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The Dallas Zoo started in 1888 with two mountain lions and two deer.

1888

The Dallas Zoo is founded when a man from Colorado City sells two deer and two mountain lions to the City of Dallas for $60 and they are placed in pens in City Park.  City Park is the first city-owned and operated park.

1910
Although the Zoo is a very popular attraction, the collection has grown to 27 animals and needs a larger space.  The entire collection is moved to Fair Park.

1912

Due to an expanding and prosperous State Fair, the Zoo is removed from Fair Park and relocates to its current location, Marsalis Park in Oak Cliff.    The Zoo then becomes an educational facility rather than a mere collection of assorted animals.

Today

In April, the Dallas Zoo opens its new $14 million, 2.1-acre In April, the Dallas Zoo opens its new $14 million, 2.1-acre Simmons Hippo Outpost, an immersive African waterhole habitat that includes an underwater viewing area., an immersive African waterhole habitat that includes an underwater viewing area.

History of the Dallas Zoo