80 Delightful Facts about Dallas

The Dallas Cowboys, the JFK assassination, and 7-Eleven: these are just a few of the things Dallas is famous for.

Below you’ll learn a whole lot more about the “Big D” with these fun and interesting facts about Dallas, Texas! Well you’re at it, you can find even more fun tidbits with these fun Texas facts and fun facts about Austin, the capital of Texas.

General Dallas Facts

  • Dallas is the third-largest city in the US state of Texas, after Houston and San Antonio, but larger than the state capital, Austin.
  • With a population of 1.3 million, Dallas is the 9th largest city in the United States, putting it between San Diego and San Jose, both located in California.
  • Dallas is similar in size to Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • The Greater Dallas Area, which includes Fort Worth, Irving, and Arlington (also called Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex or DFW), has a population of 7.6 million, making it the 4th largest metropolitan area in the United States and the largest one in the Southern United States.
  • Around a quarter of all Texans live in the Dallas Fort Worth area.
  • Dallas Fort Worth is the largest metropolitan area in the US that is not on a major body of water.
  • Dallas is the northernmost major city in the state of Texas.
  • The city sits at the same latitude as Tel Aviv, Israel.
  • The highest temperature ever recorded in Dallas was 113 °F (45°C) in 1980, while the lowest was −3°F (−19°C) in 1930.
Traffic heading to downtown Dallas at dawn
En route to Dallas
  • Dallas may have been named after Vice President George M. Dallas or his brother Commodore Alexander James Dallas.
  • The official abbreviation for Dallas is DTX, while the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport code is DFW.
  • Some common nicknames for Dallas are Big D, D-Town, Triple D, and City of Hate (the later came after JFK was assassinated there).
  • Slogans for Dallas have included “Live Large, Think Big”, “Dallas: Big Things Happen Here”, and “Find Your All.”
  • People from Dallas are called Dallasites.
  • 42% of Dallasites are Hispanic or Latino American.
The flag of Dallas, Texas
The Dallas city flag
  • The Dallas flag shows a white star containing the city’s seal on a red and blue background.
  • Dallas has nine sister cities, including Taipei (Taiwan), Dijon (France), and Kolkata (India).

Interesting Facts about Dallas Places

  • The tallest building in Dallas is the Bank of America Plaza, which has 74 floors and stands 921 ft (280.7 m) tall.
Reunion Tower in Dallas
Reunion Tower and Hyatt Regency
  • Plano, a northern suburb of Dallas, has one of the largest Chinese populations in the US.
  • Dallas has one of the country’s largest park systems, with 406 parks taking up 33 mi2 (85 km2) of land in the city, including the popular Klyde Warren Park downtown.
  • The ongoing Trinity River Corridor Project is one of the large public works ever made, and when completed will be one of the country’s largest urban parks.
Some important buildings in downtown Dallas
Dealey Plaza and the Old Red Museum
  • The Great Trinity Forest, part of the corridor project, is the largest urban forest in the US.
  • The Dallas Zoo, opened in 1888, is the oldest zoo in Texas, and one of the 10 oldest zoos in the US.
  • The State Fair of Texas, held annually at Fair Park in Dallas, is considered one of the country’s best and draws in over 2 million people.
  • Big Tex, a 55 ft (17 m) cowboy statue at Fair Park is a symbol of Dallas and Texas. In 2012, it was burned in an electrical fire and had to be rebuilt.  
  • An original copy of the Declaration of Independence is on display in the Erik Jonsson Central branch of the Dallas Public Library.
A statue of a cowboy called Big Tex in Dallas
Big Tex at the Dallas State Fair (By Paul Komarek licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0, changes made)
  • The Christmas tree in Galleria Dallas mall is the largest indoor Christmas tree in the United States, at 95 ft (29 m), and with 450,000 lights. The star on top weighs 100 pounds.
  • The Children’s Medical Center Dallas has the largest model train in the US. When the facility almost removed it in 2020, former patients convinced them to keep it.

Dallas Economy and Society Facts

  • The Greater Dallas Area has the 6th largest economy in the US, between Washington DC and Houston.
  • Dallas is home to 10 Fortune 500 countries, including AT&T and Southwest Airlines.
  • Other companies that started in Dallas include 7-Eleven, Michaels Arts & Crafts, Hotels.com, and Cookies by Design.
A mosaic of the logos of companies that were founded in Dallas texas
Major companies founded in Dallas
  • Dallas’ crime rate is about half that of Detroit, but double that of New York City.
  • Dallas has been called the “Prison Ministry Capital of the World”, with over 60 prison ministries operating in the city and helping inmates rehabilitate.
  • Dallas received 27.7 million visitors in 2019, with 6% of them coming from abroad. It was the most visited city in Texas. The Greater Dallas Area received just under 50 million visitors.
Dallas airport viewed from above
The Dallas Fort Worth International Airport
  • Dallas has more shopping centers in the United States, including the country’s 2nd mall, Highland Park Village.
  • Dallas Fort Worth has 27 billionaires, or 40% of all the billionaires in Texas.
  • Dallas has one of the largest and most visible LGBTQ+ populations in America.
  • 18% of people in Dallas live below the poverty line.
  • Alice Walton, daughter of WalMart founder Sam Walton, is the richest person in Dallas, with a net worth of 65.2 billion USD.
  • 69% of Dallas residents voted for Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election.
Looking up at some skyscrapers in downtown Dallas
The Dallas Financial District
  • Kirby’s Pig Stand, which opened in Dallas in 1921, is thought to be the first drive-in restaurant in the United States.
  • The frozen margarita machine was invented in Dallas by restaurant owner Mariano Martinez in 1971.
  • The integrated circuit chip (a precursor to the microchip) was invented in Dallas in 1958.
  • Movies and TV shows filmed partially or wholly in Dallas include Bonnie and Clyde, RoboCop, Walker Texas Ranger, and JFK.

Dallas Sports Facts

  • The Dallas Cowboys are the most valuable sports franchise in the United States, valued at 2.3 billion USD. They’ve won the Super Bowl 5 times.
  • The term “Super Bowl” was coined by Lamar Hunt, founder of the American Football League, when he lived in Dallas.
AT&T Stadium in Dallas during a Cowboys game
AT&T Stadium (“dallas-cowboys-stadium-06” by VSELLIS is marked with CC BY-SA 2.0)
  • The AT&T Stadium (formerly Cowboys Stadium) in Arlington is home to the Dallas Cowboys. It is the largest NFL stadium by seating capacity (80,000).  
  • Famous athletes who were born or played in Dallas include Dennis Rodman, Grant Hill and C.J. Miles, (basketball), Deon Sanders (football), and Ernie Banks (baseball).
  • Lee Trevino, one of the most famous golfers ever, is from Dallas.
  • Five-time Olympic medalist gymnast Nastia Liukin was born in Russia but lives in Dallas.

Other Famous Dallas People

  • Actors/Actress Luke and Owen Wilson and Angie Harmon, were born in Dallas.
  • Melinda Gates, former wife of Bill Gates, was born in Dallas.
  • Former US president George W. Bush was born in Connecticut but currently lives in Dallas.
A mosaic of famous people from Dallas, Texas
Famous Dallas celebrities Stevie Ray Vaughan, George W. Bush, Melinda Gates, Owen Wilson, Selena Gomez, and Erykah Badu (clockwise from top-left)
  • Singers Erykah Badu, Usher, Selena Gomez, Jessica Simpson, and Ashlee Simpson come from the Greater Dallas Area. Norah Jones was born in New York City but grew up in Dallas.
  • Other musicians from Dallas include rappers Vanilla Ice and the D.O.C., guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, and country band The Chicks.
  • Dallas has produced 6 Nobel Prize winners: Michael S. Brown, Joseph Goldstein, Bruce A. Beutler, Alfred G. Gilman (all physiology/medicine), Johann Deisenhofer (chemistry), and Russell A. Hulse (physics).

Dallas History Facts

  • The Caddo people were the original inhabitants of the Dallas area.
  • From the 18th century on, the area of Dallas has belonged to Spain, France, Mexico, the Republic of Texas, the Confederates, and the United States.
A wooden cabin that was used by the founder of Dallas
John Neely Bryan’s cabin replica at Founder’s Plaza by Michael Barera is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
  • John Neely Bryan founded the city of Dallas in 1841, during the Republic of Texas, when Texas was its own country.
  • In 1910s, Dallas’ population surpassed 100,000.
  • In 1927, 7-Eleven opened in Dallas, becoming the world’s first convenience store.
  • In 1930, Bonnie and Clyde met in Dallas and began their famous crime spree in Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana.
  • In 1963, President JFK was shot and killed during a parade on Elm Street in Dallas. The event is memorialized at the Sixth Floor Museum.
The exterior of the building where J.F.K. was assassinated
The Sixth Floor Museum, from where JFK was shot
  • In 1974, the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport was opened.
  • In 1976, Thanks-Giving Square was completed downtown.
  • Annette Strauss became the first female mayor of Dallas in 1987.
  • Dallas’ population surpassed 1 million in 1990.
  • In 1994, Dallas hosted six games of the FIFA World Cup.
  • The Red Line of the DART Light Rail system first began operating in 1996.
A DART light rail train driving on the street in Dallas
The Dallas DART Light Rail
  • In 2000, Cityplace Station became the first subway station in Texas.
  • In 2014, Dallas was home to the first case of Ebola in the United States.
  • In 2016, Micah Xavier Johnson shot and killed five police officers in Dallas as retribution for the killing of black men by police officers.