State Fair of Texas

The State Fair of Texas has been a major state event since 1886, when the Dallas State Fair opened in East Dallas on land that would become Fair Park. When the rival Texas State Fair & Exposition merged with the Dallas State Fair the next year, attendance soared, more land was purchased, and the Texas State Fair & Dallas Exposition was born. In the coming decades, the State Fair saw visits from national figures such as John Philip Sousa, William Jennings Bryan, Carrie Nation, Booker T. Washington, Elvis Presley, and Presidents Taft, Wilson, and Nixon.

The annual Texas-OU football game, now known as the Red River Rivalry, became a fixture of the State Fair beginning in 1929, with Fair Park Stadium (renamed the Cotton Bowl) erected on the old race track the following year. The 52 foot “talking” cowboy figure known as Big Tex first greeted fair visitors in 1952 and soon became the face of the fair.

Fair Park was officially designated as a National Historical Landmark in 1986, with a record-setting attendance of nearly four million. In the 2000s, the State Fair of Texas also gained notoriety for its unusual fried foods, with contests highlighting such items as fried butter, fried coke, and fried bacon.

Results  (16  1 from 1 pages)
The Richard Eisenhour Collection, no. 10 - Texas Centennial Exposition (1936)
Home movie footage of Texas’s centennial celebration in Dallas’s Fair Park
The Peter Pauls Stewart Collection - State Fair of Texas (1956-7)
Home movie of a Dallas family visiting the State Fair of Texas, including a Ford Motor Company show and c...
The Galloway Caylor Collection - State Fair of Texas
Home movie from the early 1950s of attractions at the State Fair of Texas, including rides and an ice-ska...
The Blount Collection - Family Fun
Home movie of the Bount family having fun across the state, from Easter egg hunts to Barton Springs to th...
Texas State Fair (1968)
This silent film documents the Texas State Fair at Fair Park in Dallas. Footage taken from the gr...
Texas Centennial Highlights (1936)
Promotional film for the Texas Centennial Exposition held at Fair Park in 1936
Texas - The Big State
Commissioned by the Santa Fe Railway Company and produced by Dudley Pictures Corporation, this film provi...
State Fair of Texas: Showplace, Outtakes (1982)
Entertaining outtakes from “State Fair of Texas: Showplace.”
State Fair of Texas: Showplace (1982)
Promotional film for the State Fair of Texas highlighting the benefits of marketing your products at the ...
State Fair of Texas (1968)
Promotional film highlighting the State Fair of Texas in 1968
State Fair of Texas, Centennial Exposition (1936)
Scenes of the Texas Centennial Exposition held at Fair Park in 1936
Sessions Family Films - State Fair of Texas
Home movie footage from the early 1960s of a visit to the Texas State Fair in Dallas
Firemen Attend Kids' Day at the State Fair
Footage from Kids’ Day at the State Fair of Texas, including rides, fair midway, and firemen speaking to ...
Dallas Fire Department Community Events
Compilation of footage from several events sponsored by the Dallas Fire Department
A Day at the State Fair of Texas (1941)
An entertaining promotional film for the State Fair of Texas with a classic plot
1961 Texas State Fair Fire Pump Races
Footage from the 1961 Pump Races held at the State Fair