Indiana Heritage Research Grants abstracts 1991

The Indiana Heritage Research Grant program was jointly sponsored by the
Indiana Historical Society and the Indiana Humanities Council. from 1986 to 2001.

The Indiana History Bulletin, Volume 63, Numbers 5/6 and 9/10 contained the first and second year abstracts from the Indiana Heritage Research Grant Program; The following abstracts were published in Volume 66, number 2 of the Bulletin.

The grants are awarded annually by the Indiana Historical Society and the
Indiana Humanities Council (1500 North Delaware Street/Indianapolis, IN 46202/317-638-1500.) From 1986 through 2000, the program has awarded $937,363 to fund 337 projects. The abstracts provide interesting models for local history projects and make available resources for research.

For further information about projects, please contact the entity listed in each entry.

Shelby County Cooperative Cataloging Project (91-3003); Shelbyville-Shelby County Public Library in cooperation with Grover Museum (Shelby County Historical Society), and Shelby County Genealogical Society.

The Shelby County Cooperative Cataloging Project was an effort to catalog archival materials owned by Shelbyville-Shelby County Public Library and to transcribe short entries of all cataloged materials owned by the Shelby County Historical Society. The database will be updated periodically to reflect new entries. The Shelby County Cooperative Cataloging Project's Catalog may be obtained by sending for an order form to the Shelbyville-Shelby County Public Library and enclosing a self-addressed, stamped envelope to 57 W. Broadway, Shelbyville, IN 46176.

Beeson Genealogical Library (91-3004); Blackford County Historical Society, 321 North High Street, Hartford City, IN 47348.

The goal was to catalog, organize, and prepare a card catalog for the Beeson Genealogical Collection to facilitate the effective use of the material available. There are over 1,500 volumes and four filing cabinets of pamphlets and related materials. A workshop was held for the Blackford County Historical Society to help it better meet the needs of researchers.

Unlocking the Doors to Early Wells County History (91-3005); Bluffton-Wells County Public Library, 200 West Washington, Bluffton, IN 46714.

The project indexed available newspapers on microfilm in the Bluffton-Wells County Public Library from the early 1850s through 1910.

There are now two separate indexes covering the earliest dates through 1910. The first is a general subject index to the newspapers. The other is a listing of obituaries through 1910. Print copies of both are available in the Indiana Room and have met with enthusiastic praise. Both databases have been loaded onto the public access computers.

Arrangements were made to provide copies of the print indexes to the Allen County Public Library. Any other library wishing to obtain this material should contact the Bluffton library.

Culbertson Mansion Library Ceiling and Walls Research (91-3007); Friends of Culbertson Mansion, 914 East Main Street, New Albany, IN 47150.

The researchers, using chemical strippers, removed layers of paint, exposing the original designs of the frescoed ceiling and walls of the Library at Culbertson Mansion State Historic Site. After this process, the primary researcher compiled a report, showing in detail what the designs would have been like during the time the Culbertson family occupied the house (1869-1899). This report, along with a video program prepared by the Case Methods class at New Albany High School, will be located in the office of the Culbertson site.

Understanding Our Beginning from German to English (91-3009); St. Lucas United Church of Christ, 33 West Virginia Street, Evansville, IN 47710.

The result of this project is a translated copy of the First Book of Protocol 1889 to 1901. This enables the members of St. Lucas, as well as any other interested person, to look into the beginning of St. Lucas Church, and to have factual data about St. Lucas and the area around the church.
A bound volume was produced and is available at the St. Lucas Library, St. Lucas Archives, Willard Library, or Eden Theological Seminary Archives.

Crime and Punishment of Prisoners in the Montgomery County Jail (91-3011); Montgomery County Cultural Foundation/The Old Jail Museum, 225 North Washington Street, Crawfordsville, IN 47933-1737.

The research produced a general base of material demonstrating the patterns in crime from 1880 to 1970 rather than a specific look at crime in Montgomery County.

The researcher relied mainly on newspaper accounts and a few surviving record books once kept at what is now known as the Old Jail Museum. The resulting paper provides case examples of specific crimes and incarcerations in Montgomery County.

A "statistical type" of survey of crime in the period of the Old Jail's existence resulted from the research of the overall project. A key finding from this research demonstrated that not only did the definition of crime change from the opening of the Old Jail in 1882, but by its closure in 1973, new classifications had been given to offenses and punishments.

A one-thousand-page book containing photocopied material from published Indiana state records, the paper on crime in Montgomery County, and a notebook on national crime were the significant resources produced from the grant project.

Dependent and Neglected Children and Their Families, Tippecanoe County, 1887-1916 (91-3013); Tippecanoe County Area Genealogical Society, Tippecanoe County Historical Association, co-sponsors, 909 South Street, Lafayette, IN 47901.

This project focused on documents from the Tippecanoe County Children's Association and Board of Children's Guardians and produced results in genealogy and social history. The Association was founded in 1887 to help dependent children by placing them out in good substitute families. Records on 1,092 dependent children separated from their families that were previously unavailable have been indexed and are available at the Alameda McCollough Library, Lafayette.

The study from 1887-1916, found that the goal of placing dependent children was attained in only a small percentage of cases. A large percentage (43 percent) of those foster placements failed. Association practices changed to work with parents and families.

Indiana University School of Dentistry Library Archives Project (91-3014); Indiana University Research and Sponsored Programs, Room 618, 620 Union Drive, Indianapolis, IN 46202-5167.

The project organized, cataloged, publicized, and displayed a rich, but neglected archives collection in a small, specialized library. Such materials are of interest to the faculty, staff, students, and alumni of this institution, and to dental historians all over the world. There are very few dental libraries in the United States, and this library is one of the largest. The scarcity of dental libraries in general makes whatever archival material is in them both rare and valuable.

A wide variety of manuscripts, letters, photographs, diplomas, class composites, patient record books, organization minutes, and personal items have been arranged in file cabinets or displayed so that they can provide an excellent source of historical information on dentistry. A special supplement to the library's newsletter, The Library Tipster News, provides a detailed description on the project. A copy can be obtained at no charge from the library.

The Murals of Charles Newcomb: A Hagerstown Heritage (91-3015); Historic Hagerstown, Inc., Hagerstown Art Association, co-sponsors, 96 1/2 East Main Street, P.O. Box 126, Hagerstown, IN 47346.

The research project has documented the career of Hagerstown artist Charles Newcomb and told the story of how he came to paint wall murals in 1913 for the Public Hall in the I.O.O.F. building at Hagerstown, IN.
A video produced through this research grant is a capsule of history of Hagerstown from the 1880s to 1913 when the murals were painted and tells the story of Charles Newcomb and his family. It shows the connection of the mural to the art of Maxfield Parrish.

Photographs of turn-of-the-century Hagerstown, other original Newcomb art, and documents are shown. Much new information about Hagerstown, the business and cultural climate, and the importance of the Newcomb family are shown.

Learning to Share Our Heritage (91-3018); Delaware County Historical Alliance, P.O. Box 1266, Muncie, IN 47308.

A training manual for docents was the result of this project. The materials include educational content and operational and hospitality information. The teaching method creates a framework of thought outlining how the organization works.

Topics are focused and clearly organized to facilitate visitor learning experiences as well as docent training in content and presentation. Educational content is based on a wealth of archival material and material culture in the Moore-Youse Home collections.

Somewhere in Time (91-3021); East Central Reinvestment Corporation, 616 East Main Street, Muncie, IN 47305.

The East Central Neighborhood collection consists of photographs, letters, receipts, and brochures pertaining to the East Central Neighborhood of Muncie. This collection covers a time period from the early days of Muncie to the present.

Many photographs are turn-of-the-century, showing daily life, family portraits, parties, and architecture. Letters are from families which lived in the neighborhood. Included are the neighborhood association's archives, which consist of letters, papers, and clippings that cover the history of the organization and the Old Washington Street Festival.

This grant has made it possible to create a self-guided walking tour of the Emily Kimbrough Historic District. Included are photographs, dates, and family histories. Copies of the tour are available at the Muncie Visitors Bureau, Muncie Public Library, and Muncie Community Schools.

Preservation of Selected Materials in the Local History Collection (91-3023); St. Joseph County Public Library, 304 South Main Street, South Bend, IN 46601.

Hundreds of original and one-of-a-kind documents in the public library's Local History/Genealogy collection were preserved. The library hosted four public programs and one program for fourth grade students from an area school. All programs highlighted the local history/genealogy materials preserved as a result of the grant. The resources preserved and made accessible include local newspapers, Indiana maps, and unique programs, postcards, and photographs. These resources are housed in the St. Joseph County Public Library.

Other resources produced from the project include the publication of "A Guide to the Genealogical Collection of the St. Joseph County Public Library," "Getting Along with Your Uncooperative Ancestors" research guide, "Indiana History Pathfinder," and a "Local History Pathfinder for Children." All of these resources are housed and available at the St. Joseph County Public Library.

Switzerland County Courthouse Materials Identified and Classified (91-3026); Switzerland County Historical Society, P.O. Box 201, Vevay, IN 47043.

Records of Switzerland County were recovered from the treasurer's and auditor's offices. Mixed among these records were a varied assortment of many departments of county government. The records had been poorly maintained and were "rescued" at the time the courthouse renovation was already in progress. The project included identifying and listing the materials discovered. The list is being made available to visitors to the museum.

The Tax Duplicates are the most nearly complete record set and will provide names and assessments of interest to historians and genealogists. Other materials included trustee and school reports, county vouchers and receipts, soldier's relief, selective service and exemptions, census records, election tallies, and signs. The materials all required cleaning, sorting, and selection of storage methods.

Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana Archives, Indianapolis Office (91-3029); Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana, 1028 North Delaware Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202.

Historic Landmark's Foundation of Indiana (HLFI) is a statewide non-profit organization concerned with the historic preservation of cultural resources. The grant's matching funds helped the Indianapolis Office of HLFI to organize its files, reports and special studies, and financial documents into an archival collection. The archives contains records primarily from 1977 to 1988, with a few earlier documents relating to Indianapolis subjects which were transferred from the state headquarters.

The collection contains documented activities of Historic Landmarks Foundation, portraying the growth of the historic preservation movement locally, and detailed research on thousands of historic buildings located within historic districts and potentially-historic study areas. There is a finding aid to facilitate research.

Preservation and Cataloging of the Art and Photographic Collection of the Archives of Convent Immaculate Conception in Ferdinand, Indiana (91-3032); Sisters of St. Benedict of Ferdinand, Indiana, Inc.

The goal of this project was identification, preservation, cataloging, and recognition of art by Ferdinand Benedictine Sisters. A number of accomplished artists have lived in the monastery since 1867; 105 works by 21 different artists were identified and labeled.

A slide-lecture-80 slides and a script-featuring numerous works in the art collection has been prepared. Copies have been deposited with the Indiana Historical Society, the Indiana Humanities Council, and a number of other art museums and college art departments of southern Indiana. A 12-minute video tape was also made, which gives a good picture of what life is like in a religious community of Catholic women today and summarizes 125 years of history. A copy of the video has been placed with the Indiana Historical Society.

For further information, or to obtain use of the slide or video programs, contact: The Archives, Sisters of St. Benedict, 802 East 10th Street, Ferdinand, IN 47532-9239; telephone 812-367-1411, Ext. 2607.

Documenting the Melting Pot-Cataloguing Resources for Ethnic Research (91-3033); East Chicago Public Library, 2401 East Columbus Drive, East Chicago, IN 46312.

A vast number of unidentified photographs were given to the East Chicago Public Library by the East Chicago Historical Society before it disbanded. An effort was mounted to identify the people and places portrayed in the society photographs by having current and former East Chicago residents view the pictures.

The library obtained money to preserve the pictures by placing them in archival envelopes made of acid-free paper and storing them in an organized system of file folders. Over 3,300 former society photographs were processed and preserved.

Finally, the project included an effort to get some of the photographs entered on OCLC so that they could have a wider impact as a resource for students, historians, writers, and researchers. The materials entered in the national database are focused strongly on five important topics in East Chicago's history: education, industrial growth, entertainment, scouting, and the history of the library itself.

Key to Switzerland County History (91-3034); Switzerland County School Corporation, 305 West Seminary, Vevay, IN 47043.

An index of the Weekly Reveille, 1855-1856 and the Indiana Reveille, 1857-1859 was developed. Some major newsworthy articles of this five-year period include information about politics, the major influence of the Ohio River and its steamboats and flatboats, the change of common schools to free education, prohibition and temperance societies, the importance of church, social activities, and the major production of agricultural goods.

The index may be obtained from: Virginia Reeves, Switzerland County High School Library, 1020 West Main Street, Vevay, IN 47043.

Looking Backwards: An Indexing Project of Early Corydon Newspapers (91-3035); Corydon Public Library, 117 West Beaver, Corydon, IN 47112; and Harrison County Historical Society, 720 North Capital Avenue, Corydon, IN 47112.

This project was an attempt at indexing the earliest known newspapers published in Corydon, which have been microfilmed. This index compiles the data by listing the headline or subject of the article, title of the newspaper in which the article appears, date of publication, section, page, and column where the article appears.

Copies of this index are stored in the Corydon Public Library, the Indiana Historical Society Library, and the Indiana Humanities Council Resource Center. Copies may be made available to interested parties by contacting the Corydon Public Library.

Indiana Transportation Museum Library and Archives Cataloging (91-3036); Indiana Transportation Museum, P.O. Box 83, Noblesville, IN 46060.

Books, maps, timetables, travel brochures, construction and repair blueprints, repair manuals, operating forms, tickets and passes, rights of way and trackage, airport layouts, company histories, safety manuals, statistical charts, building and bridge plans, rule books, equipment registers, etc. have been cataloged and are available in the museum library at Forest Park, Noblesville.

Martin Photograph Collection: Preserving a University's Portrait (91-3043); University Archives, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, IN 47809.

The Martin Collection is a commercial photograph collection that was donated to Indiana State University in 1976. The collection contains those photographs taken at or for the university by Martin Studio, ca. 1920 to 1975. It was believed to contain an estimated 35,000 photographic prints and negatives housed in 9,000 to 10,000 "job packets." The goals and accomplishments of the Martin Photograph Collection project included rehousing the photographs in archival quality, acid-free sleeves, envelopes, and folders.

The collection has been surveyed and arranged in numerical (Job Number) order while at the same time developing an item (job) level inventory. The University Archives has built upon this work to create an automated catalog structure. Employing a database management system (MARCON), a format was developed which permits access to the collection by date, title, and subject terms.

All photographs reproduced and mounted for exhibit are available for loan from the University Archives. A brochure from the project features suggestions for photographic preservation measures and was available to the public at all programs. Copies of this brochure and exhibit guides are available upon request from the University Archives as long as supplies permit.

Aurora Telegraphs of 1865: A Cataloging and Indexing Project (91-3044); Hillforest Historical Foundation, Inc., P.O. Box 127, 213 Fifth Street, Aurora, IN 47001.

Hillforest Historical Foundation, Aurora, cataloged and indexed 550 telegraph messages which were sent or received from this Ohio River port town in July and August 1865. Many of the messages record everyday events, such as business transactions, an illness or death in the family, travel plans, and the theft of a horse and buggy.

The historic documents are housed in acid-free boxes and files at Hillforest. A book, Aurora Telegraphs of 1865: A Cataloging and Indexing Project, with all the telegraph messages transcribed and indexed by subject, was produced during the grant. Copies of this publication are located at Hillforest, Dearborn County Historical Society, Lawrenceburg Public Library, Aurora Public Library, Cincinnati Public Library, South Dearborn High School Library, Indiana Historical Society, Indiana Humanities Council.

Alexandria, Indiana Becomes Small Town, USA (91-3046); Alexandria-Monroe Public Library, 117 East Church Street, Alexandria, IN 46001; and Alexandria-Monroe Township Historical Society, 105 East Church Street, Alexandria, IN 46001.

The goals of this project were to research the files of the Office of War Information in Suitland, Maryland to discover why Alexandria, Indiana, was selected as the subject of a booklet, Small Town USA, distributed overseas during World War II. More than 200 photographs were taken and hundreds of interviews with townspeople conducted during a 1943 "official" visit to Alexandria.
The intent of the project research was to produce a manuscript for publication in a historical journal. Publication has not yet been arranged. Opportunities for presenting the research at historical meetings are also being sought.

Enlarging Community Heritage: Historical Resources in the Calumet Region (91-3047); Hammond Public Library, 564 State Street, Hammond, IN 46320.

The Hammond Public Library preserved, identified, and indexed 689 file folders of print and non-print materials. More specific subject headings were developed and entered into the library's online catalog.
Work was begun on interpretative cataloging of pictures in the collection and on identification of 200 more pictures whose subjects were unknown. A booklet on the history of Hammond and a floor-standing display will be developed.

In Pursuit of Leisure Time: The Development and Role of Amusement Parks in Indianapolis, 1880s-1970 (91-3048); POLIS Research Center, IUPUI, 425 University Boulevard, Indianapolis, IN 46202.

"In Pursuit of Leisure Time" examined the growth of amusement parks in the city of Indianapolis as an expression of a developing popular culture, beginning in the late nineteenth century and continuing into the mid-twentieth century. It traced the stories of Fairview, Wonderland, White City/Broad Ripple, Riverside, and Little America.

The project culminated in the development of extensive files of photocopied newspaper articles and related materials that are located at the POLIS Research Center at IUPUI. The project also generated a research report which will be deposited in local historical repositories.
Contact the POLIS Research Center at 317-274-2455.

An Oral History of Arsenal Technical High School (91-3050); Arsenal Tech High School Alumni Association and Administration/Faculty, Arsenal Tech High School, 1500 East Michigan Street, Indianapolis, IN 46201.

Oral history was used to record memories of alumni of Arsenal Technical High School who recounted their experiences (1912-1964) as students at one of the largest, most diverse high schools in the country.
Sixty-eight interviews were transcribed into printed form. All of the tapes, transcriptions, photographs of the participants and buildings, a campus tour guide on tape and memorabilia given by alumni will be placed in the Arsenal Tech Alumni Archives on the campus.

The East Photograph Collection-Evolution of a Southern Indiana Town (91-3052); Monroe County Historical Museum, 202 East Sixth Street, Bloomington, IN 47408.

The East Photograph project sought to identify 90 unidentified photographs from a collection of 312 images of houses in Bloomington in the 1930s and to provide a study of the changes to housing styles from 1930 to 1990 by making a current photograph of each site in the full 312 photograph collection.

During the project, 61 of the unidentified photographs were identified. The sites of the other 222 identified pictures were checked and confirmed. Then, each of the identified 283 sites was photographed. A scale for rating the amount of change of each site from 1930 to 1991 was developed.

The 312 original photographs and the corresponding 1991-1992 pictures are housed at the Monroe County Historical Museum and are available for research.

History of the Waterford Inn (91-3055); Purdue University at Fort Wayne, 2101 Coliseum Boulevard East, Fort Wayne, IN 46805.

The History of the Waterford Inn, traces the history of the owners of the property known as the Waterford Inn, La Porte County, from the 1830s to 1993. Local historical events are related to regional and national history. Developments in transportation are related to the history of the inn.

A companion video tape, A Visit to the Waterford Inn, provides a visual record of the existing conditions of the exterior and interior of the inn and adjacent structures and historic site. An analysis of the building is provided by Historic Preservation Consultant, Craig Leonard.

Materials may be obtained from the Allen County Public Library, Genealogical Collection; La Porte County Public Library; La Porte County Historical Museum, La Porte County Courthouse Complex; Michigan City Public Library; Michigan City Historical Society, Inc., Old Lighthouse Museum.

Myths of Wyandotte Cave: Developing an Oral/Written History Base (91-3056); Wyandotte Woods & Cave State Recreation Area, Division of Forestry, Indiana Department of Natural Resources; and Crawford County Historical and Genealogical Society, Inc. Both are located at Rural Route 1, Leavenworth, IN 47137.

A historical base of oral and written material has been established at the Wyandotte Cave office for the use of writers, publishers, historians, and researchers. Numerous written collections have been duplicated with an extensive bibliography plus computerized card file index system for easier referencing. Video and audio cassettes containing oral history of the cave and Wyandotte community have been transcribed.
For more information contact: Property Manager, Wyandotte Cave, R.R. # 1, Box 85, Leavenworth, IN 47137; telephone 812-738-2782