The Hampshire neighborhood, which is sometimes
called South Meadowbrook, is located approximately three miles from the Fort Worth
Central Business District and is included in the 1860 George N. Butts Survey and the
1858 Perry Anderson Survey. It is bounded by Lancaster Ave. on the north, Loop 820 on
the east, the Union Pacific Railroad tracks on the south and Beach Street on the west.
Lancaster Avenue has undergone several name changes
throughout its history. An 1876 map shows it as the Old Dallas Road, then in 1886, it was
renamed Front Street and extended to the eastern and western city limits. Sometime after 1886,
it was renamed Texas Street for a short period and finally was renamed Lancaster Avenue in 1931
in honor of T & P Railway President, John L. Lancaster.
The Texas and Pacific Railway (now Union Pacific) that runs along
the southern border of this area came to Fort Worth from Dallas in 1876 because of the efforts of
the entire citizenry of the village of Fort Worth. The town leaders at that time knew the railway
was vital to the continued existence of Fort Worth, and insightful leaders such as B.B. Paddock saw
Fort Worth as the center of railroad lines extending in all directions. Paddock's map showing his idea
was called the Tarantula after resemblance to a spider.
There was also an interurban electric rail line operated by the
Northern Texas Traction Company, running between Fort Worth and Dallas which passed through a part of
the Hampshire neighborhood. This line opened in June of 1902 in the center median of the present day
Highway 180, and in 1908 it charged five cents, traveled eight miles per hour and was furnished with brown
leather seats which had the reputation of getting a little sticky during summer weather. This line remained
open for 32 years and earned the company $1,250,000 in 1909. Texas Motorcoaches, a subsidiary of the Northern
Texas Traction Company replaced the rail service with busses after automobiles made rail service unprofitable.
Some of the early property owners in Hampshire included Louise Davis in 1906,
James Woodlan in 1906, W.C. King in 1905, and J.F. Ingram whose family retained land from 1925 to 1982.