Winter News From the Indiana Historical Bureau


Winter 2016/17  |  News from the Indiana Historical Bureau


Apply Today

Interested in a new Indiana state historical marker for 2018? The Indiana Historical Marker application cycle for markers to be dedicated in 2018 will open in March 2017. Applications will be due on June 23, 2017. The Indiana Historical Bureau has revised the application process this year, and made it a one-step process (eliminating the “Intent to Apply” prospectus).

It’s never too early to start planning, so be sure to check out the updated Guidelines and Procedures for information about the marker program – including the process to obtain a marker, requirements, and costs – and start gathering your primary sources to support the application!

Starting in 2017, IHB has committed to complete more markers annually than we have over the past decade, and we expect to dedicate 20 new markers in 2017. If you have any inquiries as you start planning, please contact Casey Pfeiffer at or (317) 232-2537.


Come celebrate Indiana history with us! This spring, IHB will help communities across the state dedicate several new historical markers. All dedications are open to the public and we would love to see you there!

Upcoming dedications include:

  • Indians Murdered 1824 (Pendleton, Madison Co.) – Wednesday, March 22
  • Passenger Pigeon Extinction (Metamora, Franklin Co.) – Monday, April 3 
  • Steele Home, Studio, Gardens (Nashville, Brown Co.) – Saturday, May 20
  • Integrating Basketball (Bloomington, Monroe Co.) – Spring 2017
  • Branch McCracken (Monrovia, Morgan Co.) – Spring 2017
  • Little Sisters of the Poor (Indianapolis, Marion Co.) – Spring 2017
  • Booth Tarkington (Indianapolis, Marion Co.) – Spring 2017

Interested in learning more about these topics or attending the dedication? Be sure to follow us on Facebook and check out our blog, Blogging Hoosier History, where we will be sharing information on many of these topics in the coming weeks and months. See our website for dedication times as they become available. 



In 2016, during the state’s bicentennial year, IHB worked with many wonderful county historians, local bicentennial coordinators, and volunteers, to conduct a comprehensive survey of every state historical marker installed across Indiana dating back to the 1940s.

As of December 31, 2016, 544 markers were currently standing across the state! You can find these markers in 88 of our 92 counties. The four counties without any standing state historical markers are Clinton, Dubois, Jay, and Newton. IHB staff are committed to working with these counties this year to commemorate their history with new state historical markers.

Did you know that in 2016 volunteers across the state helped clean and repaint at least 14 state historical markers? In addition to these markers, IHB staff, working with marker sponsors and city officials coordinated the repairs, refurbishment, and reinstallation of ten markers, and oversaw the installation of four new posts for markers.

Thank you to everyone who helped with these projects and the marker survey over the year. We could not have done it without you!

This year, IHB will be surveying the northern counties of the state. We ask county historians and volunteers to submit photos of markers in these counties later this spring and summer so that we can continue to monitor each marker’s condition over time. 


Talking Hoosier History


The Indiana Historical Bureau is proud to announce the launch of Talking Hoosier History, a monthly podcast released on the first of every month. A teaser episode was released on February 1 and can be found on our website! Our first full length episode is titled "Bill Garrett and the Integration of Indiana University Basketball" and will be available March 1, 2017. Talking Hoosier History can be found on iTunes, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. 

Download and listen to the first episode then rate and review the podcast to help us improve and grow! 


Annette Scherber, our intern from IUPUI's Public History graduate program, and Nicole Poletika, research and digital content editor at IHB, have continued to produce fantastic content for the IHB Blog. Here are some highlights from this winter:

"Still Pretty Close to Prehistoric Savagery:" Booth Tarkington's Plea for U.S. Intervention in WWII


Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Booth Tarkington harnessed the power of his pen to convince war-weary Americans to abandon isolationism before the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Learn more about the Hoosier author here:

Before Rosa Parks: Laura Fisher's Fight Against "Jim Crowism"

On November 19, 1927, Laura Fisher boarded a Greyhound bus in Richmond, Indiana.

Sick and feeling weak, the African American passenger sat at the front, where warm air was plentiful, drawing the ire of the driver for violating his self-imposed "Jim Crow" law. After refusing to sit in the "negro" section at the back of the bus, he forcefully ejected her twice, drawing a large crowd of onlookers. Determined to fight for equal rights in an increasingly segregated Indiana, Fisher took the driver to court.

Learn about the outcome of the trial via Blogging Hoosier History:

Laura Fisher

Corn, Tomatoes, & POWs: Hoosier Agriculture During WWII


During WWII, U.S. farmers felt the pressure of wartime demands and Indiana was no exception. 

Across the state, POWs boosted crop production and assisted with canning, changing Hoosiers’ perception of the war. Windfall residents seemed to hold their breath as they "awaited the sight of our hated enemies," but "this group was quite different than we expected.” By the fall of 1944, Windfall locals, like other Hoosiers, admitted they would miss the POWs, especially “the outdoor concerts of a large chorus of voices” of the prisoners singing as they worked or rested in the evening.

Learn more about how Hoosiers and POWs labored together to bolster supplies for troops:

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Check out our top two social media posts this winter. Follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram to get new Indiana history tidbits every day!

Lost New London

 Lost New London

What destroyed the town of New London in Jefferson County, Indiana? 

New London was laid out in 1815 along the Ohio River, about three miles from Hanover College. The town plan included a public square and five streets that ran parallel to the river. Eventually it had a post office, store, and tobacco warehouse and became part of the shipping business on the Ohio River. Sometime after the 1870s, it appears New Londoners abandoned their town as it began to be absent from Jefferson County maps. Local legends claimed that Ohio River pirates or Saint Louis counterfeiting gang members made the area uninhabitable. However, the more likely reason is that high waters from the Ohio River flooded the town regularly, so people eventually moved to other areas of the county to keep themselves and their personal property safe. 

Explore these maps of Jefferson Co. and try to find New London and

First High School Basketball Game Radio Transmission

Excitement radiated on and off the court during a December 15, 1916 high school basketball game, in which Lebanon tested their mettle against the defending state champs from Lafayette Jeff.

While the rivals duked it out on the Lafayette YMCA court, a physics teacher from Jefferson High School transmitted updates about the game via wireless radio to a Lebanon resident, Rayard Shumate. This is the earliest yet known radio transmission of an Indiana high school basketball game. Shumate then telephoned businesses in Lebanon to convey the "first hand dope" to local fans.

The Lebanon squad went on to defeat Jeff, 21-13, and would later succeed Jeff by winning the 1917 state championship the following March.

Radio Transmission

County of the Month Series

In January, IHB began its "County of the Month" Series, with Jefferson County January! Every month, IHB staff will post interesting tidbits about the County of the Month daily. We're currently in full swing with Fulton County February. Upcoming counties of the month include:

  • Monroe County March
  • Allen County April
  • Montgomery County May
  • Jasper County June

Don't see your county yet? Don't worry! Over the next few years, we'll cover all 92 of Indiana's counties! Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to see when your county is featured!


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Go to to see new merchandise

New items include:



Lincoln Tee

Made in Indiana by Hoosier Proud, this poly-cotton blend shirt celebrates one of Indiana's most famous sons, Abraham Lincoln . 

Made in Indiana by Hoosier Proud. Lady Victory keeps watch over the Circle atop the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument in Indy, and now she's on this incredibly comfortable t-shirt. 

Lady Victory





Satisfy your sweet tooth with this assorted box of Monastery Baked Goods Cookies! This assortment includes Springerle, Buttermint, Ginger Snaps, Hildegard, and Shortbread Cookies. These delicious snacks are made by the Sisters of St. Benedict in Ferdinand, Indiana. 



Hoosier Women at Work: Science, Technology, and Medicine

Building on the success of last year’s Hoosier Women at Work conference, IHB and the Indiana State Library will host “Hoosier Woman at Work," a women’s history symposium, on April 1, 2017.

This one-day conference explores and expands our knowledge of women’s contributions to Indiana’s science, technology, and medical fields via speakers, presentations, and panel discussions. Learn more here.

Can't make it to the conference but want to stay in the know? Follow along on twitter: #INwomenwork. 


NCPH 2017 Annual Meeting is coming to Indianapolis

And IHB will be there! 

 The 2017 theme for the National Council on Public History's annual meeting will be "The Middle: Where Did We Come From? Where Are We Going?" and will be held April 19-22 at The Westin in Indianapolis. 

Representing Hoosier State Chronicles, Justin Clark and Jill Weiss will be hosting a pop-up exhibit at the conference on April 20 from 12:30pm to 2:30pm. They will be exhibiting how to use HSC in research.

Lindsey Beckley and Casey Pfeiffer will be leading a State Historical Marker Tour on April 21, where they will explore the history of downtown through state historical markers.

 We will also be attending the conference daily with free Indiana history resources as well and merchandise from our shop! 

Interested in attending? Register here before March 9.

Preserving Historic Places Conference 

The annual Preserving Historic Places Conference will be held in Wabash, Indiana April 26-29. IHB's Lindsey Beckley will be in attendance with offerings from the book store as well as free resources on Indiana History. Interested in attending? Register here before March 10.




Check out Blogging Hoosier History for more in-depth posts about Indiana's past.  Follow us on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter, where you can find Hoosier history facts, stories, and resources.  Leave us comments too. We love hearing from you!

Did you miss the FALL issue? Read it here.