Thursday, June 16, 2011

Columbus, Indiana

Residential Street - Columbus, IN
Residential Street - Columbus, IN

Exploring Indiana's Historic Sites, Markers & Museums - South Central Edition
Exploring Indiana's Historic Sites,
Markers & Museums
South Central Edition
Columbus, Indiana
County - Bartholomew
Area Total - 26.4 sq mi
Land - 25.9 sq mi
Water - 0.4 sq mi
Elevation - 630 ft
Population (2010) - Total - 44,061
Time zone - Eastern
ZIP codes - 47201-47203
Area code(s) - 812

Columbus, Indiana
Potawatami and Delaware Indian villages originally occupied the land occupied by Columbus. The Treaty of St. Mary’s in 1818 had opened the area for settlement. The terms of the treaty gave the native inhabitants three years to vacate. White settlement into the area began almost immediately.
The Land
Well supplied with water, several substantial creeks and rivers flowed through the area that would become Columbus and Bartholomew County. These included Driftwood River, Flatrock River, Big Sand Creek, Little Sand Creek, Clifty Creek, Blue River, Rock Creek, Haw Creek, Duck Creek, Tough Creek, White Creek, Bear Creek, Denio’s Creek and Nineveh Creek. Most of the creeks and rivers possessed enough water flow to provide power for gristmills, a necessary structure for the pioneers. They also provided a means of transportation in a time when most goods traveled by flatboat. Roads were poor or nonexistent, thus waterways were important. The Indiana General Assembly designated the Driftwood River a public highway in 1824. Fertile soil under laid the thick forest cover, attracting settlers that wished to farm the rich, newly opened land.
General John Tipton and Luke Bonesteel purchased the land on which Columbus, Indiana sits in 1820 after visiting the area earlier that year. The men donated the land for the city shortly afterwards. The Indiana General Assembly created Bartholomew County on January 9, 1821 and appointed a commission consisting of four men to choose the site for a county seat. After inspecting the area, the men met at Tolm Parker's cabin on Haw Creek to reach a decision on February 12, 1821. The commissioners agreed upon a spot and named it Tiptonia in honor of John Tipton. They would later change the name to Columbus, in honor of the explorer, on March 20, 1821.
John Tipton (August 14, 1786 – April 5, 1839)
John was born in Sevier County, Tennessee, where his father died in an Amerindian raid. He moved to Harrison County, Indiana in 1803 and married Martha Shields. He farmed and fought natives, leading a unit of the famed Yellow Jackets during the Battle of Tippecanoe. His next military experience was commanding Fort Vallonia as major during the War of 1812. He gained election to the Indiana State House of Representatives from 1819 to 1823. During this time, he was involved in the formation of Bartholomew County and its county seat, Columbus. Tipton also served on the committee that explored the area around the White River and chose the state capitol in 1820.
John Williamson opened the first general store in the fall of 1821. Roads built from Madison on the Ohio River, Indianapolis, and Chicago on Lake Michigan spurred growth. The first gristmill began operation in 1834, adding to the blacksmiths and other tradesmen that practiced in the growing community. Flatboats took agricultural goods to the Wabash River and thence to New Orleans via the Driftwood River. By July 1844, the Madison & Indianapolis Rail Road reached Columbus, providing a cheap, fast and reliable means of transporting both freight and passengers. Industries developed and the town grew to be a city.
International Reputation
Columbus has gained an international reputation for its unique, award winning architecture due to the efforts of industrialist J. Irwin Miller, founder of Cummins Engine Company. The city possesses an impressive collection of architectural masterpieces designed some of the world's finest architects. In addition to fine buildings, visitors will find museums, great shopping, dining and a wonderful array of parks and trails. Columbus is a small city that packs a lot in its small package.
Visitors may call the visitor center, or visit the provided link, to learn all about visiting one of Indiana's finest small cities.
For a list of current lodgings and restaurants, click the Columbus link provided.
Columbus Area Visitors Center
(800) 468-6564
(812) 378-2622

Columbus Indiana Tours
Columbus offers several tours of many different themes including architectural, garden and walking tours. For more information, click the link.

Highways include:
Indiana State Road 46
Indiana State Road 11
Indiana State Road 7
US Route 31
Interstate 65

Louisville and Indiana rail line

Simmons Winery
Anderson Falls
kidscommons Children’s Museum
The Columbus Center for Visual Communications
Atterbury-Bakalar Air Museum
Freedom Field
Zaharakos Ice Cream Parlor
Bartholomew County Historical Society
Cummins Corporate Headquarters Museum
Columbus People Trails
Smith's Winery
Columbus Putt-Putt Miniature Golf
Columbus Skateland
Simply Pottery, Inc
Chapman T. Blackwell III Park
Clifty Park
Donner Park
Harrison Ridge Park
Lincoln Park
Mill Race Park
Noblitt Park
Grouse Ridge State Fishing Area
Fishing - White River -- East Fork
Columbus Woods-N-Waters Kampground
Touch the Earth Nature Preserve
Oak Knoll Golf Course
Otter Creek Golf Course
Sycamore Golf Club
Hamilton Ice Center
Clifty Covered Bridge
Charwood Corporate Suites
Ruddick-Nugent House Bed & Breakfast (and Gardens)
Inn at Irwin Gardens
© Indiana Places 2016

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