Commercial city in northeastern Texas, USA, on the Trinity River; seat of Dallas County; population (2000 est) 1,188,600. The second-largest city in Texas (Houston is the largest), Dallas is the hub of a rich cotton-farming and oil-producing region, and is one of the leading cultural and manufacturing centres in the Southwest; its industries include banking, insurance, oil, aviation, aerospace, and electronics. Dallas was founded in 1841, and was incorporated as a city in 1871.
History From its beginnings as a trading post (the John Neely Bryan Cabin is a reconstruction of the original 1841 log cabin), it developed as the focus of a cotton area. The Dallas Cotton Exchange was built in 1907, and by the 1920s 40% of US cotton came from the area. The East Texas oilfield was discovered in 1930, and the city became an important centre for the oil industry. It grew rapidly after World War II, with aircraft manufacturing, electronics, car assembly, and the manufacture of cotton-ginning machinery. It became a leading insurance centre, and the banking and financial centre for the Southwest.
President John F Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas on 22 November 1963; the event is marked by the John F Kennedy Memorial Plaza. In the Texas School Book Depository, from which Lee Harvey Oswald is alleged to have fired, is an exhibition, The Sixth Floor.
Features One of the oldest buildings here is the Old Red Courthouse (1892). There are renovated early 20th-century brick warehouses in the West End Historic District, frame houses in the Wilson Block Historic District, and prairie-style mansions in Swiss Avenue. At Fair Park there is a collection of Art Moderne buildings, mainly from the 1936 Texas Centennial Exhibition, with murals in the Hall of State depicting the history of Texas. Several of the skyscrapers, built mainly in the 1980s, were designed by the architect I M Pei, including the First Interstate Bank Tower (1986), and Dallas City Hall. Pei also designed the Morton H Meyerson Symphony Center (1989). Museums include the Dallas Museum of Natural History (1936), the Dallas Museum of Art (1984), and the Women's Museum: An Institute for the Future (2000), designed by Wendy Evans Joseph. The Kalita Humphreys Theater (1959) was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Dallas has a symphony orchestra, and opera company, and a ballet company. Dallas–Fort Worth International Airport (1973) is one of the largest in the world. Texas Stadium, the home of the Dallas Cowboys professional football team, is the site of the annual Cotton Bowl football game.
Dallas is the seat of several colleges including Baylor College of Dentistry (1905), Baylor School of Nursing (1909), Southern Methodist University (1911), Dallas Theological Seminary (1924), the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas (1943), Dallas Christian College (1950), Dallas Baptist University (1965), and the University of Dallas (1956). The city is named after former vice-president, George Dallas.
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