Friday, November 12, 2010

Montgomery County Courthouse, c. 1900

A generous donation a few days ago brought several more important artifacts to our Local History collection. One particularly interesting item was a photograph taken in 1900, from the corner of Main and Washington Streets. The view is looking toward the courthouse, which was completed some 25 years earlier. The buildings seen in this phootgraph still stand today -- but the courthouse no longer has its tower. (If you are wondering where the Veterans monument is, remember that is was not erected until 1906.) This rare view of downtown Crawfordsville at the beginning of the 20th century shows a much simpler life. Automobiles existed -- but much transportation was still done with horses. And the streets are not yet paved! Notice the board walkways that cross both Washington and Main Streets. The woman crossing Washington Street toward the courthouse would have certainly appreciated the opportunity to keep her dress from being soild by the dirt in the street.

Compare the 1900 scene with one taken near the same spot in 1913. The horse carriages you see were merely for a parade. If you look more closley, you can see parked automobiles on the paved streets. Notice also the streetcar tracks that are visible along Main street, south of the courthouse. Crawfordsville sure had changed in a decade!

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