Monday, March 31, 2014

Crawfordsville's Presbyterian churches evolved over time

l to r: Center Church, Wabash Avenue Presbyterian, First Presbyterian
These images show different buildings used by the Presbyterians in Crawfordsville.

The far left image is of Center Church. Center Church was at the corner of Washington and Pike, built in 1840 and removed in 1880. The middle photograph is of the Wabash Avenue Presbyterian Church, at the corner of Wabash Avenue and Washington Street; it is still there today. The right image is of the First Presbyterian Church, which was located at the corner of Water and Pike, built in 1852 and remodeled in 1882.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

1909 Crawfordsville ... G.A.R. State Encampment

 G.A.R. (Grand Army of the Republic) State Encampment was cause for celebration in Crawfordsville, Indiana in 1909.  Here soldiers can be seen marching for the crowd.  The town worked feverishly to decorate for the event as seen in the photographs.  In the bottom photograph the Interurban tracks can be seen (along with the power line overhead).
Washington St. looking North (courthouse on East side)

Monday, March 24, 2014

Grand Army of the Republic

In May 1909 Crawfordsville hosted a large GAR encampment (Grand Army of the Republic -- a fraternal organization of Union army veterans). Parades and activities entertained up to 40,000 visitors. The downtown buildings were adorned with flags, and 7,000 light bulbs were hung among the structures to create a festive atmosphere. The visitors enjoyed the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, which was erected in 1906 to honor all veterans.

The courthouse decorated for the event in May 1909.
These band members pose during the GAR festivities.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Ben Hur Station

Notice the Court House to the south.  This photo was in 1911.
In 1907 the Indianapolis, Crawfordsville and Western Traction Company created the Ben Hur Route (in honor of Lew Wallace's novel).  The Ben Hur Station later moved to West Main Street and included a waiting room and restaurant. From the old library (currently the Carnegie Museum) the track moved east on Wabash Avenue to Grace and then ran south before turning east to Indianapolis. For more information about the Interurban read William P. Helling's Images of America: Crawfordsville.
Notice the Ben Hur Station on the right -- looking North on Washington St.

Monday, March 17, 2014

South Washington Street prior to automobiles

Horse drawn carriages and buggies grace Crawfordsville's downtown

This postcard shows Washington Street, including the Interurban track, looking south from Main Street. On the left side of the picture is W.G. Murphy's store and further south is St. Bernard's Church (where Chase Bank is currently). On the opposite side of the street, notice the steeple of Center Presbyterian Church (Wabash Avenue Presbyterian Church).  

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Crawfordsville's College Street Fire Station

This is the first motorized apparatus in city.  It was an American LaFrance engine.
The College Street Fire Station (Fire Co. No. 2) is pictured here. Per the 1917-1919 Crawfordsville City Guide the men are likely: chauffeur, F.L. (Frank) Esra; O.E. (Oscar) Farrow, captain (seated with chauffeur). Farrow's family donated the photograph; thus, he is the only confirmed person. The City Guide also lists two men as firefighters: Thomas Devitt and William Kelly. The only time frame Farrow is listed as a member of Fire Co. No. 2 is in 1917-1919. In the 1922 City Guide the College Street address is given as 909 E. College with an entirely different crew.  {Per information from Eric Frye [Crawfordsville Fire Department, 2014], Jesse Moore, Frank Holland and John Dickerson are likely the 3 men besides Farrow and Esra in the photograph}  It is also known that in June of 1917 the men were often moved between the two stations.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Bantz Drug Store

The Bantz Drug Store was at 211 East Main Street but later moved to Washington Street. In the 1963 City Directory there is a Jas A (Martha), Jas (Christine), and Jas C (June) all listed under Bantz. According to the information received, the gentleman in the photo is the James (behind the counter) who was married to June. Jimmy Parsons is the young man leaning on the counter. Further research shows Bantz in business by 1949 and well into the 1960s.
Appears to be cigarettes over Irene Grabman's head

Notice the first-aid supplies and presumably "spirits"
on back wall

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Schuyler saves Miss Wilson from Sugar Creek

A narrow escape occurred in Sugar Creek in August of 1883. Miss Nannie Wilson, 15, fell into Sugar Creek while camping with friends. Mr. Schuyler Kennedy (age 23) heard the screams of her friends and saw Ms. Wilson barely visible bobbing in the water. If not for her clothing pooling about her, she would have died. Kennedy's quick thinking by diving into the water and pulling her to shore made him a hero! Web Talbot and Edward Parker also helped rescue the young lady. In future years, Schuyler became an attorney, was partner with his brother Dumont (who also became a Crawfordsville Mayor), and passed away in 1917.

At Schuyler Kennedy's Picnic Club 23 September 1898.  Kennedy is in the background (in dark suit).

Row 1: Laura Kennedy, Louise Keegan, Mame (Mary Elizabeth) Kennedy, Carrie Krout, Emily Kennedy, Nellie Brown
Row 2: Mrs. Peter S. Kennedy, Bettie Kennedy, Mrs. T.D. Brown, Roberta Krout, Mrs. Jane Keeney
Row 3 Standing: Mrs. Jonathan L. Pursel, Mrs. Keegan, S. C. (Schuyler) Kennedy, and Matie Kenney

Monday, March 3, 2014

Interurban track at the turn of the century

The Indianapolis, Crawfordsville, and Western Interurban Line (1906-1907, Bass Photos) is being built by what is now the Carnegie Museum (it was the Carnegie library at the time). This photograph is at the corner of Wabash (looking east) and Washington Streets. Look at how the scenery has altered. You can see the church steeple, and the house on the Water Street corner seems to be the same as present day.  Notice the street light in the top of the photograph and the horse buggy in front of the museum (library).