Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Fireman Williams is killed by incoming Northwestern Car

On August 7, 1914 at 12:15 p.m. the east-end fire wagon was attempting to get to a grass fire by the Monon Tracks when the Northwestern Traction Car struck the back side of the wagon, hurling it 15 feet. Fire Chief John Hurley (headquartered at the central station) had jumped on the wagon as it was going past his home. Chief Hurley was thrown 20 yards from the collision, suffering a broken shoulder and a badly bruised body. Unfortunately, Clarence Williams (47-year old fireman) was standing on the back steps of the wagon and did not survive; six children (ages 1-19) and a widow were left behind. The other two firemen involved were driver Frank Esra and fireman Otis Stephens. Esra was upset because he had not heard the gong of the traction car's approach.

After the accident, 7 August 1914
Otis Stephens is the 2nd fireman from the left (standing)

The East Fire Station in 1914 (College Street)

Monday, April 28, 2014

James C. Knox -- one of Ladoga's finest

Captain James. C. Knox was born near Ladoga on 29 November 1841 and entered the Civil War as a drummer boy for "Colonel" Lew Wallace. In the 58th regiment he became a first lieutenant and then was part of Colonel Gray's Calvary regiment. Knox spent 11 months at Macon, Georgia, as a prisoner of war after being captured at Varnel Station while fighting 9 May 1864. After returning to Ladoga, Knox was listed as a postmaster, traveled for S.H. Gregg & Labaree & Co. (a coffee & tea house in New York City). Eventually, Knox purchased a hardware store from his partners and was in business for 23 years. In June1868 Emma Anderson wed Knox. During these years, Captain Knox was also a member of the Knights of Phythias, Masons, Loyal Legion, Knights of Templar, Eastern Star, and G.A.R.  In 1905 he was joint representative for Hamilton, Madison, Boone, and Montgomery Counties as part of the "shoe-string district." The Crawfordsville Daily Journal stated Knox's funeral was one of the best attended funerals Ladoga had ever seen.
James. C. Knox

Knox home in Ladoga, Indiana

Friday, April 25, 2014

Old Crawfordsville and other community churches featured

The Reference and Local History Department (second floor of the library) recently created a display of community churches. Records are showcased from as early as 1820 (Ladoga Christian Church Elders Transactions), Haw Creek (1833), Union Presbyterian (1834), and many others. Many of the churches exhibited no longer exist, but often newer buildings were erected on the same site. There are also some "old" ministers/reverends/pastors in the display. Dr. Hugh T. Gary, for example, kept a detailed record in the 1890s and even listed his marriage expenses (while serving in Crawfordsville).

Center Church is shown here, highlighted
in the display

Dr. Hugh T. Gary is displayed, along with his wife.
There are accounts of his wedding in his personal ledger.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Dirt road becomes State Highway ...

Anyone have a guess of where this road is located?

Clue 1: If you grew up south of Crawfordsville you might have a guess.
The big barn is on the West side of the road now.

Clue 2: Montgomery County teachers currently live in this home (2014)

Clue 3 ... Scott Township

Jerry and Jennifer Albaugh Long live in this (home) area now; 231 South is the road.
It is amazing how many hundreds of cars travel this road in today's world...but, how tranquil the thoroughfare was in this era!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Laborers at Crawfordsville Electric in 1910

A new donation arrived recently with some unseen images of Crawfordsville. In the photo below, these men can be seen next to a train and possibly helping to "lay" more track. During this time the electric company was also building a smoke stack (seen in the lower picture) and retaining wall. Sugar Creek is in the background. Otis Stephens was one of the workers, but is not pictured here.
If you recognize anyone, please call the Reference Dept. 362-2242 x 117
Workers as they build smokestack at the electric company

Special thanks to Dave Stephens for providing the pictures.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Alamo Baseball Camp

Roscoe Hudson hosted a memorial baseball camp in honor of his son Jack Hudson (1937 Alamo graduate) who served in WWII. The Alamo Baseball Camp was located south of Alamo on Hudson's farm.
Unfortunately, the year and players are unidentified.

Thanks to Edith Rush for the photographs.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Knights of Columbus 25th Anniversary

In the Fall of 1946 the Knights of Columbus celebrated 25 years!  The "old" St. Bernard's church is seen behind (left to right) Willie Brennan, Leonard Winchell, Francis Fink and Chic (Harry) Holland.
Louise Winchell provided the photograph.
If anyone else has photos showing old buildings please let us know.

(765) 362-2242 x 117 is the reference desk contact number - we would love to scan your photographs.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Manson Brothers Provisions

Mahlon F. (Fred) Manson, in vest,
and Uncle Arthur H. Manson in doorway

Mahlon F. (Fred) Manson and his brother William Nelson Manson operated the Manson Brothers Provisions (grocery) store. The store was in more than one location, at one time being on the SE corner of Green and Market. The store was noted for providing "fancy" (anything canned) groceries. Mahlon F. was also president of The Oak Hill Cemetery and Vice President of the Crawfordsville Casket Company.
406 West Market (Family Video area today ) -- Mahlon F's residence

Mahlon F. (Fred) and William (along with several other siblings) descended from Mahlon D. Manson who was a General in the Civil War; taught in Montgomery County; was a physician, politician, and druggist.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Cummings Auto, c. 1914

Our image collection is extensive, but  there is so much of our county's history for which we have no photographs. However, we recently received a photograph taken in the early 20th century -- from an angle we have not seen before. This photograph looks west on Pike Street in downtown Crawfordsville. The intersection of Washington Street is in the background, just beyond the church (St. Bernard's), where Chase Bank stands now. The photograph features Cummings Auto Company.

The photograph was donated to CDPL by Randy Cummings. Forest M. Cummings had written on the back of this photograph: "115 East Pike Street, Crawfordsville, Indiana. My grandfather, Forest Franklin Cummings seated in car on the right, smoking cigarettes. 1914. Note license plate on left."

View other photographs from this donation.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

1865 Crawfordsville

Ever wonder what Crawfordsville looked like during the Civil War? Well, look no further! This scene is looking west on Main Street (it was called Vernon Street at the time) at the Washington Street intersection.  The bottom-right corner of the image with the fencing is where the courthouse was located. The current courthouse was later built on this same site (1876). The Crawfordsville Journal building (four stories, erected in 1836) held classes for Wabash College in 1838-1839 because Wabash's lone building was destroyed by a fire. Other business are located along Main Street (merchant, tailor, bakery).  Homes can also be seen further west on Main Street.
The second Montgomery County Courthouse (shown here)
was replaced by 1875 with the current building
(the first courthouse was a cabin).

Monday, April 7, 2014

Crawfordsville courthouse cornerstone and Paul Hughes

Mr. Paul Hughes (in photo -- original a ferrotype [tintype]) submitted 20 bread checks (small coins) in the current courthouse cornerstone that was dedicated 5 May 1875. This cornerstone box was recovered on 13 November 1986.

Photo in cornerstone
The bread checks were given as change for the purchase of groceries so the customer would frequent the store again when shopping. The check would purchase one loaf of bread -- only at Hughes Grocery. Hughes owned $9,000.00 worth of real estate in the 1870 census, and his personal estate was valued at $3,000.

A book detailing items found in the cornerstone can be checked out at the Crawfordsville library: Montgomery County Courthouse by Rebecca L. Neideffer.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Ladoga's Washington Street in 1892

Jane Lyle allowed CDPL to digitize this postcard; notice the amazing architecture of the buildings.

Businesses on Ladoga's Washington Street in 1892 were Clark and Carroll Harness, a bakery, a monument company (notice the tombstone on the sidewalk), a milliner (usually a hat maker, but could have provided any clothing), and a clothing store.

Can anyone identify the young boy driving the team?