The 1954 DFW map shows the new SH 183 and a fair amount of the secondary roads that existed between the cities. This was the oldest map I’ve found showing the entire DFW area. Other maps dated 1950 and 1942 were separate pages for each city, indicating to me that there simply wasn’t enough of substance between the cities to warrant including the detail on a combined map.
My own recollections as a young boy in 1954 are that there were mostly wide open spaces between the cities and also between the 2 highways, 80 & 183. Later maps are readily available at various specialized websites which would show the area filling in. However, this 1954 map illustrates about the last year a map could be drawn still showing so much open space between Dallas and Ft. Worth.
In the 1920s to the 1940s you would have used either US 80 or a series of country roads to drive between the cities. Note that Lake Arlington does not show on the 1954 map as it wasn’t filled until 1957. Our trips to the grandmothers’ houses were taken on SH 183 to Loop 12 to Buckner and down to White Rock; or, down Harry Hines right through the center of Dallas on Commerce and out Grand Ave. to Garland Rd.