Pendery’s World of Chiles & Spices | Historic Fort Worth

Fort Worth has a long history filled with cowboys, saloons, cattle, and outlaws. It also has a connection to chile powder.

The West was said to begin here in Fort Worth, and while the Chisholm Trail brought people with an unruly nature it also lured legitimate businessmen from across the US seeking to reap the benefits of a prosperous cattle town. One of those men was DeWitt Clinton Pendery. He came from Cincinnati with his sights set on making his fortune in the spice business in 1870. By 1890, he had taken his regional love of chiles to the next level by creating a unique American spice blend called Chile Powder. Although William Gebhardt is sometimes credited with the title of "Father of Chili Powder," Pendery began commercially producing and advertising his Chiltomaline concoction a few years before Gebhardt's New Braunfels version rose in popularity between 1894 and 1896.

Over the years, Fort Worth has made many changes since the days of Hell's Half Acre. As the landscape morphed to accommodate this fast growing city, the Pendery's shop no longer sits in the original location. It can now be found inside a house that sits on the edge of a historic district in the shadows of the skyscrapers of Downtown.