Crown Point Community Library

IF SOLON COULD SEE US NOW?

The blog and online exhibit center for the Indiana Room.

Library Cards in Crown Point: 110 Years of “Signing Up”

The Library has served the community for 110 years as the Crown Point Community Library.  Opening in 1908, after 2 years of planning and building, the Crown Point Carnegie Library was accessible to those in Crown Point and Center Township.  The Carnegie Library at Crown Point was named after philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, who gave $12,000 toward the building and establishment of the library.  He felt so strongly that communities should have free access to knowledge that he donated over $60 million to fund 1,689 public libraries across the United States.

Prior to the Carnegie library, there was a brief existence of a McClure (Maclure/McLure) Library Association.  After earning his fortune and helping to form New Harmony, William Maclure died in 1840.  His last will established funds for the formation of Workingmen’s Institutes in Indiana communities, modeled after the one in New Harmony.  It took 15 years to settle his estate and allow for the distribution of funds starting in 1855.  The will required the following: the group had to serve proof that members were laborers, the library had to have an initial inventory of 100 volumes, and there had to be a place to gather – illustrate these requirements and you were awarded $500.  However, the funds only went so far – no additional funds would be granted, there were no rules on how to administer the books, and the institute didn’t need to have a permanent home.

As in the case of the Crown Point Maclure Institute, which originated in 1857, many Workingmen’s Institutes ceased operations shortly after they were established due to lack of sustainability.  20 years after the moneys started distribution, only 17 of the 149 clubs were still in existence in 1875.  Crown Point’s only lasted another 10 years before it ceased existence.  The exact location for the Crown Point Workingmen’s is unknown; it is suspected to have rotated among members of the club.  The collection was no longer used and the club was finally disbanded in 1885.  At that time, the remaining volumes of the collection were donated to the high school.  It would be another 23 years before the community had a library again.

In 1906, interested Crown Pointers organized a 9 member board to establish the Crown Point Library.  Early in 1908, property was purchased and construction began on Main Street thanks to the Carnegie donation.  The library opened before the year ended.  For over 63 years, the Carnegie library served Crown Point, Center and Winfield Townships.  This area was growing so much that the library needed to grow too.  In 1971, construction began on the expansion of the library and it was completed at the end of 1972.  January 4, 1973, was the open house of the new library, with its new entrance on Court Street.  Approximately 1000 books were checked out on that day!

Since the new library was built, the Carnegie Library was renovated as the library offices and public meeting space.  Library card holders increased 8% in the first 4 years of opening the new library – 36% of the library’s service area were card holders.  Both the Crown Point area and the library saw much expansion over the next 40 years.  So much so that it became evident the library had outgrown its space.  Since there was no room to expand at its Court Street location, the library board began looking at other options in Crown Point.

The current library building on North Main Street, 3 times bigger than the old location, opened in October 2012. Library card holders have increased at a high rate since the opening of this new library building.  The year before it opened, only 55% of all service area residents were card holders.  That increased by almost 20% by the year after this building opened.  Today, 6 years since this library facility opened its door, 85% of service area residents are card holders.  Crown Point is an active, library supporting community – the community definitely are incredible library card holders!

Sources and Further Reading

https://www.courierpress.com/story/life/columnists/2017/04/17/history-lesson-workingmens-institute-founded-william-maclure-1838/100428272/

https://www.npr.org/2013/08/01/207272849/how-andrew-carnegie-turned-his-fortune-into-a-library-legacy

https://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/lake/crown-point/new-owner-plans-move-into-former-c-p-carnegie-library/article_73eab06e-99ae-5d6e-9a01-0ea830d80dcb.html

https://www.nwitimes.com/lifestyles/andrew-carnegie-brought-libraries-and-a-boost-to-literacy-to/article_d1d4c815-7a35-5e21-9e5e-2049463091b8.html

https://www.in.gov/library/plstats.htm

http://www.ala.org/news/press-releases/2018/06/incredibles-use-superpowers-library-card-sign-month

http://www.ala.org/conferencesevents/celebrationweeks/card

Indiana Room Books

History of Crown Point-Center Library, 1857-1980 Proctor, Ruby M.  IN 027.477299 PRO

Maclure libraries in Indiana McBride, Frances Helmerick  IN 027.477 MCB

Maclure libraries in Indiana and Illinois McBride, Frances Helmerick  IN 027.477 MCB

Temples of knowledge: Andrew Carnegie’s gift to Indiana McPherson, Alan  IN 027.4781 MCP

 

Indiana Rocks!

When thinking of rock and roll, jazz, and musical talent, the Hoosier State is often not the place that comes to mind.  Indiana has its famous, and not so famous, musical inclinations, often without people realizing how influential it has been to the music world we know today.

Importance of Jazz in Indianapolis

There’s a section of Indiana Avenue in Indianapolis where the nights were filled with revelry and music in the 1930s and 1940s.  Numerous clubs along the Avenue, perhaps as many as 30, including the famed Madame Walker Theatre, entertained the community with the sound of jazz and were the soul of the night.  In addition to local favorites Wes Montgomery and Freddie Hubbard, world renowned jazz musicians, such as Duke Ellington and Miles Davis, toured the venues of the Indianapolis jazz scene.  Although many of the places are gone, the traditions are celebrated with a mural at 332 N. College honoring several of the musicians who played along the Avenue.

Musicians who called Indiana home

The Hoosier State has produced many singers, songwriters, and musical talent.  Early notables include Hoagy Carmichael who wrote and sang many classic favorites, including “Georgia on My Mind,” “Stardust,” and “In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening.”  Cole Porter, whose home is a museum in Peru, composed Broadway musicals Kiss Me Kate and Anything Goes, among others, and his list of songs include “I’ve Got you under my Skin” and “Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye.”  George Hay was the founder of the Grand Ole Opry, where country music traditions still live on today.  Every winter, we hear the song “Jingle Bell Rock,” written by Bobby Helms of Bloomington, who sang and composed mostly country tunes in the 1950s and 1960s.  Famed violinist Joshua Bell called Bloomington home before he toured the world with orchestras and earned the title, “Classical Music Superstar.”  Rockers Axl Rose from Guns n’ Roses and David Lee Roth from Van Halen hail from Indiana, as does R&B artist “Babyface” Kenneth Edmonds; part of I65 in Indianapolis is named in his honor.  Seymour is home to rock and pop favorite John “Cougar” Mellencamp of “Jack and Diane” and “Pink Houses” fame.  Although Gary has been home to Crystal Taliefero, Khazad Doom, and Deniece Williams before they made their names in the music world, it is probably most known as the hometown of The Jackson 5, and especially Michael Jackson.

Gary didn’t only produce musicians by birth, but also musicians by record.  Vivian Carter and James C. Bracken founded an indie R&B, jazz, folk, gospel and urban blues label, Vee-Jay Records, in 1953. It was the first black-owned and female-owned label in the United States.  Vee-Jay recorded artists such as John Lee Hooker, The Dells, Little Richard, and Betty Everett; it was also the first U.S. record company to release music by The Beatles.  Although the company stopped recording in 1966, the historic label often issues re-releases from their extension catalog.

How that song we hear every Memorial Day weekend got its start

“Back Home in Indiana” was written in 1917 by James Hanley and Ballard McDonald.  While “On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away” is the official state song (written in 1897 by Paul Dresser and adopted by the state legislature in 1913), many associate “Back Home in Indiana” as such since it is sung prior to the start of the Indianapolis 500.  It has been a staple of the pre-race ceremonies since 1946; Jim Nabors famously opened every Indy 500 with the song, from 1972-2014.  The original recording was performed by the Dixieland Jazz Band in 1917, and although mostly recorded as a jazz song, it has taken on many alterations over time.

Crown Point on the Radio

Harold Wendel, of Wendel’s Radio & Electric Service started WLBT (“Where Lovers Become Tied” – meant to pay homage to the Marriage Mill of Crown Point) in 1926 as the first local station in Crown Point.  It began as a general broadcasting station of public amusement, entertainment, information, and instruction.  The station, which broadcasted from 115 North Main Street as well as several locations around town, only survived a short time, ending in 1928.

WWJY began in 1972 on Main Street, then moved to Broadway. The original call letters were WFLM (“World’s Finest Listening Music”) but changed to reflect the programming and radio “joy” the station brought its listeners.  It was on the air for over 20 years until it was sold as to a Spanish language station in 1996.

Indiana Playlist

Whether the artist hails from Indiana or waxes poetic about the Hoosier State, enjoy a song celebrating what makes Indiana a place of its own.

Indiana Rocks!: The Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room Hoosier State Playlist

  • Back Home Again in Indiana: written by Ballard McDonald and James F. Hanley (1917) Often known as sung by Jim Nabors at the Indianapolis 500 (other artists include Johnny Mercer, Rosemary Clooney, and many others)
  • Back to Indiana: The Elms (2009)
  • Can’t Get Indiana off my Mind: Hoagy Carmichael (1940)
  • Change the World: Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds (1997)
  • Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye: Cole Porter (1944)
  • Comes Indiana Through the Smoke: Okkervil River (2016)
  • Fast Times at Drop-out High: The Ataris (2001)
  • First Family: Rich Mullins (1989)
  • First Snow in Kokomo: Aretha Franklin (1972)
  • Goin’ Back to Indiana: The Jackson 5 (1971)
  • Henrietta, Indiana: Josh Ritter (2015)
  • Honest to Goodness Indiana: Jon McLaughlin (2014)
  • If It Wasn’t for the Wabash River: Johnny Cash (1977)
  • Indiana: Melissa Etheredge (2010)
  • Indiana: The Samples (1996)
  • Indiana Wants Me: Dean Taylor (1970)
  • Indianapolis: Menudo (1983)
  • Indianapolis: The Bottle Rockets (1997)
  • Indianapolis, Indeed: Sandi Patty (1988)
  • I’ve Got you Under my Skin: Cole Porter(1936)
  • Jump: Van Halen (1984)
  • Lack of Water: The Why Store (1996)
  • Let’s Hear it for the Boys: Deniece Williams (1984)
  • Mary Jane’s Last Dance: Tom Petty (1993)
  • Michigan City, Howdy Do: Johnny Cash (1976)
  • No Rain: Blind Melon (1992)
  • Nothin’ But Cowboy Boots: Blue Country (2004)
  • On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away: written by Paul Dresser (1897)
  • Pizza King: Wussy (2011)
  • Small Town: John Mellencamp (1985)
  • Stardust: Hoagy Carmichael (1927/1929)
  • Sweet Child O’ Mine: Guns N’ Roses (1987)
  • Up in Indiana: Lyle Lovett (2007)

Indiana Singer/Songwriters

  • Adam Lambert, singer, runner-up American Idol
  • Axl Rose, Guns N’Roses bad boy fueled by anti-Indiana sentiments
  • Bill Gaither, gospel singer and songwriter
  • Bill Monroe, father of bluegrass who worked and played in Indiana
  • Bob Flanigan, head of the class for Four Freshmen harmonies
  • Crystal Gayle, ‘Brown Eyes’singer who became a crossover queen
  • Charlie Fuqua, responsible for signature riffs on Ink Spots hits
  • Cole Porter, Broadway genius who crafted enduring classics
  • Dale Lawrence, boundary pusher with Gizmos and Boatmen
  • David Lee Roth, frontman of Van Halen
  • Florence Henderson, singer and actress who often performed at Indy 500 pre-ceremony shows
  • Freddie Hubbard, trumpet great who played with Coltrane and Hancock
  • George Dewey Hay, founder of WSM’s Grand Ole Opry
  • Hoagy Carmichael, composer of iconic ‘Stardust’and ‘Georgia’ tunes
  • Izzy Stradlin, guitarist who performed with many bands and formed Guns N’ Roses
  • Janet Jackson, pop superstar who maintained ‘Control’
  • J. Johnson, the unlimited innovator of jazz trombone
  • John Hiatt, your favorite songwriter’s favorite songwriter
  • John Mellencamp, ‘Small Town’rock star who explores music’s roots
  • Jon McLaughlin, singer and songwriter
  • Joshua Bell, violin sensation and Indiana Living Legend
  • Kenny Aronoff, in-demand drummer with star-studded discography
  • Kenny ‘Babyface’ Edmonds, R&B heavyweight and 11-time Grammy winner
  • Michael Jackson, ‘King of Pop’for joyful dance hits and empathetic ballads
  • Paul Mahern, Zero Boys trailblazer and production wizard
  • The Rev. Josh Peyton, modern guitar hero of timeless country blues
  • Rusty Redenbacher, inventive voice of Mudkids and Birdmen
  • Scrapper Blackwell, collaborative and influential blues master
  • Shannon Hoon, Blind Melon singer and MTV fixture in the ’90s
  • Steve Wariner, one of Music City’s few ‘Certified Guitar Players’
  • The Jackson 5, family musical group with hits ‘ABC’ and others
  • Wes Montgomery, guitarist whose picking transformed jazz
  • Yank Rachell, mandolin ace and patriarch of Indianapolis blues

This is a small sample of the songs about or include the Hoosier State and the singers and songwriters who once called Indiana home.  A quick online search will generate many more lyrics and singer/songwriters involving Indiana.

Indiana Rocks! Sources and Additional Reading List

https://www.indystar.com/story/news/history/retroindy/2017/05/26/retroindy-back-home-again-in-indiana-iconic-but-not-official-state-song/328216001/

https://www.indystar.com/story/entertainment/music/2017/09/25/new-2017-top-25-indiana-musicians-all-time/639839001/

https://visitindiana.com/about-indiana/famous-hoosiers

http://www.jimnabors.com/NationalSportsNews/

https://www.indianapolismonthly.com/news-opinion/the-new-hoosier-playlist-songs-about-indiana/

https://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=18112344

http://www.concordmusicgroup.com/labels/vee-jay-records/

https://www.indystar.com/picture-gallery/news/history/retroindy/2018/04/19/indianapolis-in-the-80s/33988729/

https://www.npr.org/sections/ablogsupreme/2012/03/27/149474702/the-once-thriving-jazz-scene-of-indianapolis

http://www.musicforall.org/blog/stories/celebrating-jazz-history-month-the-jazz-legacy-of-indiana-avenue

http://www.nwitimes.com/entertainment/music/tom-s-annual-top-regional-releases-of/article_2f425907-023e-5d97-8a22-31905985cfdb.html#tracking-source=home-top-story-1

https://www.nuvo.net/music/local_music_profiles/telling-the-indiana-vinyl-story/article_2dd38a52-401a-5556-97bc-e4a72bc25011.html

https://www.indystar.com/story/news/history/retroindy/2017/02/10/retroindy-four-freshmen-began-butler-university/96670724/

https://www.fourfreshmen.com/history

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/09/arts/music/09bern.html

http://www.iupui.edu/~iahi/blisss-homage-to-indiana-avenue-musicians-makes-national-news/

http://www.ozy.com/flashback/how-hippies-put-on-the-worst-music-festival-in-history/80829

http://sloblogs.thetribunenews.com/sidetracked/2009/top-ten-indiana-songs

https://travel.mapquest.com/2016/06/06/top-ten-songs-about-indiana/

https://www.lyrics.com/lyrics/Indiana

50 Years: Martin Luther King, Robert Kennedy, and Indiana

April 4, 2018 marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.  After spending over a week in Memphis helping with the sanitation workers strike, King eloquently spoke of his journey for civil rights for all on April 3rd.  Known as “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop,” it became one of his most important speeches, not just because it was his last, but for the message he proclaimed.  He also almost foretold his future, speaking about his place in the world.

“Well, I don’t know what will happen now; we’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter to with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life — longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. … I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land. “

Just one day later, while preparing to go to a planning meeting for the next sanitation workers protest, King was struck down but a gunshot to the neck on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis.  Those around him tried to stop the bleeding, but their valiant attempts were unsuccessful as he lost his life less than an hour later at the hospital.  We continue to honor the work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. every year with a holiday on his birthday.

While King was engrossed in the situation in Memphis, Robert F. Kennedy was beginning to pick up his campaign for the 1968 presidential primaries.  Having only entered the race a month earlier, Kennedy was behind in polls and campaigning.  President Lyndon Johnson decided not to run for re-election, thus providing the opening Kennedy needed.  He decided to concentrate on the Indiana primary of May 7th, hoping that a full-out campaign in April would result in a second place showing (thinking he would definitely lose to former Indiana Gov. Roger Branigin).  On April 4th, Kennedy spent the earlier part of the day on the campuses of the University of Notre Dame and Ball State University.  He was asked at both locations about his feelings on race relations; he responded that he hoped people could see the best in others and work together.

Upon finishing his second stop of the day, getting ready to board a plane to Indianapolis, Kennedy was informed that King was shot.  Visibly shaken, Kennedy wondered aloud how this could happen again, referring to an assassination of his brother, President John F. Kennedy.  It wasn’t until he landed, that he learned King was dead.  The original plan was a rally to officially open his Indiana campaign headquarters that night.  Although some advised against him keeping his appearance, including his campaign personnel, security, and even his speechwriters, Kennedy felt strongly he needed to go to the rally.  Even one police officer agreed with Kennedy.  Upon learning about King’s assassination while waiting for Kennedy to arrive in Indianapolis, advisor John Bartlow Martin asked a nearby police officer if Kennedy should still attend the rally in a predominantly black neighborhood.  The officer replied, “I sure hope he does.  If he doesn’t, there’ll be hell to pay.”

Kennedy wrote a few notes on an envelope in the car on the way to the rally.  Although a few in the crowd had already learned of King’s death, most had not.  Kennedy arrived and stepped upon the back of a flatbed truck to speak to the crowd.  The excited crowd quickly quieted as Kennedy stepped forward.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I’m only going to talk to you just for a minute or so this evening, because I have some very sad new for all of you.  Could you lower those signs, please?  I have some very sad news for all of you, and, I think, sad news for all of our fellow citizens, and people who love peace all over the world; and that is that Martin Luther King was shot and was killed tonight in Memphis, Tennessee.”

Audience members shouted cries of “No!” and began to cry.  Kennedy paused for the audience to collect and then he went on to reflect on the type of man King was, and the vision he shared for the country.  Kennedy spoke that we all can share in King’s vision and not be tempted by the anger felt on that night.  He spoke about how he, too, felt that temptation when his brother was killed, that he had to make an effort to understand and go beyond those feelings, and that he found solace in his favorite poet, Aeschylus.  After quoting part of a poem, Kennedy spoke again about how we can rise above prejudice and anger.

“So I ask you tonight to return home, to say a prayer for the family of Martin Luther King – yeah, it’s true – but more importantly to say a prayer for our own country, which all of us love – a prayer for understanding and that compassion of which I spoke. … We will have difficult times in the future. … But the vast majority of white people and the vast majority of black people in the country want to live together, want to improve the quality of our life, and want justice for all human beings that abide in our land.”

He reflected once more on the poetry that helped him and then closed with this: “Let us dedicate ourselves to that, and say a prayer for our country and for our people.”

It was a reserved, stunned applause that the audience provided after Kennedy finished and left for his hotel.  That audience heeded his words and sentiment.  While other cities around the country saw distress in various forms, the riots the officer who spoke to Martin feared didn’t transpire in Indianapolis; Kennedy and his thoughtful speech were the main reason.

Upon returning to the hotel, he followed his own counsel, saying a prayer for the family and the country, calling King’s wife to offer his sympathies and to inquire if there was anything he could do for her.  Kennedy helped King’s family prepare for the days ahead, providing transport of King’s body from Memphis to Atlanta, as well as other things they needed during this time.  Kennedy, as well as others, paused campaigning out of respect for King, until after the funeral.  A month later, Kennedy won the Indiana primary.  Many believe that it was his speech on the night of King’s death that led the way toward his victory in Indiana.  Two months later, Kennedy suffered the same fate as King; he was killed by an assassin’s bullet, taken down while fighting for what he believed was right for all citizens of this country.

Less than 30 years later, the location of the Kennedy speech, now known as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Park, had a groundbreaking ceremony to memorialize the site.  Indiana Governor Evan Bayh, President Bill Clinton, Robert Kennedy’s wife Ethel Kennedy, his brother Senator Ted Kennedy, and King’s sons Martin Luther King III and Dexter Scott King, as well as over 5000 attendees, were present for the groundbreaking on May 14th, 1994.  After a nationwide search, Indiana artist Greg Perry was selected and announced a day after the Martin Luther King holiday in 1995 to create the memorial.  A Landmark for Peace opened later that year featuring the silhouettes of King and Kennedy with outstretched hands.  They illustrate the reaching for peace, the attainability of peace that both men sought in their lives’ work.

The memorial was rededicated on April 2, 2005.  It has been a place of reflection and celebration for over 20 years.  Earlier this year, the Indiana congressional delegation, led by Representative Carson and Senators Donnelly and Young, filed legislation to designate the park and the memorial as a National Historic Landmark.  It is their hope that the designation will happen prior to the 50th anniversary this April.  It was Kennedy and King’s hope that peace would be the way of our country and not just a symbol.  A Landmark for Peace is a symbol we can all honor and hold in esteem, just like the men the memorial represent.

Sources and Additional Reading

I’ve been to the Mountaintop Speech

Robert F. Kennedy Speeches: Statement on Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., Indianapolis, Indiana, April 4, 1968

April 4, 1968: How RFK saved Indianapolis

NPR Story (2008) remembering speech

On 49th anniversary of MLK’s assassination, 9 quotes from his final speech: King was assassinated on April 4, 1968, the day after giving his eerily prescient final speech

Boomhower, Ray. Robert F. Kennedy and the 1968 Indiana Primary. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2008.

Boomhower, Ray. “A Voice for Those from Below: John Bartlow Martin, Reporter.” Traces of Indiana and Midwestern History 9 (Spring 1997): 4-13.

Boomhower, Ray. “A Landmark for Peace.” Traces of Indiana and Midwestern History 11 (Winter 1999): 46-48.

Ray E. Boomhower’s Books blog (3/30/2009, 4/1/2011, 4/13/2017)

Nation Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel

The King Center

Kennedy King Memorial Initiative

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Landmark for Peace Memorial

Indiana Historical Bureau: Marker

Indy Park where Robert Kennedy gave famous MLK speech up for national landmark status

Kennedy-King historic honor sought for Indianapolis Park

Midwest Living: Making Peace in Indianapolis

New York Today: If Martin Luther King Had Sneezed

 

Indiana in the Movies

When one thinks of Hollywood and the movies, one doesn’t automatically think of Indiana.  However, Indiana has contributed to all aspects of the film industry.  The Hoosier State has provided writers, directors, actors, and those who work behind the scenes and are often not publicly recognized.  Indiana novelists have written stories, poems, and books that gave Hollywood some of its most loved films.  Movies have been set in Indiana, but not filmed within its borders.  Numerous movies have used the farmlands and towns for their scenery and filmed in the Hoosier State.  Some of your favorite movies and movie stars may involve Indiana and you just didn’t know it.

The settings for Indiana films are as diverse as the state itself.  Hoosiers (1986) represents the state’s love of basketball, but also its defining resilience of character.  Family stories, many that started as novels by Indiana authors, illustrate what it means to have the grit, compassion, and determination that show who Hoosiers are to the rest of the country and world.  Examples include The Magnificent Ambersons by Booth Tarkington, Theodore Dreiser’s Sister Carrie and An American Tragedy, and more recently John Green’s A Fault in Our Stars and Paper Towns.  Lew Wallace wrote the epic Ben Hur which is now regarded as one of our finest films of all time.  Northwest Indiana’s George Ade (The College Widow, 1927) had over 90 of his short stories adapted for film and the stage.  George Barr McCutcheon wrote several adapted stories, including Home in Indiana (1944).  Historical movies show some of the best and worst Indiana has to offer.  Although it may not be the finest moment in Indiana or Crown Point’s past, Public Enemies (2009) was filmed within our borders and our town.

There are several movie stars, and others in the industry, that call Indiana home, either by birthplace or adopted home.  One of the most famous Hoosier movie stars is James Dean, perhaps famous just as much for his death as for his acting.  Steve McQueen, Marjorie Main (Ma Kettle), Carole Lombard, Greg Kinnear, and Kevin Kline are among those who Indiana can claim.  Colleen Moore, who married her second husband at Crown Point’s Marriage Mill, starred in James Whitcomb Riley’s adaptations of poems A Hoosier Romance (1918) and Little Orphant Annie (1918).  Gary’s own Karl Malden served as president of the Academy from 1988-1993.  Two other Hoosiers, George Seaton and Robert Wise, have served in the role since the formation of the institution.  The Academy Awards ceremonies of 1944, 1954, and 1946, were held at Sid Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.  Sid Grauman was a native of Indianapolis.  He was recognized for his contributions to film in 1949, one year before he died.

Hoosier sites and Hoosier hospitality lend itself to the movies.  People like feel good, all-American stories when they go to the movies.  What’s more American than “The Crossroads of America” – Indiana?

Filming Public Enemies, Crown Point, IN, March 2008

Sources and Additional Reading

The 10 Best Movies Set in Indiana

13 Most Notable Movies Set in Indiana

Hoosier Oscars: And the winner is…

Hoosiers in Hollywood. David L. Smith IC 791.4302 SMI

 

National Pie Day – The History of Hoosier Pie

Celebrate National Pie Day on January 23rd by making your own Indiana namesake pie.  The first National Pie Day was observed in 1975, designated as such by Charlie Papazian of Boulder, Colorado, to celebrate his own birthday with his favorite dessert.  In 1986, the American Pie Council began sponsoring the event, as a way to commemorate Crisco™’s 75th anniversary.  National Pie Day is also observed on December 1st, although the origin of the secondary observation date is unknown.  Some even observe Pi Day (3/14) as another day to celebrate this beloved dessert.

The first pies appeared as early as 9500 B.C.  Pies can be either savory or sweet.  Many associate pie as the sweet variety, of which there are numerous different kinds, such as fruit, custard, or tarts.  Indiana has an official state pie, designated as such in 2009, known as Hoosier Pie or Sugar Cream Pie.  After the 2009 designation, Duane Wickersham said the following to The Indianapolis Star “It’s a great honor.  The sugar cream pie is a great pie, and it’s a Hoosier pie.  Every state needs a state pie.”

The sugar cream pie tradition pre-dates Indiana statehood, beginning with the migration to eastern Indiana by the Shake community.  Some say the Amish brought it with them as they migrated to northeast Indiana in the 1830s.  Either way, sugar cream pie falls under the category of “desperation pie.”  A desperation pie varies regionally and seasonally (i.e. availability of ingredients, like fruit), but it means it contains simple ingredients that one would always have on hand at the farm or home.  Most sugar cream pie recipes comprise of sugar, whipping cream or milk, flour, and butter into a pie crust.  There are variations that include nutmeg, vanilla, and cinnamon.  Some include egg, but that is a highly controversial addition as most would say a true sugar cream pie has no egg.  Hoosier Pie is also known as a “finger pie” since you’re supposed to mix the ingredients with your fingers to prevent air in the cream.

The earliest known recipe of sugar cream pie is from the 1976 publication The Hoosier Cookbook edited by Elaine Lumbra.  It includes a recipe submitted by Mrs. Kenneth D. Hahn of Miami County.  She states it is a 160 year old recipe (so approximately c. 1815-1816).  The most famous purveyor of Hoosier Pie is Mrs. Wick’s Pies and Restaurant in Winchester, which is also the Sugar Cream Pie Capital of the world.  In 1944, Duane “Wick” Wickersham created his version of sugar cream pie.  He patented the recipe in July 1962.  Today over 10,000 pies every day are made by Wick’s Pies.

People can travel Indiana in search of their favorite Hoosier Pie.  The Indiana Foodways Alliance created several food tours around the state, including the Hoosier Pie Trail.  There are 21 restaurants on the tour, the closest ones to The Region are in Peru, Middlebury, and Shipshewana.  More celebrated pies can be found at Nick’s Kitchen in Huntington, Storie’s Restaurant in Greensburg, and of course, the aforementioned Mrs. Wick’s Pies and Restaurant in Winchester.

This January 23rd enjoy your favorite pie or even try something new.  Make sugar cream pie with one of the recipes on display, or if your family has a recipe, use that.  Celebrate #NationalPieDay the Indiana way with Hoosier Pie!

Sources and Additional Reading

Hoosier Pie: A traditional Hoosier Pie is a sugar cream pie.  There are several recipe versions that exist.

www.nationaldaycalendar.com

Sugar Cream: Hoosier Pie Recipe and History

Sugar Cream Pie: A Hoosier Tradition. Barbara Brosher

Indiana Historical Society Blog: Desperate for Pie

Indiana Foodways Alliance: Hoosier Pie Trail

Visit Indiana – Happy Eating on the Hoosier Pie Trail

Wicks Pies

American Pie Council

Café Indiana: A Guide to Indiana’s Down-Home Cafes and Café Indiana Cookbook. Joanne Raetz Stuttgen IC 647.9577 SUT and ANF 641.5977 SUT (CPCL Catalog)

 

Honoring your Veteran Ancestors: Researching Veterans and Genealogy

One sees the flag waving majestically in the air and gets a sense of pride.  It can lead one to wonder if there is a more personal connection through military service.  One can honor veteran ancestors by learning more about the service they did, when and where their contributions were made.

Military Genealogy

One often hears of ancestors serving in a battle or war and longs to learn more about the role they played.  There are numerous resources and ways to acquire that information.  Start with what is known – when did he/she live and how could they have contributed to the military.  Not all of those who served in the military served in battle or during a war.  Non-military records also provide clues, such as census records when there is a question about military pension.  Newspapers and obituaries are also great resources to discover information about military service.  General genealogy search websites, such as Ancestry, fold3, and the National Archives, as well as websites that deal with a specific war, are excellent places to start after you’ve gathered all you can from your family records.

Local Memorials

The Lake County Veterans Memorial Parkway serves to commemorate the wars our country has fought, and the honor those who served from Lake County.  One can travel along IN 231 from county line to county line and view several monuments.  Not all wars are memorialized at this time, but the plan is to represent each one chronologically from west to east, starting with the Revolutionary War.  Currently, the Korean War and the Vietnam War have memorials along the parkway trail.  Crown Point is also home to a World War II memorial that includes a tank on North Main Street.  The tank serves to protect Crown Point from invasion.  In addition, there are numerous monuments throughout the Northwest Indiana region.

Whether one has a veteran ancestor or not, there are numerous ways to honor those who served in the military.  Visit a memorial, learn more about a particular war or excursion, learn more about a name you saw on the monument, visit the local cemetery and observe the headstones with military markings; show honor by sharing their story.

Sources and Additional Reading

National Archives

fold3

National World War Two Museum

Golden Arrow Military Research

https://www.americanancestors.org/education/learning-resources/read/world-war-research

http://www.aarp.org/relationships/genealogy/info-04-2011/research-civil-war-ancestry.html

Family Tree Magazine help

Researching Through Military Records

6 Military Records for Genealogy you Might Not Know About

WWII Genealogy

Veterans Memorial Parkway Commission Facebook

 

Obituary Index: Improved and Updated!

The Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room is happy to say that the Crown Point Obituary Index has been updated and improved.  The Obituary Index consists of the obituaries and death notices in the weekly newspaper of Crown Point.  Through the hard work and dedication of the Reference staff, the index has been updated to include more years and more accurate information.  The search engine itself has been improved to make searching easier and more accurate as well.  There are still some years yet to be indexed, but the Indiana Room is working to complete those lists soon.  For now, researchers can search the index for the following years: 1857-1933, 1940-2016.  You can find the Obituary Index on the Crown Point Community Library website through the Indiana Room page https://crownpointlibrary.org/research/indianaroom/ or the Database page https://crownpointlibrary.org/database-list/.  If you conduct a search and are interested in viewing the obituary, please contact the Indiana Room genealogy@crownpointlibrary.org or 219-306-4593.

Please see the following statement about the Obituary Index.  It can be found on the index search page.

The Crown Point Community Library maintains a searchable index from the obituaries reported in the Crown Point Register, Crown Point Star, and The Lake County Star newspapers.  The index is available online http://engagedpatrons.org/database/cpplobits/ or in the Indiana Room.

The Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room has transcribed the Crown Point, Indiana Register and Star Newspapers: Death Index August 1857 to December 1930 and it is now available on the Crown Point Community Library website as part of the Crown Point Obituary Index.  Items are copied as initially entered by Marlene (Heald) VanEck unless there is a page number.  The Lake County Star/newspapers did not have official page numbers until 1926; prior to that time, the dates provided are as counted from the microfilm.  Please note that the date of the obituary in the newspaper does not necessarily reflect the actual date of death; many times the obituary only refers the death of the person without stating the date or day of the week.  Especially in the early newspapers, there was no formal obituary column and the announcements were randomly placed within the paper.  There may be errors from the original document as not all obituaries were verified.  Those that were verified have been corrected to reflect the entry in the newspaper.  As with a lot of genealogy research, there are misspellings of both first and last names.  Spellings are recorded in the database as they appear in the newspaper.  If you are not successful completing a search by entering the name, perhaps a search by letter will yield better results.  It is the advice of the Indiana Room to check alternate spellings, for both first and last names, when conducting genealogy research- not only among the Crown Point Obituary Index but all databases one utilizes.

The Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room has been very fortunate to provide the Crown Point and genealogy community with the obituary index for The Lake County Star newspaper.  Unfortunately, the newspaper no longer publishes obituaries on a regular basis.  Recognizing that the community relies on this service we will still be updating the database annually; however, please realize that if your family member died after 2015, the chances of The Lake County Star printing an obituary is very slim.

 

Haunted Crown Point

Have you ever walked through an old house and thought you heard or saw something that wasn’t or shouldn’t be there?  Folk legends and ghost stories seem to go hand in hand with older buildings and homes, and Crown Point is no exception.  In addition to structures, cemeteries are often a place of paranormal intrigue.  One could travel the streets of Crown Point and Northwest Indiana and pass many places where someone has a ghost story to tell.

Some of Crown Point’s most recognizable places have a story.  The Courthouse on the Square has been known to have a board creak or a whisper in the halls by former occupants of the courthouse, or perhaps a disgruntled offender.  Furniture has been known to move or appear as if being dragged around.  There is even a mysterious lady that roams the building; some say she’s wearing a white gown while others claim she’s in all black.  Either way, the Grand Old Lady of Lake County has experienced some paranormal activity.

The Sheriff’s House and Old Lake County Jail has had many a hardened criminal within its walls.  Some seem to have stuck around long past the jail’s closing.  Voices are often heard in the cells and in the walkways.  Apparitions have been seen as well; they could be that of an inmate or even a guard.  Whether it’s John Dillinger or someone else, the jail is known as a haunted space.

The old library and Carnegie Center on South Main Street had too many instances to ignore, that a Ghost Hunter team conducted an investigation in 2009.  The team did experience several paranormal situations, including books falling off shelves and whispering in several areas of the stacks and the library building.  The old Indiana Room gave one a feeling of being watched while researching.  Perhaps it’s a former librarian making certain you handled the books appropriately.  Take a look at the photograph in the Indiana Room window display of the former reading area in the Carnegie Library.  What do you see?

Other stories from around Crown Point include current home owners hearing former residents walking in the rooms.  They may hear speaking or whispers in certain areas of the home.  Or even tales of picture frames being “adjusted” on the walls and furniture being rearranged.

The Gypsies Cemetery, South East Grove Cemetery, in south Crown Point is the resting place of several people cast out of Crown Point who perished one harsh winter from exposure and flu.  Those who lived left behind both their dead and a curse.  One can see firelight that may not be there or hear the moanings of those who remained.  There are claims of other cemeteries or former cemeteries being haunted by spirits as well.

Maybe that feeling wasn’t “just in your head.”  Perhaps you were being greeted, or haunted, or visited by someone who was present before you.  Whether you’re a believer, a skeptic, or just have an interest in the stories that go with the places that surround us, you can enjoy the haunted tales of Crown Point.  Do you dare to explore the places more?

Further Reading

Haunted Crown Point, Indiana Judith Tometczak

 

Build a Better City

When Solon Robinson arrived at a rolling hill on October 31, 1834, all he and his companions saw were trees and prairies as far as the eye could see.  He soon built his log cabin, and then other buildings were built where what was to become King’s Point and then Crown Point.  A post office and government building were constructed as well as other structures around the highest point.  That became the center of town, to be known as The Square.  Although the original buildings no longer exist, many older buildings still grace our city’s streets.

You’ll notice several design styles throughout Crown Point; often the structure reflects the national design style of the time it was built.  Most prominent is our “Grand Old Lady,” the Lake County Courthouse at the center of The Square.  Built in 3 stages in both Romanesque and Georgian styles, the courthouse was originally built in 1878.  It expanded in 1908 with the construction of two 2.5 story additions, and then again into what we know today in 1928 with the construction of two additional 1.5 story additions.  The Lake County Courthouse was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.

The Queen Anne style was very popular during the Victorian Era and Crown Point has several outstanding examples, including the Holley House on the corner of South and East Streets and the Grant Root House and the Crawford-Winslow House, both on the west-side of the intersection of Main and South Streets.  There are two excellent examples of the Tudor Revival style in The Whitaker House on South Main Street and the Maack House on South Court Street.

The broader Colonial style has two major design types.  The Allman House (corner of East and Clark Streets) and the Root House (southeast corner of South and Court Streets) are fine examples of the Dutch Colonial style.  The Colonial Revival style is illustrated by the Letz House on South Court Street and the old Community Center just north of The Square, which was originally built by the American Legion in the late 1920s, and then turned the building over to the School City.  The School City used the facility as a gymnasium and social hall for the high school, as well as a recreation center and meeting place for the general community.

Crown Point’s oldest home, built in 1847, is an example of Greek Revival, the Wellington Clark house.  The Clark Homestead was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2001.  The Italianate style is seen in the Assessor’s Building, which is also known as the Hamacher House or the Marble House. Both are located just south of The Square on Court Street.  The Hart House on South Main Street, as referred to as the Mayor’s Mansion, is the city’s best offering of the Free Classic style.

The only remaining example in Northwest Indiana of the Second Empire style is also its most famous, The Old Sheriff’s House on Main Street.  It is probably most famous for the escape of John Dillinger in 1934.  The Old Sheriff’s House and Jail served Crown Point and Lake County from 1882-1974, and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.

The buildings and homes of Crown Point are as diverse as its history.  Notice the architecture next time you walk or drive around the city.  The details tell the story of how we became Crown Point.

 

Wandering with those Before Us: The Cemeteries of Center and Winfield Townships

Center and Winfield Townships have several historical cemeteries that reflect the past – the growth of the area and those who were here before us.  Although there are some cemeteries that are no longer around or accessible to the public, one can still learn about the communities and how they were built.  By exploring the cemeteries, we see family names of those who influenced the areas.  We see what the communities viewed as important in the monuments.  We learn about who we are and where we came from by remembering and reflecting on the people who called this place home.

Wander around Center and Winfield Townships, explore the cemeteries and imagine what the communities were like in the past, how and by whom they were built into where we live today.  Please be respectful of the sacred grounds when you visit.

Center Township

Maplewood Historic and Maplewood Memorial Cemetery: Although the cemeteries appear as one, there are actually two cemeteries under the Maplewood name.  Each has a main entrance; however, you don’t have to leave one to enter the other, as there are roads throughout the cemetery connecting the two.  Maplewood Historic Cemetery opened in 1872 and is maintained by the city.  Its main entrance is along Wells Street.  There are several monuments in this area, including the Heroes Memorial and Solon Robinson Memorial, as well as several families and names of significance in Crown Point.  Maplewood Memorial Cemetery’s main entrance is 555 South Indiana Avenue.  It was established in 1928 and is a privately operated cemetery.  There are many family names in this area as well as the World War I memorial, The Doughboy.  Family names you will find in Maplewood include Allman, Dillabaugh, Letz, Maack, Minas, Parry, Pettibone, Root, Wagonblast, and Wheeler.

Solon Robison Memorial

The Doughboy

Civil War – Colonel John Wheeler

Veteran’s Memorial Parkway

Higgins/Youche Mausoleum

St. Mary’s Cemetery: Opened in 1867, soon after the founding of St. Mary Church, the cemetery is a mission of the church and you will find many family names of significance for both St. Mary’s and Crown Point.  It is located at 800 West South Street.  There is a large crucifix in the center of the cemetery that was donated by businessman Charles Huber and serves as the resting place for several pastors.  Family names you can locate in St. Mary’s include Geisen (the family also maintains the records and the grounds), Hack, Hillbrich, Mikuta, Rettig, Schmal, and Wirtz.

West Point Cemetery: Not a cemetery in a traditional sense, West Point Cemetery only has 1 marker with the names of those buried within the grounds.  Located at the corner of 131st Avenue and Fairbanks Street in Cedar Lake, the marker includes Obadiah Taylor, the only Revolutionary War veteran in Lake County, IN, as well as members of his family and others.

Goff Family Cemetery (private) is located along Cedar Lake Road on personal property.

Reichers/Zieseniss Cemetery (private) is located on W. 145th Avenue on private property.  It is the former site of the old Evangelical and Reformed Church.

Hansen/Heisterberg Family Cemetery is located just north of St. John’s United Church of Christ on Indiana Avenue and is not accessible to the public.

John Luther’s Wood or Lutherswood Cemetery, Old Crown Point Cemetery, and Old Burying Ground were all historical cemeteries located to the west of the current town square in several places.  All remains were moved to Maplewood Cemetery.

Winfield Township

Deer Creek Cemetery: Located on Grand Boulevard, just north of 109th Street, Deer Creek Cemetery dates to just after Winfield Township was formed.  The cemetery contains the resting places for several of the area’s earliest settlers.  Family names located within the cemetery include Burge, Patton, Weiler, and Wise.

Hickory Point Cemetery was a historical cemetery located along Lake and Porter County border northeast of Leroy.  The remains were moved to Salem Methodist Church Cemetery in Porter County, near Hebron.

Further Reading

Cemetery Records of Lake County Francis McBride (Volume 2 contains Center Township and Volume 3 contains Winfield Township). IN Room 929.5 CEM

Disciples on the Journey since 1865: Celebrating 150 Years: St. Mary Church, Crown Point, Indiana St. Mary Church. IN Room 282.783 STM

Crown Point History Pamphlet File. IN Room Pamphlet File

Find A Grave. www.findagrave.com

National Photography Month

Photography invites both the photographer and the viewer into another world – one that challenges the imagination and invokes the deepest of memories.  Photographs allow one to see the past or capture the present.  One can travel to another location just by looking at the photograph.  One can feel emotions from the images or see things in a different way from a photograph.  One can interpret a picture as the photographer intended or discover something new.

Developed in the early 1800s, by various means, photographers and photographs have since been telling the stories of our communities, land, and people in the new form.  What started as fuzzy black and white images that required the subject to remain still for 30 minutes or more, evolved into color photography in the 1940s, allowing the photographer to truly capture the essence of the image.  Today the film in use from 1888 is not the norm; digital images are captured by home and professional photographers alike.   One can even snap a quick picture with a phone.

Visit the places that make Indiana our unique state through the eyes and photographs of others.  Experience the past through the photographs of Post-Tribune and Yank News World War II photographer John Bushemi, who Yank correspondent Merle Miller once commented that Bushemi’s specialty was “photography from a rifle’s length vantage point.”  Feel the tension on the steps of Central High School in Little Rock, AR, in 1957, as you view the photographs by Indiana University professor, Will (Ira) Counts.  Hoosiers have been capturing this land and its people, as well as making vast contributions to world of photography, since the beginning of this art form.

What do you see when you look in the lens?

Sources and Additional Reading

Indiana Historical Society: Photo Studio and Photographer Collections

Early Indianapolis and Indiana Photography: HistoricIndianapolis.com

What These 20 Indiana Photographers Captured will blow you away

Free Indiana Photos from Midwest Living – Decorate Your Desktop with our Indiana Photos

Imaging Professionals of Indiana

The Photographers Guild

Indiana News Photographers Association

Indianapolis Professional Photographers Guild

Midwest Photographers Project – Museum of Contemporary Photography

8 Crucial Innovations in the Invention of Photography – History.com

25 Famous Photographers in History – Digital Photo Mentor

http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=470#

National Poetry Month: Indiana

Celebrating its 21st year, National Poetry Month seeks to highlight the influence of poetry on our culture and its impact on literature.  Indiana officially created the role of Indiana Poet Laureate in 2005; however, the position has been well-established, yet unofficial, since 1929.  Shari Wagner is the current poet laureate, taking the position in 2016.  The previous poet laureate, George Kalamaras, is a Cedar Lake native and often wrote about this area.

Poetry has been an influential art form in Indiana for a long time.  The Indianapolis Poetry Club was formed in 1921.  In 1927, at the home of Meredith Nicholson, the city poetry club expanded into the Indiana Poetry Society.  The society changed its name several times and is currently known as the Poetry Society of Indiana.  The Indiana state poem “Indiana,” by Arthur Franklin Mapes, was adopted by the 1963 General Assembly.  Mapes was designated state poet laureate in 1977.  To celebrate the bicentennial year, poet April Pulley Sayre, wrote “The Indiana Chant,” commemorating the people, places, and things that represent Indiana.

Other Indiana poets include former poet laureate Norbert Krapf, William Buckley, local poets Charles Swisher and T.H. Ball, Meredith Nicholson, Jessamyn West, Jared Carter, Rebecca Lard, and “The Hoosier Poet” James Whitcomb Riley.  Even our state nickname is thought to have roots in the poem “The Hoosier’s Nest” by John Finley, furthering the influence of poetry on the story and the culture of Indiana.

Sources and Additional Reading

National Poetry Month

Indiana Humanities

Indiana Poetry Society Archives at Purdue University

Indiana Poet Laureate

http://www.wfyi.org/news/articles/indianas-new-poet-laureate-inspired-by-nature

Indianapolis Monthly Literary Indiana: Poets

http://www.lcplin.org/About/History/bicentennial-poetry.html

https://www.iue.edu/blogs/library/2016/08/22/poetry-demystified/

http://www.heraldbulletin.com/community/best-indiana-poetry-books-named/article_a009452b-e468-59bd-9890-31730c3aae7b.html

Celebrating Women’s History Month: Indiana Women’s Roles in History

March is Women’s History Month, where we celebrate the contributions women have made to shape our local, state, regional, national, and international communities.  Their contributions may be in government, businesses, schools, science, or numerous other aspects of our society.  Women from Indiana have used their minds and their influence to better our state and our lives.

Eventually working alongside other suffragettes Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, May Wright Sewall initially championed women’s rights in Indianapolis.

Gene Stratton-Porter was a naturalist and author who often wrote about her beloved Limberlost Cabin home and the community surrounding it.

Albion Fellows Bacon was instrumental in passing affordable, sanitary housing for the poor after her children got sick with scarlet fever.  She learned that living conditions affected one’s health and she fought for housing and health for communities.

Education about the home and the science behind it came to Purdue University, and then by extension to the rest of Indiana, thanks to Mary Matthews and Lella Gaddis.  They created and expanded the School of Home Economics, which was affiliated with the School of Agriculture, in 1913.

One of America’s first multi-millionaires was Madam C.J. Walker, who founded and ran a company making hair and beauty products especially for the black community.  She started the company in Indianapolis.

Crown Point has its own famous woman in Lillian Holley.  After her husband passed away, she was sheriff of Lake County when John Dillinger escaped from the jail.  But that it not her lasting legacy in this community- she lived to 103 years and was an active supporter of preserving Crown Point history and buildings, including “The Grand Ole Lady” Courthouse.

Sources and Further Reading

Indiana Commission for Women

Indiana Women’s History Trail

Conner Prairie: Lives of Women

Indiana Woman Magazine Archives 

Susan Bulkeley Butler Women’s Archives – Women in Purdue History at Purdue University

Guide to Women’s History Materials at Indiana Historical Society

Places Where Women Made History

 

Indiana Room Display Endorsed as Bicentennial Legacy Project

ibc_legacy_project_sealThe Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room and Reference Department has been officially endorsed by the Indiana Bicentennial Commission as a Legacy Project for it’s display It’s Indiana’s Bicentennial! 200 Fun Facts about Crown Point to Celebrate.  The display honoring the 200th birthday of the state of Indiana features fun facts about Crown Point.  It will be exhibited in the lobby of the Crown Point Community Library throughout November, December, and January. The display has been generously underwritten by the Friends of the Library.

Visit the Indiana Bicentennial Commission website to learn more about the Legacy Project as well as other Bicentennial celebrations around the state.

Indiana Bicentennial Commission

Bicentennial Legacy Projects 

 

Banned Books Week: September 25- October 1, 2016

Indiana Authors who have been challenged or banned, making the lists of top challenged books.  This does not include every Indiana author challenged.

Theodore Dreiser

John Green

Margaret Peterson Haddix

Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Booth Tarkington

Kurt Vonnegut

Dan Wakefield

There were 275 challenges recorded in 2015 by the American Library Association’s (ALA) Office for Intellectual Freedom.  John Green was #1 on the list of Top Ten Challenges throughout the country for his book Looking for Alaska.  Books are challenged or banned for any number of reasons and can even vary by challenge; what one finds objectionable, another may see differently.  This is not a new phenomenon; Mark Twain was banned while he was still living; his works are still challenged.  Frequently challenged Indiana native Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse Five was not only banned in North Dakota in 1973, the book was ordered by the high school board to be collected and burned in the school’s incinerator.  One might be surprised by the books that are challenged, from classics one may have read as a child or in high school such as Lassie and Of Mice and Men to popular books and series of today, from adult focused books to nonfiction books to children’s books and fairy tales.  Even the dictionary has been challenged – in our state.

Sources and Additional Reading

Banned Books Week – American Library Association

Top Ten Frequently Challenged Books of 2015

Frequently Challenged Classic Books

People attempt to ban this book set in Alabama more than any other book in the country (John Green’s Looking for Alaska)

Best quotes on banning and censoring books: The Guardian

Famous Authors’ Funniest Responses to Their Books Being Banned

See the Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room for titles available in the library also.

Kurt Vonnegut on censorship of his books (and in general):

“All these people talk so eloquently about getting back to good old-fashioned values. Well, as an old poop I can remember back to when we had those old-fashioned values, and I say let’s get back to the good old-fashioned First Amendment of the good old-fashioned Constitution of the United States — and to hell with the censors! Give me knowledge or give me death!”

 

On your Mark, Get Set, Hoosier Sports

Summer Reading and the Indiana Room @ Crown Point Community Library

When you think of sports, do you think of famous athletes? Or sports teams? Or sports venues? Do you think of Indiana?

Indiana has greatly contributed to the sports landscape with Hoosier athletes, teams, and venues.

In basketball, Indiana is synonymous with the who, what and where of that sport.  Larry Bird, Oscar Robertson, Steve Alford, John Wooden, and Bob Knight are just a few of the names that come to mind when one mentions basketball.  James Naismith may have created the game in Massachusetts, but Hoosiers made basketball their own and grew the game into what we love to watch and play today.  Even if you weren’t alive at the time, Indiana folklore is alive with 1954’s high school championship game when Milan High School beat powerhouse Muncie Central at Butler University’s landmark Hinkle Fieldhouse, then known as Butler Fieldhouse.  Professionally, Indianapolis hosts the National Basketball League Pacers and the Women’s NBA Fever.  New Castle is the home to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame, which celebrates all levels of basketball.

Nothing screams football tradition more than the Notre Dame Fightin’ Irish.  People all over the country pledge their undying loyalty to the men who play every Saturday in South Bend.  Knute Rockne, Joe Montana, and “Rudy” Daniel Ruettinger are names associated with Notre Dame football.  The Colts have been playing in Indianapolis since 1984 and quarterback Peyton Manning has made the city his home as Hoosiers have adopted him as one of their own, too. The College Football Hall of Fame is in South Bend, Indiana, too.

The Nat banner_1500

It may not be the first thing you think of when you think of Indiana, but Hoosiers love their competitive swimming.  Mark Spitz swam for Indiana University.  12,000 young athletes compete on over 110 swim teams throughout the state, making it one of the largest USA Swimming organizations in the country.   “The Nat” in Indianapolis has been holding Olympic Trials for Diving and Swimming since 1984, two years after the venue opened.  It did so most famously in 2000, when Michael Phelps (arguably the most famous swimmer in the world) first qualified for the Olympic Games in Sydney.  He has said “It’s always been a great pool for me to swim in.”

The Indianapolis Speedway has annually hosted the Indy 500 automobile race since 1911.  2016 is the 100th running of the famed race that draws international attention from both racers and fans.

speedway-logo

Our collegiate teams have passionate fans that follow them everywhere to show their pride.  In return, our beloved Hoosiers, Boilermakers, Cardinals, and Bulldogs provide us with exciting players, competition, and championships.  Indiana University and Purdue University football teams meet each year to compete for the Old Oaken Bucket Trophy.  The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has its headquarters in Indianapolis since 2000 as well as the NCAA Hall of Champions.

High school sports are more popular than ever in Indiana, even in our hometown.  Crown Point comes out on Friday nights to watch our Bulldogs on the gridiron, as well as throughout the year to support the 20 IHSSA (Indiana High School Athletics Association) associated sports.  CPHS has won 6 state championships: Girls Basketball 1984 and 1985, Boys Soccer 2011 and 2013, Boys Tennis 1971, and Wrestling 2009.

IHSAA-logo-112614.vadapt.664.high.48

Celebrate sports and recreation by exploring the many state and local parks, trails, and beaches of this state.  The National Park System is 100 years old this year.

Take a moment to exercise not only your body, but your mind, with all the sports and sports related activities Indiana has to offer.

Sources and Additional Reading

Sports in Indiana

History of our Hysteria: How Indiana Fell in Love with Basketball 

Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum

Indiana Swimming

The IUPUI Natatorium History

IHSSA History

See the Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room for titles available in the library also.

 

Celebrating the Indy 500? Thank the Cobe Cup

2016 is the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 (also known as: The 500, The 500-Mile Race, Indianapolis 500-Mile Race, Indy 500, or International 500-Mile Sweepstakes Race {sweepstakes dropped in 1981}).  Although the Indy 500 first ran in 1911, it paused for several years during World War II.  The Greatest Spectacle in Racing may currently run in Indianapolis, but it has its beginnings 134 miles to the north in Crown Point.

Conceived by Ira Cobe, president of the Chicago Automobile Club, the race was intended to bring car racing to the west and create a new race to rival the Vanderbilt Cup in the east.  Cobe chose Northwest Indiana for its vicinity to Chicago and its hospitable landscape.  He planned the event for June 1909, even underwriting the road preparation and telegraph stations that needed to be installed along the route.

The course was 23.27 miles per lap which included Crown Point, Cedar Lake, and Lowell.  Affectionately known as “The Nine Mile,” Indiana Avenue was nicknamed so after the Cobe race since it was the Nine Mile Stretch of track from Lowell to Crown Point.  The roads were smoothed, some new sections built, and parts were coated in macadam at the cost of $21,000.00, starting at the beginning of May 1909.  Time was of the essence since there would be a $500/day delay fee if the road was not completed for the first day of the race.

newpaper with route cropped1993 newspaper with route cropped

Source: A Special Souvenir Edition of you Post-Tribune: Share in the Celebration: A Salute to One Hundred-Fifty Years of Progress in Crown Point (June 21, 1984, Page 5) and The Lake County Star newspaper microfilm collection

May is the first mention of the impending race in The Lake County Star newspaper.  There were sporadic articles each week about the progress of the road and other necessary construction, the potential visitors to the area, and the racers themselves.

The main grandstand was built along IN 55 about 1.25 miles south of the turn onto what is now Joliet Ave.  It served as the start and end point of the race.  Crown Point lumberman, D.A. Root was awarded the contract to supply the lumber and build the stands as well as the walking bridge over the course.  The Grandstands were located on the east side of the street and the parking was provided on the west.

newpaper with grandstand cropped

Source: The Lake County Star newspaper microfilm collection

IMG_ORIG_20160311_0004_NEW

Photograph Courtesy of The Lake County Historical Museum

Although financial backers and elite racing fans from around the country sat in the stands, most people lined the streets along the course rather than pay $10 for parking and then $5/person for a seat in the grandstand.  Illinois National Guardsmen also lined the course- to protect both spectators and racers.  There was a secondary stand on Main Street at the Square that only had 1 customer and a brass band.

street scene 1street scene 2

Photographs Courtesy of The Lake County Historical Museum

The Western Stock Chassis Championship was planned as a 2 day open road race.  The Indiana Trophy race was only a 10 lap race on the same course for smaller engines, held the first day.  Joe Matson was victorious on June 18th, beating 17 other drivers.  He finished the race in 4 hours 31 minutes and 21 seconds in a Chalmers-Detroit with an average speed of 51 mph.  The Cobe Cup was awarded on June 19, 1909, following the 395 mile race (17 laps) for “bigger engines.”  Driving a Buick, Louis Chevrolet won the staggered start race that included 12 cars.  Chevrolet was victorious not by order of finish, but by his time.  With the average speed of 49 mph, he won in 8 hours 1 minute and 39 seconds, beating the first to cross the finish line by 65 seconds.

lchevrolet

Photo source: The Times newspaper

Hoping to be a commercial success and annual event, investors actually lost money.  Expectations were high for filling the newly built grandstand with spectators.  There were estimates for up to 100,000 fans before the race, with actual numbers around 35,000.  Since those fans chose to picnic roadside along the course, it cost backers an estimated $25,000.  The Cobe Cup is considered a success only from a racing point of view.  Assessment included, “Not a racer was spilled and not a car turned turtle.  The pilots went around the curves discreetly instead of precipitately.”  Perhaps this due to the fact that the drivers were permitted to practice the course that included a dangerous, and infamous, S-Curve halfway between Crown Point and Cedar Lake starting June 10th, from 2-4pm, per the public notice on the front page of the June 4, 1909, edition of The Lake County Star.  The S-Curve has since been straightened slightly, no longer the danger it once was.

The Cobe Cup Trophy was presented to Chevrolet on the steps of the Courthouse.  The 5’4” trophy no longer exists, rumored to have been melted down for scrap metal after Chevrolet’s death.

At the time, there was little love lost about the event.  The Lake County Star front page headline on the edition following the race read “THE GREAT RACES ARE OVER. The Crowds Have Dispersed.  Thank the Lord.” along with, “the best part is no one was killed or severely injured and plenty of vendors frosted.”  The full column article mostly recalled the hassle of the race rather than the crowds and notoriety it brought to the area.  Later in the edition, an article headlined “Threaten to Come Again” quoted Cobe as saying “Well, from the way I size up the situation now, I believe that we can repeat our races next year: in fact, I think I can safely say that the second running of the Cobe Cup will be in 1910.  As to our plans it would be hard to say right now, but we are going ahead with our preparations just the same and are going to begin early next time.”

Subsequent races were cancelled and moved to the Indianapolis Speedway, where it was later decided to only hold one annual race starting in 1911- The Indianapolis International Sweepstakes.

song cover

Photo source: IU Collections: INHarmony

Nostalgia has taken over, as it often does.  Lyricist Victor H. Smalley and composer Bernard Adler retold the story of the Cobe Cup race with their song, “I Love My Horse and Wagon, But Oh! You Buick Car.”  Since 1984, there have been annual reenactments of the Cobe Cup- a general cruise along the course with a police escort of cars pre-dating 1975.  More recently, newer cars have been allowed to participate if qualified within the rules.  It was cancelled in 2013 due to lack of local support, but returned in 2014.  In 2015, 90 participated in the cruise, which commenced at the Lake County Fairgrounds and ended there with a celebration and car show.  Want to participate this year?  The 2016 Cobe Cup Cruise will be held at the Lake County Fairgrounds on June 18th.

As you watch the Indy 500 this Memorial Day, say a little thank you to Crown Point- it created the path to The Brickyard.

Sources and Additional Reading

Special thanks to the Lake County Historical Museum for several photographs

The Lake County Star newspaper microfilm, Crown Point Community Library

Early Years of Chicago Area Racing- The Turn of the Century and Beyond by Stan Kalwasinski

The Cobe Trophy Race of 1909: Louis Chevrolet’s big day The Times May 23, 2013

Cobe Cup Race from Cruise IN

The Hub Pages: Travel: Crown Point

Song Image and Lyrics from IU Collections: INHarmony

Regional Streeters, Indiana

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

NY Tribune 06201909

Cobe Cup Information from Lowell Public Library

 

*****For the past 8 months (note: this was originally posted May 2016), the Indiana Room had a volunteer intern assisting with the collection.  Using a pen name, our intern wrote a blog entry about a part of her experience and something she learned while with the Indiana Room.  We hope you enjoy reading this as much as she enjoyed researching and writing it.

George Ade: Worthy Enough to not be Forgotten

By Penny Lane

Young Ade Mature Ade

Do you know who George Ade is? It’s okay if you don’t, I didn’t know him until a few months ago. In a way, though, it’s rather sad. How did an Indiana man, writer of successful plays on Broadway, host of parties entertaining guests including U.S presidents William Harding and William Taft, and author of stories praised by Mark Twain himself, be forgotten?

George Ade was born on February 6th, 1866, in Kentland, Indiana. If you’re not familiar with Kentland, it’s not as far as you might think. In fact, George and his siblings saw the 1871 Chicago Fire from where they were. George was described as a tall, lanky man who had a striking resemblance to Woodrow Wilson, and from early on, he had a knack for learning. His teacher was so impressed with his essay, “A Basket of Potatoes”, they had it published in the local newspaper when George was only fifteen. “Life is but a basket of potatoes,” George had written, “Keep away from the rotten potatoes and you will get to the top.” Little did he know, George would use this writing style years later when he published his famous, “Fables in Slang” stories.

In 1883, when George was seventeen, he decided to attend Purdue in Lafayette, a college which had opened nine years earlier. George decided to study science, and, unsurprisingly, soared in areas of composition and literature, so much so, he became president of the Irving Literary Society.

George Ade sketch

 

 

 

 

 

 

“George has just heard the dinner bell at the boarding hall”

Besides being president of the Literary Society, George also became president of his fraternity, where he met his greatest comrade, John T. McCutcheon. John was an illustrator, and, along with his older brother, formed a strong friendship with George, which they would keep for many years. George and John’s older brother loved seeing shows at the Lafayette Opera House. George always had an adoration for the world of theater, proven by the plays he would later write.

McCutheon          John McCutcheon

          McCutcheon illustration from George Ade’s “Circus Day”John McCutcheon art 2

After graduating in 1887, George tried advertising for Cascarets, a laxative brand which he’d named. After reporting for two years, George joined his friend, John, in Chicago to work for the Chicago News, which would later be known as the Record. George’s column, combined with John’s illustrations, “All Road Leads to the Fair” had gained massive popularity at the Columbian Exposition, the 1893 World Fair. The popularity of the column led George to have one of his own, “Stories of the Streets and of the Town.” In it, George didn’t cover anything extravagant, or sophisticated, instead, he wrote about the features of everyday life. Living in Chicago, George had access to foreign immigrants (German, Scandinavian, and Greek to name a few), policeman, shop girls, the poor, and many more characters. George published these columns to eager readers until a man named Herbert Stone wanted to officially publish his work. In 1899, George released “Fables in Slang”.

Ironically, “Fables in Slang” was the exact book that gave my attention to George Ade. One day, while browsing in the Indiana Room of the Crown Point Library, I came across the exact same book. I was greatly amused. “Fables in Slang”? Naturally, I knew what fables were, they were short stories that always gave a moral or a life lesson. The fact that someone had written exactly that, only, in slang, interested me. What shocked me even more was the copyright of the book: 1899. “So not only is it in slang, but late 1800s slang?” I wondered, “I have to read this.”

After finding a take-home copy of “Fables in Slang”, I read through George’s story and found many things in his style. Due to his time studying at Purdue (which included the study of languages), George included German rules into his writing, for example: In German, all nouns are capitalized, George does the same thing, and he also capitalizes for emphasis. Historians are correct for labeling George as a satirist. His stories are meant to be humorous and enjoyable. He doesn’t use satire to be snarky or sharp, but instead to make light of what is usually a negative story. While reading his stories, I was surprised to find how much I understood. As a teenager, it can be hard to understand the context of stories written so long ago, especially with so many unfamiliar words. George’s style is formal, while not losing a sense of casualness. Even if you don’t understand all of the words and phrases, you can still enjoy his work and laugh, instead of constantly referring to a dictionary. Here is an excerpt from one of his fables:

“Once upon a Time there was a Broad Girl who had nothing else to do and no Children to look after, so she thought she would be Benevolent.

She had scared all the Red Corpuscles out of the 2 by 4 Midget who rotated about her in a Limited Orbit and was known by Courtesy as her Husband. He was Soft for her, and so she got it Mapped out with Herself that she was a Superior Woman.

She knew that when she switched the Current on to herself she Used up about 6,000 Ohms an hour, and the whole Neighborhood had to put on the Blinders.”

This was taken from the opening of “The Fable of the Good Fairy with the Lorgnette, and Why She Got it Good.” It talks about a woman so snobbish, “Her clothes were full of Pin-Holes where she had been hanging Medals on Herself, and she used to go in a Hand-Ball Court every Day and throw up Bouquets, letting them bounce back and hit Her.” She goes and visits the poor, who, “Knew how to stand off the Rent-Man and the Dog Catcher; but when 235 pounds of Sunshine came wafting up the Street, they felt that they were up against a New Game.” The story ends with an upset child throwing a tomato can at the woman, after she makes his mother cry. The woman gives up her benevolence. The moral of the fable is ironic, stating: “In uplifting, get underneath.”

After “Fables in Slang”, George’s popularity only grew from there. His book “In Babel” sold 70,000 copies. George’s plays, “The College Widow” and “The Sultan of Sulu” gained massive popularity on Broadway, Chicago, and New York. Getting 5,000 dollars each week in royalties, George eventually purchased the Hazelden estate in Brook, Indiana. There, George was known for throwing extravagant parties, housing celebrities such as Harding, Taft, Charles Dawes. Booth Tarkington, and James Whitcomb Riley.

George had lived a full life. He attended Republican meetings, threw parties, travelled to Asia, Europe, and the Middle East, gave to charity, and helped erect Purdue’s Rose-Ade Stadium. The only thing he never did was marry. George Ade died May 18th, 1944 at age 78. After his death, he faded into obscurity, forgotten with his writings, left to collect dust. As I said in the beginning, it’s quite sad. He was a man beloved by all, not only that, but he came from our home state, and yet, how many of us have a book of his on our shelves? As said in the Dover Edition reprint of “Fables in Slang”, E.F. Bleiler wrote, “Perhaps this long deserved reissue of his earliest collections of fables will bring him the evaluation that he merits, away from…..the complete neglect that he has fallen into. His fables, I am sure, deserve recognition. They are remarkably perceptive, often brilliantly written, and are still funny and pertinent to the American scene.” George Ade may not be one of the most revered names in literature, but he is worth not being left unknown either.

Sources used

“The Best of George Ade” edited by A. L. Lazarus

“Fables in Slang” and “More Fables in Slang” by George Ade

“Circus Day” by George Ade

Photos found online

http://ronevry.com/AdeCatalog.html

http://www.britannica.com/biography/George-Ade

http://indianajournalismhof.org/1981/01/john-t-mccutcheon/

From Indiana STEM Grows Indiana Initiative

For the past several years, there has been an aggressive push for the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) subjects in our schools and community.  Emphasis on these subjects often overshadow other subjects.

The STEM subjects have also morphed to now be labeled as STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics plus Art + Design) in order to recognize the importance of the role that art and design play in a community, and how they are often related and interact to the original STEM areas.

Indiana has many pioneers and leaders throughout its history that championed STEAM before there was such a formal designation.  The automobile industry expanded with Studebaker in South Bend.  Indiana toolmakers invented new ways of farming and helped manufacturers.  Although the telephone is credited to Alexander Graham Bell, several inventors in Indiana helped to shape the modern telephone with new technology.  Indiana architecture is illustrated in New Harmony as part of its creation of an ideal community.

The Crown Point Community Library Indiana Room celebrates Lake County and Indiana STEAM innovation with its collection.  There are numerous volumes documenting the efforts and achievements of Hoosiers in the STEM/STEAM fields and many others.  A few titles are featured below; however, a trip to the Indiana Room will result in many more.

Indiana Built Motor Vehicles by Wallace Spencer Huffman

Indiana Toolmakers and Their Tools by Jack Devitt

The Telephone and Its Several Inventors by Lewis Coe

Indiana Scientists by Stephen Sargent Visher

Divided Paths, Common Ground: The Story of Mary Matthews and Lella Gaddis, Pioneering Purdue Women who Introduced Science into the Home by Angie Klink

Harmonist Construction by Don Blair

 

Sources and Further Review

 I-STEM Resource Network

Indiana STEM Initiative

STEM Education Coalition

STEM to STEAM

Indiana Afterschool STEM Initiative

2016 is the Indiana Bicentennial – Brush up on your Hoosier State History and Trivia before the year of celebrations.

Statehood Day – December 11, 1816, when Indiana became the 19th state of the Union

State Flag – Designed as part of a contest during the centennial celebration, the flag’s stars represent the states within the Union, with the 19th (Indiana) above the torch of liberty.

State Motto – The Crossroads of America adopted in 1973

State Nickname – The Hoosier State

State Seal – Depicts a scene reminiscence of Indiana at the time of statehood

State Bird – Cardinal

State Flower – Peony

State Stone– Salem Limestone

State Tree – Tulip Tree

State Poem – Indiana by Arthur Franklin Mapes

State Song – On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away by Paul Dresser

What is a Hoosier?Hoosier featureImage_mini

Although the exact origin of the nickname Hoosier is unknown, there are several theories floating around.  Most date from the 1830s, whether it is reference to John Finley’s poem The Hoosier’s Nest, the Greencastle newspaper founded by former governor James B. Ray, or the name of G.L. Murdock’s boat the Indiana Hoosier.  There are many origin theories that have been disputed, but one thing can be agreed upon- Hoosiers own the nickname with pride.

 

Sources and Further Review

Indiana Historical Society Fun Facts

Indiana Historical Bureau

State History and Trivia (with links to other information)

State Emblems

The Naming of Indiana

The Name Hoosier

Visit Indiana and Visit Indiana: State Symbols

Indiana Bicentennial 2016

Bicentennial Torch Relay

 

Books Available at Crown Point Community Library

All titles below are available for viewing in the Indiana Room and are not available for check out.  There are numerous books on the history and facts of Indiana, as well as other aspects about the Hoosier State, in the Adult Nonfiction and Juvenile Nonfiction sections of the library available for checkout; please browse our catalog for titles.

Indiana Memories: Collected Works of Arthur Franklin Mapes by Arthur Franklin Mapes

Hoosier’s Nest and Other Poems by John Finley

Who’s Your Hoosier Ancestor?: Genealogy for Beginners by Mona Robinson

Who’s Your County Named for? And Other Hoosier County Facts by Glenda S. Shull

Destination Indiana: Travels through Hoosier History by Ray Boomhower

Hoosiers: A New History of Indiana by James H. Madison

Forgotten Hoosiers: Profiles from Indiana’s Hidden History by Fred D. Cavinder

 

November is Historic Bridge Awareness Month

November was unofficially declared Historic Bridge Awareness Month in 2006 by HistoricBridges.org.  This month was selected by the organization for two reasons 1) it is the anniversary of the demolition of the Shanley Road Bridge and 2) it is a perfect time for reflection since it is the end of construction season and many bridges throughout the country have been torn down or renovated.  The Shanley Road Bridge was located over the Clarion River in Elk County, Pennsylvania, and was 113 years old when it was demolished in 2004.  Many think of covered bridges when they think of historical bridges; however, the structure, age, materials, and cultural significance all factor into what designates a bridge as historical.

Due to the maintenance of bridges and exposure to weather, wood structures often didn’t last long.  The development of covered bridges helped to protect the support structure from the elements, thus ensuring it to last longer than if left exposed.  The additional development of metal truss bridges occurred with the transportation boom of the railroads and then vehicles in the mid- 1800s.  Both are considered historic, especially as concrete bridges became the standard since they were considered more maintenance-free and long-lived than their metal and wooden counterparts.  They were considered old, not historically relevant, and were allowed to fall into disrepair.

It was estimated that at their peak during the second half of the 19th Century, there were over 12,000 covered bridges in the United States, around 500 of them were in the Hoosier State alone.  The first was built in Henry County in 1835.  There were two major builders in Indiana – J.J. Daniels and Joseph A. Britton from Rockville and the A.M. Kennedy family from Rushville.  Combined, they built 158 bridges in Indiana.  100 years after the first covered bridge was built, only 202 remained.  Today, that number is 89.  31 of them are in Parke County, the most in Indiana.

Of the several historic bridges in Lake County, one is located in Crown Point.  The covered bridge located in the Lake County Fairgrounds was built in 1878 by A.M. Kennedy and Sons.  It was originally built over the Little Flatrock River in Rush County.  The Burr Arch Truss styled bridge was called the Milroy Covered Bridge.  Conflicting sources also refer to this bridge as the Shelhorn Covered Bridge or the Shelbourne/Shelborne Covered Bridge.  In 1933, John Wheeler bought the bridge for $25.00 to save it from demolition.  The 85 ft. (plus a 10 ft. overhang) bridge was dismantled and rebuilt at its current location with the help of the WPA (Works Progress Administration).  At that time, the bridge was also repainted as cream with red trim.  The 16 ft. wide, 14 ft. high bridge expands over a gully in the park and can be enjoyed by the foot traffic of those touring the fairgrounds.

Fairgrounds Bridge

Organizations to preserve our transportation heritage exist on state and national levels.  The National Society for the Preservation of Covered Bridges, the National Center for Wood Transportation Structures, plus others raise awareness and money for preservation.  The Indiana Covered Bridge Society works to preserve and restore this part of our heritage.  State and local governments are recognizing the significance of these structures and are including maintenance costs in their budgets.  Many bridges are included on the National Register of Historic Places.  In addition to these measures, there is a certain sense of nostalgia that comes with older bridges and appeals to the folklore of the past.

Next time you are traveling, take notice of the bridges you cross.  Were they around 50 or 100 years ago?  Will they be here in the next century too?

 

Sources and Further Review

http://www.coveredbridgesociety.org/

http://historicbridges.org/

http://www.indianacrossings.org/

http://www.in.gov/indot/2531.htm

http://www.coveredbridges.com/

http://www.woodcenter.org/

http://www.nps.gov/nr/

http://www.nwitimes.com/news/opinion/another-historic-preservation-in-crown-point/article_3a16cbb7-484f-51d2-9cb2-cbcd72129ff7.html

 

Also see these titles, plus many more, at Crown Point Community Library.

Parke County: Indiana’s Covered Bridge Capital by Marsha Williamson Mohr

Iron Monuments to Distant Posterity: Indiana’s Metal Bridges by James L. Cooper

Covered Bridges in Indiana by Wayne McClellan Weber

 

MAKE A FAMILY COOKBOOK210913_iopencookbookbg

Celebrating Family History Month and National Cookbook Month with One Project

 

Family History Month

What is Family History Month?  It began with a Congressional resolution in 2001, and is still celebrated every October, to promote “the human family” by organizing and learning about our own familial roots.  There are numerous ways to celebrate your family – organize your family tree, preserve your photos, visit a family site, or a plethora of other ways, including celebrating your family’s heritage through food.

 

National Cookbook Month and Eat Better, Eat Together Month

National Cookbook Month is celebrated since so many cookbooks are published in October for the holiday season.  In fact, October 12th is Cookbook Launch Day in the publishing world.  There are bounties of cookbooks with nods toward families and heritages that may provide you with inspiration.

In addition to National Cookbook Month, October celebrates food and family with Eat Better, Eat Together Month.  The EBET campaign began in 1996, when Washington State University started a social marketing campaign to promote family meals.  The campaign grew to include making healthy choices around the table, which leads to healthy choices in daily life.   An eventual tagline was developed as, “Set the table for the family, set roots for a lifetime.”

Your family can celebrate all three by creating your own family cookbook.

 

Creating a Family Cookbook

There are multiple ways to create a family cookbook, but the best way is to jump in and get going!  There is no right or wrong way to create something your family will appreciate.  Start with these steps and watch your project percolate.

  1. Gather recipes from family members

Call, email, write family members to give you their favorites- they can be multi-generational recipes that have been passed down or new ones the current generation likes to serve.

  1. Organize the recipes

Find an appropriate organizational pattern and start typing!  By decade, by type of food, by region, or another way that works for your family, just get those recipes in writing.  Are they verbal recipes?  No problem, write the recipe yourself (both formally and how it was told to you).

  1. Find photos or other family memorabilia to put with recipes

You’ve put Grandma’s Apple Pie recipe in the book; maybe a photo of her serving the pie, or even her handwritten recipe next to it makes it all the more meaningful.

  1. Produce the cookbook

Whether you have it professionally printed or you just make copies for relatives, share the food and the love.

  1. Cook the food and enjoy together

Go to the store, get the ingredients, and start cooking!  Then gather around the table and enjoy the food and memories.

 

Read a good book with the theme of family and food

The Crown Point Community Library has numerous books for checkout, and to read in the Indiana Room, about family and food: fictional stories that center around a recipe, for children and adults; cookbooks for any occasion with the call number 641 in both the Adult and Juvenile Nonfiction sections; and even scrapbook and memoir resources to help you create your family cookbook with 745 and 808 call numbers.

Among all the titles available, here are a few to help inspire you as the idea of your family cookbook marinates in your mind.

Tia’s Tamales by Ana Baca

Eggs over Evie by Alison Jackson

Pie by Sarah Weeks

Recipe Box by Sandra Lee

The Quilter’s Kitchen by Jennifer Chiaverini

Julie and Julia by Julie Powell

Man with a Pan edited by John Donohue

Recipes from Across Indiana

 

Sources

http://www.cookbookpeople.com/blog/2010/09/28/make-a-family-cookbook-during-family-history-month/

http://saramoulton.com/2010/09/cookbook-how-to-write-your-own-family-cookbook/

http://thestonesoup.com/blog/2010/03/ten-tips-for-foolproof-recipe-writing/

http://www.thedailymeal.com/how-write-recipe

http://nutrition.wsu.edu/eteb/

 

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  • Crown Point

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