The Dallas Morning News Building at the corner of Houston and Young Streets opened in 1949. It is affectionately known as the “Rock of Truth” building due to the inscription on the building’s front façade, which was taken from a 1906 address to employees by vice president and general manager of the corporation at the time, George Dealey. The Dallas Morning News began publication on October 1, 1885 in conjunction with the pre-existing Galveston News. These two newspapers were the first in the country to publish simultaneous editions thanks to being linked by 315 miles of telegraph lines. George Dealey began working for Galveston News as an office boy in 1874 at the age of 15, and worked his way up the corporate ladder until he bought the Dallas Morning News in 1926.
George Dahl, one of Dallas most prolific and preeminent architects, designed the original front portion of the building which has been added on to over the years in different phases. The interior also went through an extensive remodel in the 1960s removing original Dahl features and a lobby mural painted by Perry Nichols chronicling the history of Texas and The Dallas Morning News. The mural was sent to the University of Texas after removal and then came back to the TXCN building on The News campus in the 1980s where it was installed and stayed until 2017 when it was removed and sent back to the University of Texas. The rear section of The News building was devoted to the three-story tall printing presses which were shuttered when the printing of the paper moved to a facility in Plano in the 1980s leaving a large expanse of the building vacant. The exterior of the of the building remains largely intact with its most identifiable feature the “Rock of Truth” inscription and its metal spandrels between the windows featuring the outline of Texas.
The Dallas Morning News has relocated to another George Dahl designed building – the old Central Public Library on Commerce Street next to The Statler – leaving the 1949 building vacant. Earlier this year The Dallas Morning News hired architecture firm GFF to study the feasibility of the reuse of the building. Hopefully the value of the important history of the building will be recognized and its architecture by George Dahl preserved, even if it’s only the front portion of the building. If the building goes up for sale it could be demolished by its next owner for new development on the site, which would leave Dallas without a physical connection to this important piece of our city’s history.
UPDATE: The building has been sold with the new owner looking to convert it into a boutique hotel.