 1836 Co-Author- Elisha Pease? Ask a Historian
The TSHA profile of Elisha Marshall Pease states that he wrote part of the Texas Constitution although he was only a 24 year-old assistant secretary (not elected). I cannot find any other mention of this authorship work by Pease in other credible research about the credited Constution authors...