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Fairmount Neighborhood Association – Southside Historic District Records

History

The Fairmount Neighborhood Association is a non-profit organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the quality of life for the residents of the area. The Fairmount Neighborhood Association promotes neighborhood unity and improvement, works to improve the general welfare of residents, and serves as an advocate on behalf of neighborhood interests.

Covering .6 square mile, the Fairmount/Southside Historic District in Fort Worth contains one of the nation’s richest collections of turn-of-the-century housing (1900s). The historic district was platted between 1883 and 1907, and it is comprised of approximately 20 subdivisions. Magnolia Avenue, Eight Avenue, Jessamine Street, and Hemphill Street serve as the neighborhood’s boundaries. The Fairmount area was a fashionable neighborhood in the 1920s. Business executives and professionals such as doctors, lawyers, and educators lived in roughly one third of the houses.

As Fort Worth’s suburbs grew after World War II, the neighborhood fell into disrepair. In the mid-1970s, a number of residents began an effort to stabilize the neighborhood from the encroachment of the medical district and the location of undesirable businesses. A group of residents successfully banded together to oppose the opening of a topless bar on Eight Avenue and from there the Fairmount Neighborhood Association was formed.

Since then, it has been instrumental in securing National Historic District status for Fairmount in 1990, establishing a park and green space areas, as well as working to establish an accepted boundary line between the neighborhood and the medical district. As a recognized historic district, the area has protected the visual character of the residential and commercial properties within the designated area. The designation provides for financial incentives including tax credits and allows the area to apply for grant funding.

In addition to the renewal of the Fairmount residential area, commercial properties also have benefited from the revival. Magnolia Avenue has become restaurant row in Fort Worth, and the businesses have attracted many community and out-of town residents.

Provenance

The Fairmount Neighborhood Association first donated their records in March of 2008. Since then the Association has made additional donations to the library in 2011 and 2012.

Scope and Contents Note

The Fairmount Neighborhood Association – Southside Historic District Records consists of organizational records, newsletters, correspondence, clippings, photographs, scrapbooks, posters, maps, architectural drawings and renderings, subject files, awards, reports, video cassette tapes, and electronic records that document the Fairmount Neighborhood Association and the Fairmount Neighborhood. The materials date from 1955-2012 and measure 9.6 linear feet (23 boxes). The collection is arranged into 8 series.

  • Series I - Organizational Records (1978-2012): Contains the records of the Fairmount Neighborhood Association. Included are the Articles of Incorporation from 1978, By Laws from 1989-2009, and meeting agendas for both the board and the general membership from 1988-2012. Notes and pamphlets about the history of Fairmount are in this series as well.
  • Series II - Publications (1984-2011): Consists of issues of the Fairmount Newsletter.
  • Series III - Historic Preservation and Neighborhood Planning (1980-2011): This is the largest series in the collection. Design guidelines created by the association, files on residential properties and commercial projects, and Historic and Cultural Landmark Commission cases are in this series. Beyond the historic preservation materials, the association also maintained files on planning and zoning changes in the neighborhood and surrounding areas.
  • Series IV - Home Tours (1983-2012): Documents 30 years of home tours. The series contains articles about the tour and the featured homes, programs, flyers, tickets, photographs, and planning and financial documents.
  • Series V - Clippings and Subject Files (1955-2011): Clippings from the 1980s-2010s with stories about the neighborhood, the houses, historic preservation, and other topics of interest to the association. The subject files reflect particular areas of interest to association like other neighborhood associations as well as issues that would affect the neighborhood like potential gas drilling in the area.
  • Series VI - Audiovisual Materials and Electronic Records (2000-2004): Consists of videocassette tapes, 3.5 inch disks, and CDs. The majority of the information on these different formats pertains to the Home Tours.
  • Series VII - Scrapbooks (1983-2005): Contains scrapbooks with photographs and clippings about neighborhood, the Home Tours, the residents, and the association.
  • Series VIII - Oversized Materials (1987-2011): Consists of awards, posters, architectural plans, a neighborhood yard sign, and articles about Fairmount.

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Last updated: June 26, 2014