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Fort Worth Flashback: Belle Burchill tried to tame Hell’s Half Acre

Posted March 25, 2013

In honor of _ _Women’s History Month_, each week in March Fort Worth Flashback will take a look at the role of women in our city’s history._

Belle Burchill

Belle Burchill

Belle Burchill (1847-1937) served as postmistress in the 1880s and is credited with starting home mail delivery in Fort Worth.

According to the book North of the River: A Brief History of North Fort Worth, during Fort Worth’s rowdy saloon days, Burchill and another woman, Delia Collins, frequently assisted a Methodist minister on “errands of mercy” in Hell’s Half Acre and the north side red-light district.

“A truly enlightened woman, Mrs. Burchill talked the Tarrant County commissioners into buying a house of ill repute to use as an orphanage for the children of the ‘fallen women’ they had been assisting,” the book says.

That orphanage would later be known as the Fort Worth Benevolent Home.

Her daughter, Edna M. Burchill, developed the Burchill Addition in east Fort Worth.

The Fort Worth Library has approximately 10,000 items pertaining to the history of Fort Worth and Tarrant County. These items include city and county government documents, newspapers, directories, cemetery association records, maps as well as popular and scholarly books written by local authors or about local subjects. To learn more, call 817-392-7740 or email the Genealogy, History and Archives Section.

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Calendar

Park Vista & Keller Haslet Intersection Improvements Project Meeting: 6:30 p.m. Sept. 18, 2019; Villages of Woodland Springs Amenity Cener, 12209 Timberland Blvd.

Breakfast at the BAC featuring Dr. Stacia Alexander: 7:30 a.m. Sept. 19, 2019; Fort Worth Business Assistance Center, 1150 South Freeway.
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Tarrant County Adult Education & Literacy Consortium Meeting: 9:30 a.m. Sept. 19, 2019; Workforce Development Board Offices, Large Conference Room, 1320 South University Drive, Suite 600.
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Urban Design Commission Public Hearing: 10 a.m. Sept. 19, 2019; City Council Work Room, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Urban Design Commission Work Session: 10 a.m. Sept. 19, 2019; City Council Work Room, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Community Action Partners (CAP) Council: 1:30 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; Fort Worth City Credit Union, First Floor Board Room, 2309 Montgomery Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76107.
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Fort Worth Housing Solutions Board of Commissioners Regular Meeting: 5 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Fort Worth Housing Solutions FW Alliance Public Facility Corporation Meeting: 5 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; FWSH Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Northwest Community Center Project Meeting: 6 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; Saginaw High School, 800 North Blue Mound Road.

Fort Worth Housing Solutions Board of Commissioners Public Hearing: 6 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Fort Worth Housing Solutions Public Hearing: 6 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; Fort Worth Housing Solutions Administrative Office, 1201 East 13th Street.
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Eastside & Southside Infrastructure Improvements Project Meeting: 6:30 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; Sycamore Community Center, 2525 East Rosedale St.

WORKSHOP: Lead-Safe Program (Presented in Spanish): 6:30 p.m. Sept. 19, 2019; Northside Community Center, 1100 NW 18 St.

Barbershop Talk : 11 a.m. Sept. 20, 2019; Millennium Cuts, 8000 Wichita St No. 112.

Minority and Women Business Enterprise Advisory Committee Meeting: 11:30 a.m. Sept. 20, 2019; James E. Guinn Building, 1st Floor, PharmaFab Conference Room #116, 1150 South Freeway.
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Tax Planning for Small Business: 9 a.m. Sept. 21, 2019; Fort Worth Business Assistance Center, 1150 South Freeway.
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Presentations and Pitches Bootcamp: 9 a.m. Sept. 21, 2019; Fort Worth Business Assistance Center, 1150 South Freeway.
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Fort Worth Crud Cruiser Event: 9 a.m. Sept. 21, 2019; MET Church, 11301 Old Denton Road, Fort Worth 76244.

WORKSHOP:Lead-Safe Program (Presented in English): 9:30 a.m. Sept. 21, 2019; Northside Community Center, 1100 NW 18th St.

Mental Health Awareness Fair at Como Community Center: 10 a.m. Sept. 21, 2019; Como Community Center, 4900 Horne St.

Compost 101: 1 p.m. Sept. 21, 2019; Botanic Garden, 3408 West Freeway.
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Buttermilk Junction Old Time String Band: 1 p.m. Sept. 21, 2019; Log Cabin Village, 2100 Log Cabin Village Lane.

Field Trip to the Star in Frisco - Worth Heights Community Center: 2 p.m. Sept. 21, 2019; Worth Heights Community Center, 3551 New York Ave.

Building Standards Commission Pre-Meeting: 9 a.m. Sept. 23, 2019; City Council Confernce Room 290, 2nd Floor City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Building Standards Commission Meeting: 9:30 a.m. Sept. 23, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
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Fall Hats for Seniors at Como Community Center: 10 a.m. Sept. 23, 2019; Como Community Center, 4900 Horne St.

Trinity Metro Board of Directors Meeting: 3:30 p.m. Sept. 23, 2019; Fort Worth Central Station, Downtown Fort Worth, 2nd Floor Community Room, 1001 Jones Street.
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National Voter Registration Day: Sept. 24, 2019; Fort Worth Public Libraries.

Employee Life-Cycle - Interviewing, Hiring and What Comes Next: 11:30 a.m. Sept. 24, 2019; Fort Worth Business Assistance Center, 1150 South Freeway.
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Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs Committee: 2 p.m. Sept. 24, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. Sept. 24, 2019; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

View the full city calendar and current meetings.