Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Race Horse

In the last two posts, I have written about the famous (and illegal) casino that existed on and under a hill between Dallas and Fort worth. I  also introduced you to a young lady that entertained there so many years ago. Well, let me tell you about a special racehorse that lived there. A rather large horse barn sits on the property,but this star required his own quarters,
which present day is the College's Alumni office.
Look closely, and you will see his name craved in stone still displayed between the door frame and the alumni sign.

That was a lot of money back in the 1930's....and is today!
Vicki Bryant(tour director and wife of the college president), was so happy that someone gifted her a picture of Royal Ford.

The plaque says that the horse was purchased (by Mr. Browning, founder of Top O' Hill Terrace)), from W.T. Waggoner,owner of nearby Arlington Downs Race Track.W.T. was a  wealthy cattle baron turned oilman. He was a very interesting gentleman who might just deserve a post all to himself. Seems every time Waggoner tried to drill a water well on his ranch, he only hit black oily stuff....What a shame. Oh, did I mention that Waggoner's ranch was 535.000 acres? Larger than the city of Los Angeles... He died in the late thirties and his estate last year sold the ranch for $725 million to the owner of the LA Rams professional football team.
Meanwhile, back to Royal Ford
Recently, the gardener on the property realized that the bucket he was using in his garden had a name on it.  That name was Royal Ford. Seems it was the horse's feed bucket.

Horse Racing was voted in in Texas in 1933.....but NOT Gambling
The Texas House repealed that in 1937 when they discovered that gambling was going on at Arlington Downs. It wasn't until 1989 that betting on horses was  legalized in Texas.

Speaking of Mr. Waggoner my next post will be a tour of his daughter's home  in Fort Worth. A mansion  saved from the wrecking ball, and sits today as a reminder of the glamorous days of yesteryear!


  1. How interesting! And we just saw on the weather that it will be in the 80s there today...warmer than we are! Enjoy your weekend!

  2. You have such nice stories to tell. Interesting histories.

  3. Blimey what a fabulous tale Janey, a wee bit of everything 😊 That was a lot of land and a lot of money but the best thing is that Royal Ford was a white horse, j'adore white horses.. when I used to go to the horse racing years ago with my dad I always picked the white horse 😁