Weatherford, Texas is a town located 25 miles west of Fort Worth, TX, on U.S Highway 180. It is the county seat of Parker County. Parker County is known as the Peach Capital of Texas with a popular Peach Festival held each year that draws thousand to taste and enjoy various products made from Peaches grown locally. Weatherford is also known for the Championship Cutting Horses raised on nearby ranches. There as always been along time relationship in Weatherford to early cattle drives, movie and television stars and state and National politicians. It is located in a part Texas identified as the "Bible Belt" and churches of most every denomination can be found for worship. Those interested in achitecture will find many well preserved building from the local community college,county courthouse and other stately structures. Here you can also find in the shadows of literature, the theater, moves and television stories related to the "Lonesome Dove," Peter Pan and the television show "Dallas."
Backstory and Context
After the Civil War there was a great call for beef in the eastern United States. Herds of cattle roamed freely in South and Southwest Texas. Oliver Loving was one of the ."..suppliers of beef to the Confederate Army during the Civil War." It was a natural thing after the war for him to become a cattle drover and herd the cattle to the nearest railroad which at the time was in Kansas. Three major cattle trails were nearby, one of them being Goodnight-Loving Cattle Trail founded Oliver Loving. Charlie Goodnight became Loving's partner and it was on a cattle drive to New Mexico when Loving was wounded by Indians and died shortly after. Goodnight brought him back 600 miles to be buried in Texas where he wanted to be buried.
Charlie Goodnight, Oliver Loving and a freed slave, Bose Ikard who also was on that cattle drive are all buried in Old Greenwood Cemetery in Weatherford. There story of friendship was told by author Larry McMurtry in the book and television movie "Lonesome Dove." Goodnight was also the inventor of the first chuck wagon used on cattle drives.
In the front of the Weatherford Library there is a statue of Peter Pan who was portrayed on the Broadway Stage by Broadway Star Mary Martin. She was born here in Weatherford along with her son Larry Hagman who portrayed the villainous J. R. Ewing on the Television show "Dallas". Mary Martin is buried here in the Old Weatherford Greenwood Cemetery.
There are numerous historic homes and building from the turn of the 20th century. The Parker County Courthouse represents the Second Empire style of architecture