HOOSIER HISTORY HIGHLIGHTS: Indiana Ratifies the 15th Amendment

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

Hoosier History Highlights

May 9 - May 15

The Week in Indiana History


1869     Indiana ratified the 15th Amendment to the United States Constitution.  The third and last of the "Reconstruction Amendments," the amendment prohibits the denial of voting rights based upon race or skin color.  Indiana was the 14th state to approve the measure.  It was passed into law by the United States Congress on February 3, 1870.

Eli Lilly

1876     Colonel Eli Lilly opened a laboratory on Pearl Street in Indianapolis.  He had three employees, including his 14-year-old son Josiah.  The firm grew over the years to become one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world.  


1902   The Soldiers and  Sailors Monument was formally dedicated in Indianapolis.  General Lew Wallace was Master of Ceremonies.  The program included the reading of a poem by James Whitcomb Riley and music written and performed by John Philip Sousa and his band.

Doris Day

1946     24-year-old Doris Day appeared at the Indiana Roof Ballroom in Indianapolis.  A singer with Les Brown and his "band of renown," she had already scored a number-one hit record with "Sentimental Journey."  She recorded many other hits before going to Hollywood, where she starred in scores of popular movies.  


1961    Newspapers carried reports about the early stages of the massive $850 million interstate highway system.  Interstates 70 and 74  would carry east-west traffic through Indiana, and Interstates 65 and 69 would run from north to south.  Interstate 465 was proposed as a beltway around the city of Indianapolis.  The highways would transform the state and its cities in many ways.


1989     Indiana Governor Evan Bayh signed a bill which created the state lottery.  The legislation also allowed for pari-mutuel wagering on horse racing.  A constitutional prohibition against a lottery had been repealed the previous November.  



     Th' safest way t' double your money is t' fold it over once an' put it in your pocket.

(Kin Hubbard, The Indianapolis News, May 20, 1908)


Take a "Virtual Tour" of the Indiana Statehouse

Follow this link to subscribe to Hoosier History Highlights and to view archived editions

Follow us on Instagram: @instatehousetouroffice

Indiana Statehouse Tour Office

Indiana Department of Administration

Guided tours of the Indiana Statehouse are offered Monday through Saturday.  For more information, please contact the tour office.  

(317) 233-5293

Indiana Quick Quiz

Presidential Visits to Indiana

1.  In 1866, this President spoke at the Bates House Hotel in Indianapolis.  He had taken office upon the assassination of his predecessor.  a/ Andrew Johnson  b/ Theodore Roosevelt  c/ U. S. Grant

2.  In 1927, this President led a Flag Day Parade in Hammond.    a/ James Garfield  b/ Rutherford Hayes c/ Calvin Coolidge

3.  In  1982, this President was in Fort Wayne to help pile sandbags along the flooded St. Mary's River. a/ Richard Nixon        b/ Ronald Reagan  c/ George H. W. Bush

Answers Below 

Hoosier Quote of the Week


"In the spring of the year, when the blood is too thick, there's nothing so rare, as a sassafras stick."

- - -  James Buchanan Elmore (1857-1942)

Born in  the town of Alamo in Montgomery County, Indiana, Elmore became known as the "Bard of Alamo."  He wrote hundreds of poems about nature and rural life.


Did You Know?

     "Victory," the lady at the top of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, was taken down ten years ago for repair and restoration.  The 38-foot statue, created by sculptor George Brewster, had been in place atop the monument for 117 years.  Weighing almost 20,000 pounds, the famous lady needed special care in coming down.  After restoration work was complete, she was on view for a short time at ground level (pictured.)  Soon, however,  she was back on her perch, 284 feet above Monument Circle.  

ANSWERS:  1.  a/ Andrew Johnson   2. c/ Calvin Coolidge        3. b/ Ronald Reagan