Dallas was a very active scene for the Civil Rights Movement. Many rallies and protests took place in the Dallas area. Fort Worth residents thought of Dallas as a trend setter city and as a more dramatic city than their own town. Dallas had more people and was a bigger city than Fort Worth during segregation, which may have been a reason that it had more active protest.
Many people in Fort Worth during segregation felt that their city followed along with what Dallas did with the movement but on a much smaller scale. Below are videos of Fort Worth residents describing and comparing Fort Worth to Dallas during segregation.
“I’d like to say that Fort Worth had a benevolent racism, ya know. Definitely segregated. Definitely people who hated the big’ins, ya know we had all that. But the White leadership here was a lot more benevolent than in a lot of other cities including Dallas for example. There weren’t a lot suits, there weren’t a lot of demonstrations, there was some to try to get drivers for Mrs.Bairds Bakery.”
– Bob Ray Sanders
Roy Brooks states “Fort Worth has always been a town that reacted to things as if ‘you ignore them they will go away’. So the reaction of the power structure [to civil rights] was pretty much benign neglect. There were no Ku Klux Klan counter demonstrators that I recall… but ultimately the Safeway Grocery stores did integrate, ultimately the schools in Fort Worth did integrate, but not in time for me. I graduated from a segregated high school in 1967, 13 years after the Brown vs. Board of Education decision declared that schools should be integrated with all deliberate speed. Well in Fort Worth, deliberate speed took 15 years.”
Marjorie Crenshaw “I still don’t see that resistance in Fort Worth like I did in Dallas.”