Details for The Hill (Atlas Number 5507013697)

Historical Marker — Atlas Number 5507013697

Data

Marker Number 13697
Atlas Number 5507013697
Marker Title The Hill
Index Entry Hill, The
Address 400 W Sanford St
City Arlington
County Tarrant
UTM Zone 14
UTM Easting 676922
UTM Northing 3624131
Subject Codes African American topics; neighborhoods
Marker Year 2006
Recorded Texas Historic Landmark No
Private Property No
Marker Location 400 W. Sanford St. in George Stevens Park
Marker Condition In Situ
Marker Size 27" x 42"
Marker Text A roughly five-block area of Arlington known as "The Hill" was the only addition specifically set aside for the city's African American residents. In the 1890s, the community began developing on land that once belonged to Martin V. and Rebecca A. Thomas. Also during this time, several churches organized in the emerging community. The Church of God in Christ, Mt. Olive Baptist Church and the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, now known as Armstrong Chapel AME, became leading institutions in the neighborhood. Mt. Olive, in particular, became a center for spiritual life while also hosting many community and social events. In 1907, Arlington resident Edward F. Wilkerson subdivided land known as the Wilkerson Addition that became the core of The Hill. Growth occurred in the following years as a vibrant community emerged including grocery stores, clubs and restaurants opening by the 1920s. Other important institutions included a school, which the county first established for Arlington's African American children in the 1890s. The last segregated school in The Hill, named for Booker T. Washington, was built in 1953 and closed as integration took place in the 1960s. Another vital part of the neighborhood was this park, which the city opened in the mid-1950s and named for George Stevens, principal of Booker T. Washington School. Although The Hill was originally a rural community, it became more densely populated and urban as the city grew out to meet it by the 1930s. From the mid-1940s through the 1960s, The Hill began to decline as job opportunities and social changes led residents to other areas. Today, The Hill has become an ethnically diverse community. (2006)