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This Week's Facts:

  1. Document of the Month Filled with Fun Fair Facts

  2. USDA Resources Highlight Agriculture Stats

  3. Online Exhibit Presents Indiana State Fair History

  4. Census Profiles State Fairs Across America

Indiana State Fair Fast Facts!

  • The Ind. State Fair is the country's 6th oldest State Fair, originating in 1852. 

  • 2010 is the Year of Pigs at the State Fair. As of June of 2010, Indiana’s hog/pig inventory is 3,600,000. Indiana is 5th in the nation for pork production.

  • Indiana Pork production contributes $3 billion to Indiana’s economy annually.

  • This year at the State Fair, learn about Japan through the Bridges to Japan exhibit in the new International Pavilion, which will feature technological advances like “humanoid” robots and a Shinkansen bullet train display.

  • "Indiana is the only state in the U.S. with three Japanese auto assembly plants, with 220 Japanese facilities in Indiana employing more than 43,000 Hoosiers, making Japan the clear front-runner among the state's international partners.” - Theresa Kulczak, executive director of the Japan-America Society of Indiana


Friday Facts Editorial Team:

Katharine Springer
State Data Center Coordinator

Elisabeth O’Donnell
Documents Librarian
Kim Brown-Harden
Documents Coordinator

Indiana State LibraryFederal Depository Library 

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2010 Indiana State FairIn honor of the Indiana State Fair starting this week, we are dedicating this issue of Friday Facts to all things Fair-related.  The fair runs from August 6 through the 22 and most days is open from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM (EDT).  Before you visit the fair, make sure to check out their website to find out who will be there in concert, see complete fair hours and even buy tickets for events! 

The 2010 Fair celebrates the Year of the Pig.  Be sure to visit the fair this year to get your share of bacon, hog calling and pig racing. See you there!

Document of the Month Filled with Fun Fair Facts

ISL: State Documents SectionThis month’s document will highlight one of the early fair publications. The Indiana State Fair Premium List includes exhibition programs, members of the Indiana State Board of Agriculture, premium (prize) lists from various entry categories and rules and regulations. They include interesting facts and details about the fair.  For example,  general admission to the fairgrounds was $0.50 in 1913! If you had a Berkshire Boar that was two years old or older, you could win $15 for the first place prize.  The list also includes a list of other state fairs with their dates and locations and a listing of smaller fairs throughout the state and the dates they occurred.  The Premium list was published 1913-1958 and can be found at the Indiana State Library at ISLI 606 I.   Enjoy the fair!

USDA Resources Highlight Agriculture Stats

US Department of AgricultureAs everyone knows, one huge part of the State Fair is the agricultural aspect.  Whether you’re showing animals, looking at the Antique Tractor Barn or even trying to seek out the biggest pumpkin in the state, you know how important agriculture is to Indiana.  If something piques your fancy while you’re at the fair and you want to learn a little more about it, the US Department of Agriculture has several databases that may help you.  If you’re looking for actual statistics related to agriculture, the first place you’ll want to stop at is the National Agricultural Statistics Service.  This sub-agency of the USDA compiles agricultural data from respected sources – both government and non-government – and makes them available for you.  You can search from their homepage or go directly to their Quick Stats page.

You also may want to check out Amber Waves, the USDA journal on the economics of agriculture.  You can find information on livestock, biofuels or studies that have been done on a variety of agricultural topics.  They also include some statistical information.  Finally, you can access citations to agricultural resources by searching AGRICOLA, the National Agricultural Library catalog.

Online Exhibit Presents Indiana State Fair History

ISL Online Exhibit: State FairThe Indiana State Library’s Manuscripts and Rare Books Collection has an online exhibit  celebrating the history of the Indiana State Fair!  This is a great collection of photographs chronicling the State Fair throughout its history.  You can look up pictures from the 1973 Pet Parade or even a poster from the 1887 Fair.  Check out the collection and get ready to celebrate the last days of summer with elephant ears, lemon shake-ups and tons of exhibits.  Join the Indiana State Library and other State agencies on Hoosier Heritage Day, Thursday, August 12th at the State Fair.  You can watch historical re-enactments or even answer some Indiana trivia!

Census Profiles State Fairs Across America

Census: American Fact FinderProfile America, a public service of the U.S. Census Bureau, provides 60 second sound bytes of current events and observances. One of the latest profiles, State Fair Time, mentions state fairs across the country, including Indiana. Transcripts and links to mp3 and wav files are available through the Census Bureau’s Multimedia Gallery here. Radio stations can request a CD of the feature by calling (301) 763-3011 or writing

Friday Facts is a free publication produced by the Indiana State Library, distributed weekly in an electronic format.
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