Today, the picturesque gardens surrounding the remains of the teahouse are used for special occasions such marriage proposals and prayers. Top O' Hill Terrace 2. An ardent proponent of prohibition and gambling reform, he converted the property from a casino to a seminary, which continues to stand today, however, many of the historic structures from the Top O' Hill Terrace's notorious days still stand. What is now the girls' dormitory for the Seminary was once a brothel which pandered to every desire of Top O' Hill's patrons and was littered with beautiful evening dresses when the Seminary took over. In , Texas Ranger Captain M.
Known as Top O' Hill Terrace, the popular spot attracted gamblers as well as visitors who were often unaware of the gaming activities. In the late s, Fred and Mary Browning purchased the property and shortly began converting the facilities into a casino, adding an escape tunnel and secret room for hiding the gambling paraphernalia during raids. Today, the picturesque gardens surrounding the remains of the teahouse are used for special occasions such marriage proposals and prayers. Contemporary to the Top O' Hill heyday was the outspoken Dr. Oldham, the Bible Baptist Seminary bought the property and relocated here, fulfilling Norris' promise, although neither he nor Browning had lived to see it. Known as Top O' Hill Terrace, the establishment continued to operate as a tearoom alongside the casino and a brothel, attracting both gamblers, as well as visitors who came for tea and were often unaware of the illegal gaming activities going on down below. Oldham and the Bible Baptist Seminary, which relocated there and still occupies the property today. Notable features of the park include the front gate, which was designed and crafted by Southern Ornamental Ironworks of Arlington, an inspiring statue of Norris by acclaimed sculptor Pompeo Coppini, and the horse stables. A pretty gazebo anchored the tea garden and was the stage for many instrumental groups, music groups, and other ensembles, who played live music in the evenings against a beautiful backdrop of sweeping views. History Established in the early s by Beulah Adams Marshall who bought the land and opened a restaurant and tea room patrons from Fort Worth and Dallas, the property was then converted into a casino in the mids by Fred and Mary Browning complete with a secret room and escape tunnel and for hiding the illegal gambling paraphernalia. In late , under the leadership of Earl K. The restaurant, along with the tea garden that exists today, was a legitimate business, operating alongside a brothel as well as the casino, which benefited from the nearby Arlington Downs Racetrack. Built to house the prize racehorse Royal Ford, who beat Sea Biscuit in , the Royal Ford Stable features a French-Norman inspired roof, beautiful interior oak paneling, original hopper windows, and the original watering trough on the south side. Originally used for housing racehorses, including the magnificent Colorado Lad and Valdina Lamar, the horse barn is now used as classrooms for the Seminary. An ardent proponent of prohibition and gambling reform, he converted the property from a casino to a seminary, which continues to stand today, however, many of the historic structures from the Top O' Hill Terrace's notorious days still stand. Top O' Hill Terrace 1. The foot-long, four-foot-wide and foot-high tunnel opened onto the thickly wooded countryside of the park where escaping patrons could hide in the bush or make their way well-groomed walkways to the tea garden. Top O' Hill Terrace More: Top O' Hill Terrace 2. Such structures include a stable and horse barn Browning's award-winning stud, Royal Ford, and his champion racehorses, Colorado Lad and Valdina Lamar, as well as a brothel, swimming pool, and tea gazebo. Structures Located north of the main house, the tea garden was surrounded by sandstone walls and iron fencing with a lovely garden that contained benches, shrubs, plants and a pond with swans. The unique and favorite aspect of the Top O' Hill Terrace, however, is the underground concrete tunnel, which is said to have provided an easy and fast escape route from the casino for patrons when the casino was raided by police. In , Texas Ranger Captain M. Boasting beautiful views over Fort Worth, the tea garden was set on one of the highest points in Tarrant County and was a favorite afternoon tea and dining spot. The Horse Barn is a large building with a rustic Woodbine sandstone exterior, three cupolas on the roof peak, and hollow tile-faced stone interiors. What is now the girls' dormitory for the Seminary was once a brothel which pandered to every desire of Top O' Hill's patrons and was littered with beautiful evening dresses when the Seminary took over. The property was then purchased in by Earl K.
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