The WPA Dallas Guide and History Page: 392
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37. REVERCHON PARK (admission free), Welborn Street, Maple Avenue, the
Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad and St. Louis & Southwestern Railway tracks, for-
merly known as Turtle Creek Park, was purchased by the city in 1914 for $31,128.
It was named for Julien Reverchon, noted botanist who came to Dallas with the La
Reunion colony. Its 39 acres lying along Turtle Creek were formerly a slum area
called Woodchuck Hill, occupied by the makeshift shacks and hovels of a squatters'
colony. But this has been transformed into one of the beauty spots of Dallas, popu-
lar for picnics, sports, and outings. The park contains a comfort station, conces-
sion stand, grandstand, three baseball diamonds, two tennis courts, roque and cro-
quet courts, benches and tables for picnics, an iris bowl, sunken garden, and an
open-air theater on the creek banks where each year the various playgrounds of the
city compete in the finals of a one-act play contest.
For the visitor the park is interesting chiefly for its trees and springs. The former
include the tallest oak tree in Dallas, and the latter Raccoon Spring, famous as a
stand for deer hunting in pioneer days; both are in the northeast corner of the
park. The Gill Well mineral springs are near the south entrance on Maple Avenue.
The discovery of the Gill Well, which occurred at about the turn of the century, was
an accidental by-product of Dallas' perennial search in early days for an adequate
water supply. It cost the city about $25,000, and flows at a rate of 500,000 gallons
About two-thirds of the water is from the mineral flow, which is 900 feet below
ground. The water, which resembles in many respects the mineral waters of Euro-
pean resorts and is used in several county and city institutions, is carried to the
surface in pipes and can be drawn from taps arranged around a semicircle of ma-
sonry near the entrance to the park. Here cars stop at all hours of the day, and
people alight to drink the water or to fill bottles and pails. Caution is advised in its
use, as it is a powerful purgative. An analysis made by M. J. Dorns of the Science
Department of Fort Worth University in 1904 revealed the following contents in
terms of grains to the gallon:
Silicon Dioxide 5.2
Sodium & Potassium 134.0
When this water was analyzed by the Chemistry Department of the University of
Texas in 1924, the following minerals were discovered in one gallon:
Sodium Sulphate 338 grains
Magnesium Chloride 65 grains
Magnesium Sulphate 65 grains
Calcium Carbonate 65 grains
Calcium Sulphate 65 grains
Ferric Hydroxide 60 grains
Sodium Carbonate 60 grains
38. FISHTRAP CEMETERY (open sunrise to sunset), west side of Fishtrap
Road, 0.5 miles north of Eagle Ford Road, sometimes called the Old French Ceme-
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Writers' Program of the Work Projects Administration in the City of Dallas. The WPA Dallas Guide and History, book, 1992; Dallas, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28336/m1/416/?q=%22gill%20well%22: accessed April 19, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Press.