Thursday, March 31, 2016

A Visit to Harmonie State Park, Indiana

On the Banks of the Wabash  -Harmonie State Park
On the Banks of the Wabash  -Harmonie State Park 
A Visit to Harmonie State Park, Indiana
A Visit to Harmonie State Park, Indiana

On the Banks of the Wabash  -Harmonie State Park 

Harmonie State Park
Harmonie State Park provides a family friendly vacation destination with great views of the Wabash River, great hiking and wonderful riverside picnicking. An important part of Indiana history, the town of Harmony, Indiana, is just a short distance away.
The Wabash River
The name Wabash derives from the Shawnee word "waapaahšiiki." The word means, "It shines white," in that language. The name is in reference to the river's limestone bottom. The bottom shone white in the sunlight in the time that the Shawnee roamed the lands surrounding the river. Since then, the river has silted up and in most places; the river bottom no longer "shines white." The French, who were the first European settlers in Indiana, called it the "Ouabache." The English spelling became Wabash, the name used today. The Wabash is just a little over five hundred miles long, beginning in Ohio near a little town called Fort Recovery.
Camping
The campground has 200 electrical sites. Twenty of these sites have 50-amp electrical service. All remaining sites have 30-amp. The campground features five modern comfort stations available. One of these is heated during the winter months.
Family Cabins At Harmonie State Park
Family Cabins At Harmonie State Park
Family Cabins At Harmonie State Park
Harmonie State Park has eleven modern cabins. The cabins have air conditioning and electric heat. Two cabins are ADA accessible. Wood stoves are available to use from October to April. Each cabin has an outdoor charcoal grill.
Hiking at Harmonie State Park
Hiking at Harmonie State Park

Hiking at Harmonie State Park
Harmonie State Park has eight miles of easy to moderate hiking trails.
Mountain Biking
Harmonie State Park has approximately three miles of bike trails that connect the campground and swimming pool. One mile of trail runs through woodlands. The remaining two miles travel adjacent to the park's roadway.
Historic New Harmony - Roofless Church
Historic New Harmony - Roofless Church
Historic New Harmony
History buffs will enjoy nearby Historic New Harmony. This fascinating village provides a unique look into two experiments in communal living. Both occurred early in Indiana history here, in New Harmony. The Rappites and Harmonites both tried to establish communal living at New Harmony. Neither community succeeded in doing this. However, they For more information about New Harmony, read the author's book:
Purchase the Book
A Visit to Harmonie State Park, Indiana
The links provided below take readers to the various online retailers that sell the book. These include Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Google Play and CreateSpace. Both softbound and ebook versions available.
Indiana State Park Travel Guide Series
The Indiana State Park Travel Guide Series will encompass all the family friendly Indiana State Parks. Indiana’s State Park system is one of the finest in the United States. With great hiking trails, history, and nature, there is something for everyone at an Indiana State Park.
© Mossy Feet Books 2016

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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

A Visit to the Land of Lincoln, Indiana

A Visit to the Land of Lincoln, Indiana
A Visit to the Land of Lincoln, Indiana
A Visit to the Land of Lincoln, Indiana















History of the Park
The 1700-acre Lincoln State Park was established in 1932 to honor Abraham Lincoln's mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln, and to preserve the area Lincoln lived as a child. Nancy Hanks Lincoln's grave is in the Lincoln Boyhood Memorial, adjacent to the park. This was during the Great Depression, thus many of the structures in the park and the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built some of the trails. The park and surrounding area include many of the places important to a young Abraham Lincoln as he grew into a man.


Lincoln's Boyhood in Indiana
The Lincoln family moved to Indiana in 1816 from Kentucky after Abraham's father Thomas Lincoln lost his land due to faulty land titles. After learning that Indiana had better land title laws, Thomas moved the family north of the Ohio River to Indiana. The Lincolns were also strongly opposed to slavery. Kentucky was a slave state, Indiana a free state, so Thomas chose Indiana.
Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial
The National Memorial includes four major features, the museum, Nancy Hanks Lincoln's grave, the Pioneer Village and the Trail of Twelve Stones. Visitors can hike to the Memorial from Lincoln State Park or drive. The Memorial is across Indiana State Road 162 from Lincoln State Park.
The Museum
Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial Museum
Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial Museum
The museum includes two meeting rooms and a collection of artifacts, documents and memorabilia from the Lincoln family. Visitors will find an informational desk staffed by park rangers who can answer a wide range of questions about the museum, the Lincolns and the surrounding area.
Grave of Nancy Hanks Lincoln
About two years after the move to Indiana, Nancy Hanks Lincoln died of "milk sickness." Cattle grazing on a local plant, white snakeroot, cause milk sickness. White snakeroot contains a poison that can sicken or kill anyone that drinks the milk.
Pioneer Village
Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial Pioneer Village
Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial Pioneer Village
Near the Memorial, visitors will find a Pioneer Farmstead. It depicts life during the time the Thomas Lincoln and his family lived here. During the summer months, actors staff this farm. They grow crops, tend livestock and perform household chores the same way the Lincolns and their neighbors did a century and a half ago. Archeologists have also preserved the foundation and chimney of Thomas Lincoln's cabin nearby.
Trail of Twelve Stones
Trail of Twelve Stones
Trail of Twelve Stones
The Trail of Twelve Stones forms a connecting trail between the Thomas Lincoln home site, where Abraham Lincoln grew up, with the cemetery that holds the remains of his mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln. You can walk the Trail of Twelve Stones from either direction. It connects with the main trail just before it passes the Pioneer Cemetery if walking from the Lincoln Boyhood Memorial. It is best to walk it from the direction of the Pioneer Farmstead, as the story begins on that end. The stones along this short trail are all from places instrumental in the life of Abraham Lincoln, from a chimney stone from the cabin where he was born in Kentucky, to a stone from his tomb in Springfield, Illinois.
Hiking at Lincoln State Park
The eleven miles of hiking trails offer a variety of habitat. These habitats include lakefront hiking and deep forestland. Lake Lincoln has a sand beach where swimmers may bask in the sun and a boat rental for those wishing to fish or just tool around the lake. Some of the trails at Lincoln State Park hug the Lincoln Lake shore and others wend their way through the rich, southern Indiana forests, tracing the steps that Lincoln walked as a boy.
Camping at Lincoln State Park
The campground is equipped with flush toilets, hot water and showers. Occupancy is limited to fourteen consecutive nights. The sites will accommodate trailers.
Other Activities at Lincoln State Park
In addition to exploring the historical aspects of Abraham Lincoln's boyhood, visitors to Lincoln State Park can hike the trails, swim in the lake at the beach, and rent a canoe or rowboat and picnic. Families will find playgrounds and fields for outdoor games. Visitors can also attend plays about Lincoln's boyhood at the Lincoln Amphitheatre located in the park.
Lincoln Amphitheatre
Lincoln Amphitheatre
Other Attractions
Lincoln State Park is near the amusement park Holiday World, St. Meinrad Arch abbey and the beautiful Ohio River Scenic Byway. Santa Clause Indiana is also nearby, offering a Christmas theme year round with its many shops and activities. Wine lovers will also find two wineries tucked into the southern Indiana hills.
Lincoln State Park
P.O. Box 216
Lincoln City, IN 47552
(812) 937-4710
Mapping Address:
Indiana 162
Lincoln City, IN 47552



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A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park

A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park 
A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park
A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park 
Falls of the Ohio State Park
This, the smallest Indiana State Park, is part of the Ohio National Wildlife Conservation Area. The park resides in the town of Clarksville, Indiana just across the river from Louisville, Kentucky. The State of Indiana established the Falls of the Ohio State Park to preserve the fossil beds that lay exposed on the exposed riverbed. Falls of the Ohio Visitor Center The visitor center is the best place to begin a visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park. The Visitor Center occupies the site of the former Camp Joe Holt, a Union Camp during the American Civil War. The camp served as a major troop staging area for Union troops invading the Confederate States of America. Unlike other State Parks, Falls of the Ohio is not accessible using the State Park Pass. The fees serve to reimburse the City of Clarksville for building the Visitor Center.

Falls of the Ohio State Park Visitor Center
The Visitor Center at Falls of the Ohio State Park contains scores of fossils, highlighted by the massive mammoth skeleton mounted in the main entrance. The fossils include examples of fossils found in the fossil beds on the grounds and in southern Indiana.
Visitor Center Exhibits - Falls of the Ohio State Park
Visitor Center Exhibits - Falls of the Ohio State Park
The Interpretive Center at Falls of the Ohio is a family friendly facility. It displays a plethora of information about the history of the river area. The Falls area includes the Indiana towns of Clarksville, New Albany, Jeffersonville, and Louisville, Kentucky across the river. This area is rich in history. Before the installation of the locks, riverboats had to stop at the Falls. The passengers and cargo had to be portaged around them. The cities played an important role in this process.




Jeffersonville blossomed into an important riverboat-building center and rail hub. The area served an important role during the Civil War. Terry Chase, a well-established exhibit developer designed the Visitor Center with its many easy to understand exhibits in 1990.
Falls of the Ohio State Park Fossil Beds
Falls of the Ohio State Park Fossil Beds

Riverbed Exposed - Fossil Beds
A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park
A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park
The 390-million-year-old fossil beds at Falls of the Ohio State Park are among the largest, naturally exposed, Devonian fossil beds in the world. There is a trail here, The Woodland Loop Trail, which has ten new stainless steel markers denoting the plant life of the trails completed by area Eagle Scouts. The visitor may tour at will or take a guided tour. Careful examination of the riverbed will reward the visitor with many unusual fossils. State Law forbids collecting the fossils. Take only pictures. The best time to visit is from August to early November when the river levels are traditionally low. The Falls of the Ohio no longer exist, hidden under the McAlpine dam, but the exposed fossil beds provide a fascinating window into the past.

A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park

A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park will guide the visitor to Falls of the Ohio State Park on their visit to this wonderful area. In addition to the Park, visitors will find many other attractions in one of Indiana's earliest settled areas. Lewis and Clark set out on their renowned journey to the northwest coast from the Falls of the Ohio area. Visitors can visit George Rogers Clark's home site, where the trek started, as well as other fun places to visit in Clark and Floyd counties.

George Rogers Clark Home Site - Falls of the Ohio State Park
George Rogers Clark Home Site - Falls of the Ohio State Park
 The book Falls of the Ohio State Park is part of the Indiana State Park Travel Guide Series. This series will encompass all the family friendly Indiana State Parks. Indiana’s State Park system is one of the finest in the United States. With great hiking trails, history, and nature, there is something for everyone at an Indiana State Park. A Visit to Falls of the Ohio State Park Falls of the Ohio State Park 201 W Riverside Dr. Clarksville, IN 47129 Area: 165 acres (67 acres) Phone: (812) 280-9970
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A Visit to Pokagon State Park, Indiana

Lake James - Pokagon State Park
A Visit to Pokagon State Park, Indiana
Nestled in northern Indiana's lake country, Pokagon State Park has everything you would expect from an Indiana State Park.  It also boasts some extras you might not expect. This Indiana State Park travel guide describes all the amenities of this popular state park. It also includes many of the wonderful attractions of Angola and Steuben County, Indiana. It also provides information about nearby Trine State Recreation Area. Pokagon State Park is also just a short distance from Nappanee, Indiana. Nappanee is the heart of the northern Indiana Amish country.
Potawatamie Inn - Pokagon State Park
Potawatamie Inn
Potawatamie Inn is a large complex. It has many small nooks tucked away in odd places to relax with a book or a jigsaw puzzle, which all the inns have in abundance. Potawatomi is a one level facility. It has a swimming pool, dining room, great room with fireplace, gift shop and many other amenities. There is free wireless internet access in all the rooms and public areas.
Pokagon State Park Meeting and Conference Facilities
The resort at Pokagon State Park consists of 11,000 square feet spread out in nine meeting room. This conference center is the most popular resort in the Indiana State Park system. The Indiana State Park resort system is among the busiest state park system in the United States. Nine suites join the 137 guest rooms in the inn. The Inn's restaurant provides in house catering for banquets, conferences and other events.
Potawatomi Inn
6 Lane 100A Lake James
Angola, IN 46703
260-833-1077

Lake James - Pokagon State Park
Lake James - Pokagon State Park
Lake James
This natural lake of 1,200 acres is Indiana's fourth largest natural glacial lake. James Watson Riley surveyed the area in 1831 a year after the native Potawotomi Indians left the area. Many think he named it after the males in his family named James, of which there were three. His father, he and a son all bore the first name, James.  The lake includes three sections, the First, Second and Third Basins. Pokagon State Park borders all three sections, plus Snow Lake to the north, which connects to Lake James.
Camping - Cabins
Pokagon State Park has the full range of camping facilities available at Indiana State Parks. The facilities include:
Full Service Campground
Youth Campground
Group Campground
Full Service Campground
The campground is on the north side of the park just east of the Upper Basin of Lake James. There are 200 electric sites and 73 non-electric sites. The campground facilities include a picnic and fire ring at each site. Flush toilets, hot water and shower facilities located at convenient spots around the campground. There is also a dumping station. Reservations are available through the Central Reservation System.
Historic Cabins
Pokagon State Park offers seven historic cabins, each with a pair of double beds. Each rustic historic cabin at the park includes air conditioning, heat and a television. Maid service is also available daily.
Cabin Suites
Cabins suites at Pokagon State Park can sleep up to five people. The park offers four Cabin suites for overnight stays. Each cabin includes two queen beds and a single bed, plus a separate living room and dining room. Also, a cabin suite includes a coffee maker, microwave, compact refrigerator, two televisions, a table and chairs, and a writing desk
Hiking Trails - Pokagon State Park
Hiking Trails - Pokagon State Park
Hiking
Hiking Trails at Pokagon State Park
NOTE Link trails to my corresponding narrative about my hike
Pokagon State Park has nine marked hiking trails that total eleven miles. The trails range from easy to moderate with most accessible from the Inn and campground.
Toboggan Run - Pokagon State Park
Toboggan Run - Pokagon State Park
Toboggan Run
The toboggans Run allows riders to race down the hill for over 1700 feet on the refrigerated tracks. There are twin tracks, so two toboggans can run at a time. the toboggan Run has about 90,000 riders during the season. It features a ninety-foot drop and takes about forty seconds to complete. The highest recorded speed is forty-two miles per hour. The run is close to the inn. There is a heated refreshment building with hot drinks, sandwiches and snacks. Observers can sit inside watching the toboggans race downhill through the windows.
 Skiing and Winter Sports
In addition to the toboggan run, other winter activities at Pokagon include sledding; ice skating, cross-country skiing (rental), camping and ice fishing.

Pokagon State Park  Saddle Barn
Pokagon State Park  Saddle Barn
Saddle Horses
Pokagon's saddle barn is open seasonally and offers rental horses and guided horse trail rides. There are hayrides on designated evenings. The bridle trail is two miles long and there is a shorter pony trail. There is no day use area for horses at this park.

Fishing
Lake James provides a wonderful place to fish, either from the bank or a boat. There is no public boat access at the park. However,  visitors may fish from the fishing dock, from the bank or a rented boat available at the boat rental station.
Pokagon State Park Swimming
Beach access at Pokagon State Park is free, but visitors do need to pay a gate fee to get in the park. There is a bathhouse with showers. The beach may close late in the season. It may also close when there is no lifeguard available to staff it. The beach opens the Saturday before Memorial Day and closed after Labor Day.
Picnic Shelters And Recreation Buildings
Pokagon State Park has picnic areas and shelters scattered around the park. Visitors may rent some of these shelters for family reunions, company functions, etc. To rent, visit this link.
Pokagon State Park offers a stunning variety of family friendly activities that range far beyond the scope of this article. For more information about the  park and nearby Trine State Recreation Area, see the author's book, listed below. The book also includes several nearby attractions like Beechwood Nature Preserve and Marsh Lake Wildlife Refuge.
Nestled in northern Indiana's lake country, Pokagon State Park has everything you would expect from an Indiana State Park.  It also boasts some extras you might not expect. This Indiana State Park travel guide describes all the amenities of this popular state park. It also includes many of the wonderful attractions of Angola and Steuben County, Indiana. It also provides information about nearby Trine State Recreation Area. Pokagon State Park is also just a short distance from Nappanee, Indiana. Nappanee is the heart of the northern Indiana Amish country.


A Visit to Pokagon State Park, Indiana
A Visit to Pokagon State Park, Indiana
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Southeast Indiana Historical Marker - Brigadier General CSA Francis Asbury Shoup

Title of Marker:
Brigadier General CSA Francis Asbury Shoup
Location:
Conwell Cemetery, State Rd. 121, Laurel (Franklin County, Indiana) Just outside of Laurel on the northwest side, just off the highway.
Installed by:
2006 Indiana Historical Bureau, Franklin County Historical Society, and Indiana Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans
Marker ID #:
24.2006.1
Marker Text:
Side One
Remembered for service in Confederate States of America army, 1861-1865, and "Shoupade" fortification design; fought in battles of Shiloh, Vicksburg, and Atlanta. Advocated recruitment of African Americans for CSA army. After the war, he was a university professor, published author, and Episcopal rector.
Side two:
Born near present-day Laurel 1834. Attended Indiana Asbury University, Greencastle. Graduated 1855 from United States Military Academy at West Point. Served in Federal army 1855-1860; resigned to pursue law career. In Indianapolis circa 1860. Died 1896; buried at Sewanee University Cemetery, Tennessee.

Brief History
Brigadier General CSA Francis Asbury Shoup (March 22, 1834 – September 4, 1896)
The eldest of nine children born to George Grove Shoup and Jane Shoup near Laurel, Indiana, Francis attended Indiana Asbury University in Greencastle, Indiana. After graduation, he attended the United States Military Academy. As a member of the First United States Artillery, he fought in the Seminole Wars in Florida. He retired from the Army on January 10, 1860 to pursue a law career in Indianapolis. He enlisted in the local militia. When the Civil War broke out in 1861 the members of the militia presented him with a set of revolvers with holsters and trappings. They assumed he would join the Union Army as an officer and the weapons they gave him befitted a mounted officer.
Joining the Confederacy
He astounded them by declaring he had "aristocratic inclinations and admiration for the South," he instead traveled to St. Augustine, Florida and enlisted in the Confederate Army. The Florida governor commissioned him as a Lieutenant. He served at the Battle of Shiloh and Battle of Prairie Grove, from which he emerged as a brigadier general. While serving at Vicksburg the Union Army captured him. Among the Union troops, he met some of his former militia members from Indiana. They spurned him. The Union Army paroled him and he went to fight in the Battle of Atlanta.
Shoupades
At the conclusion of that battle, the Confederate Army charged him with building a series of fortifications along the Chattahoochee River. He built thirty-six forts of his own design. Called Shoupades, these arrowhead shaped forts formed an impregnable line along the river. Using 1000 slaves as laborers, Shoup built the line of forts to stop the advance of General Tecumseh Sherman. Sherman did attack them. He decided further attacks against them would be futile, and using a classic flanking maneuver, went around them and attacked elsewhere.
From the author's book:
Exploring Indiana's Historic Sites, Markers & Museums - South East Edition




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This Week in Indiana History - March 29, 1984 NFL Colts Arrive in Indianapolis

This Week in Indiana History - March 29, 1984 NFL Colts Arrive in Indianapolis
This Week in Indiana History
March 29, 1984 NFL Colts Arrive in Indianapolis
This Week in Indiana History - March 29, 1984 NFL Colts Arrive in Indianapolis
March 29, 1984 NFL Colts Arrive in Indianapolis
Two long-term events came together in the early morning hours of March 29, 1984 when the Mayflower vans arrived in downtown Indianapolis, Indiana bringing with them the city's long time sought after NFL franchise. The city of Indianapolis' long-term program of downtown revitalization let to the construction of a new stadium in 1983. Robert Irsay, owner of the Baltimore Colts, had held long running negotiations with the city of Baltimore for a new stadium which had not borne fruit. When the state of Maryland threatened to take his team, Irsay loaded his team's equipment on fifteen Mayflower trucks on the night of March 28, 1984 and moved it out of the state.
Indianapolis Renewal
Downtown revitalization for Indianapolis began under the mayor ship of Richard Lugar and continued under his successor William Hudnut. The program kicked off with the opening of a new home for the Indiana Pacers in 1974, Market Square Arena. Between 1974 and 1990 Indianapolis invested about three billion dollars in the downtown area, culminating with the opening of Circle Centre Mall in 1994. To help bolster the city's growing convention business, the city had constructed a new convention center in 1972. To boost its 1,300,000 square feet of convention space, the city constructed the Hoosier Dome in 1983. The Hoosier Dome, later renamed the RCA Dome, connected with the convention center to form one huge convention complex. The secondary purpose of the Hoosier Dome was to attract an NFL franchise.
Irsay and Baltimore Spat
Problems between the Colts and Baltimore had begun in 1972 under then owner Carroll Rosenbloom. Baltimore had announced it would increase the stadium rental fees they charged the Colts. Rosenbloom responded by threatening to move the team if the city did not make revenue enhancing improvements to the stadium. The spat continued after Irsay purchased the team in 1972. Study followed study and proposal followed proposal. Irsay had negotiated with several cities to move the team, including Indianapolis. On March 2, 1984 the NFL voted to allow Irsay to move the team anywhere he wanted. On March 27, 1984 the Maryland Senate passed a bill that would allow Baltimore to seize the team from Irsay. On March 28 Irsay phoned Indianapolis Mayor William Hudnut. The two men finalized a deal. Hudnut phoned Mayflower, which is based in Indiana, and asked the company to help. The owner of the company, a personal friend of the Mayor, complied with the request. During the late night and early morning hours fifteen trucks loaded the equipment and left by different routes to Indiana. The next day the Maryland House of Representatives passed the bill authorizing the use of eminent domain to seize the Colts and the governor signed the bill. But the Colts were gone and there was nothing in Maryland to seize.




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Saturday, March 26, 2016

Southeast Indiana Historical Marker - Hannah Toliver

Exploring Indiana's Historic Sites, Markers & Museums - South East Edition
Exploring Indiana's Historic Sites, Markers & MuseumsSouth East Edition
Title of Marker:
Hannah Toliver
Location:
Corner of Pearl Street and Riverside Drive, Jeffersonville (Clark County, Indiana)
Installed by:
2008 Indiana Historical Bureau, City of Jeffersonville and Division of Historic Preservation & Archaeology, IDNR
Marker ID #: 
10.2008.1
Marker Text: 
Side one:
Emancipation Proclamation (1863) did not free slaves in Kentucky. In April 1864, Hannah Toliver, a free black woman living in Jeffersonville, was arrested for aiding a fugitive slave from Kentucky. In May, she was convicted and sentenced to seven years in the Kentucky Penitentiary; She was pardoned January 5, 1865 and returned to Jeffersonville.
Side two:
Toliver and other blacks risked their freedom aiding fugitives. Slavery in U.S. abolished December 1865. The Underground Railroad refers to a widespread network of diverse people in the nineteenth century who aided slaves escaping to freedom from the southern U.S.

Brief History
Hanna Toliver was part of a vast network of people that worked to help slaves escape bondage in the south. President Abraham Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. This proclamation did not help slaves in states that did not secede. Kentucky had not seceded, but had declared its neutrality in the conflict.
Underground Railroad in Indiana
The Underground Railroad was a vast network of people in the North and South who aided fugitive slaves in their flight from slavery. In Indiana, the route stretched from communities on the Ohio River to the Michigan border. From Michigan, the fugitives fled to Canada and freedom. Hanna Toliver was part of the network of free blacks and whites that risked their lives and freedom by helping the fugitive slaves escape bondage. Forefronts in this movement were groups like the American Colonization Society and the Quakers. Many of these groups used agents to go south of the Ohio River to aid slaves wishing to flee. Hanna was performing this service in Kentucky when arrested for "enticing a slave."
Kentucky Neutrality
Kentucky at the beginning of the Civil War was in a tenuous situation. It was a slave state with strong southern ties. It was also a Unionist state that believed strongly in the Constitution. Its leaders realized that, as it was geographically in an important strategic location, much of the fighting would occur there. Both sides would need to send armies through Kentucky to get to their opponent. Kentucky officials tried to minimize the damage to their state by not taking sides. Early in 1861, they declared neutrality. They would contribute neither troops nor aid to either side. It was a policy doomed to fail. Much of the early fighting did take place there, killing many Kentuckians and destroying much property.
Emancipation Proclamation
President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863. The Proclamation was limited in what it did. It only freed slaves in states deemed in rebellion. In addition, it only freed slaves still in Confederate territory. It did not free slaves in areas under control of the Union Army, nor did it free slaves in neutral states like Kentucky. Lincoln did not believe he was constitutionally entitled to free all the slaves. He believed that only Congress could to that through legislation or amending the Constitution. Thus, slaves remained slaves in the neutral states until the Thirteenth Amendment banned it.
Hanna Toliver
Hanna Toliver was a free black that lived in Jeffersonville, Indiana. Kentucky officials arrested Hanna Toliver in April 1864 as she was helping a slave held by William Murphy escape. Since it was against Kentucky law to assist escaping slaves, they tried and convicted her. She was sentenced to seven years in jail. Kentucky Governor Thomas Bramlette pardoned her on January 5, 1865 after Congress passed the Thirteenth Amendment in January 1865. She returned to Jeffersonville.
Exploring Indiana's Historic Sites, Markers & Museums - South East Edition

This Week in Indiana History -March 20, 1954 - Milan Miracle - Wins State Basketball Championship

A Day in Indiana History - March

March 20, 1954 - Milan Miracle - Wins State Basketball Championship
Capping of a series of strong basketball teams over a number of years,tiny Milan, Indiana defeated basketball giant Muncie Central in a true Hoosier Barn Burner with a last second, top of the key shot. Milan had defeated Muncie Central 32 - 30.
Strong Teams

Sports writers have written reams about the Milan Miracle of 1954 and the on court heroics have inspired a major Hollywood movie starring Gene Hackman. The Milan Miracle was not the anomaly suggested in the movie. Milan had a history of strong basketball teams and a tradition of beating teams from bigger schools. They had to; they were one of the smallest teams in the Ripley County Sectional and the second strongest team in the Ripley County Sectional in the early 1950's. Neighboring Batesville had advanced to the final game of the Semi-State in 1951 and Milan had gotten to the State Championship in 1953, losing in the semi-final contest. the 1954 team contained all the 1953 players, plus the previous year's experience in the state championships. Muncie Central was a basketball powerhouse, having won four state championships, the last one in 1952. Thus, when Bobby Plump lined up and took that shot from the top of the key, the swish of the net can still be heard decades later.
From the author's book:

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Saturday, March 19, 2016

The Week in Indiana History - March 16, 1894 - Traditional First Indiana Basketball Game

A Day in Indiana History - March
March 16, 1894 - Traditional First Indiana Basketball Game 
The traditional first basketball game held in Indiana was between the Crawfordsville and Lafayette YMCA's after Nicholas C. McCay introduced the game to Indiana. Recent research by blogger S. Chandler Lighty has uncovered earlier reports of basketball in Indiana.
Nicholas C. McCay (1860 - ?)
A native if Ireland, McCay (Often McKay) immigrated to the United States in 1881. McCay was a Presbyterian minister that became an enthusiast of the game, which he learned of the game while at the International YMCA Training School in Springfield. McCay moved to Indiana around and became secretary of the YMCA in Crawfordsville. He brought his knowledge and enthusiasm for the game with him.
The Game
The teams played the game at the Terminal Building, 100 West Main St., in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Crawfordsville won that game 45-21. The Terminal building in Crawfordsville no longer stands.
Earlier Reported Games
According to Lighty's research, YMCA Athletic Director William A. McCulloch organized a four-team league in Indianapolis and played the first exhibition game in this league between the Active, Rex, Aletta and the US Clubs on March 30, 1893. The writer of the story reported that basketball “has taken hold here and is awakening interest and promises to become the all-around game for general fun in the future.” He found reports of earlier games than that, the earliest in Evansville, Indiana in November 1892. There is more research by other basketball historians that confirm that the first game did not occur in Crawfordsville. However, tradition is hard to dispute and most people hold to the tradition of Crawfordsville being the first basketball game in Indiana. Whatever the truth is, the new game caught on and spread rapidly throughout the state.
S. Chandler Lighty
To learn more of Lighty's research, click this link.
To learn more about basketball in Indiana, visit the Indiana Basketball Heritage Trail.
bhp58@yahoo.com
765-225-1574
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Sunday, March 13, 2016

This Week in Indiana History - March 1, 1784 - Virginia Cedes Claim to Virginia Territory to United States

March 1, 1784 - Virginia Cedes Claim to Virginia Territory to United States
After a legal tug of war and many compromises, Virginia ceded the lands that became the Northwest Territory to the United States. The struggle had imperiled the ratification of the Articles of Confederation and threatened to turn the newly independent colonies into a struggle for land and power. Because of the cession, Maryland became the thirteenth state to ratify the Confederation and set the stage for Congress to form the Northwest Territory and eventual admittance of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota as states on equal footing with the original thirteen states.
Maryland Stalls Ratification
During the Revolutionary War, the Federal Government ran up debts of almost eight million dollars, a staggering sum for that day. The various States also had debts due to the war. Many of the States held claims to the lands west of the Appalachian Mountains. New York and Virginia had the largest claims. However, Massachusetts, Connecticut, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia also had extensive holdings. These claims totaled more than 222 million acres, a huge expanse.
Maryland's chief complaint was that these states held a huge advantage over the landless states. This was because they could sell these lands to pay their debts. They felt that landless states like Maryland would have to levy heavy taxes to pay theirs off, stifling their growth.
Maryland feared that land rich states could operate with out any taxes, relying on the sale of these western lands for revenue. Maryland's residents would flee to the tax free states. The impasse lasted almost four years.
Royal Charters
Virginia's claims originated in the second Royal Charter, granted by King James I. In it, he granted Virginia the lands of Maine south to the current North Carolina/South Carolina border. The lands were to extend "from sea to sea, west and northwest." this grant extended all the way to the Pacific Ocean, a staggering expanse of land. Revisions to this grant occurred over the years, but by the time of the Revolution, they still included lands claimed by Pennsylvania, New York and other colonies. When Virginian George Rogers Clark conquered Vincennes, Kaskaskia, Cahokia and other western outposts, he strengthened Virginia's claims to these regions. The Treaty of Paris had cut off the boundaries of the new nation at the Mississippi River. This still left Virginia and the other states with a vast territory to squabble over.
The Compromise

Congress and the states worked tirelessly to resolve the problems. New York, in a show of good faith, abandoned its land claims on January 17, 1780. Virginia followed suit on January 2, 1781, but they laid down conditions under which they would make it official. They wanted the Continental Congress to reimburse Virginia for the cost of George Rogers Clark's expedition, affirm all boundaries, affirm Virginia land claims in the disputed territories and reject all private claims in the cession area. This satisfied Maryland, which ratified the Articles on January 30, 1781. Congress did not accept the conditions, because many of the states still maintained their claims west of the Mississippi River. It took more negotiations to work out the problems and once again, Virginia renewed its offer on October 20, 1783, accepting Congress' recommendations. Congress accepted Virginia's cession on March 1, 1784. They had set the stage for the formation of the Northwest Territory and westward expansion.

A Day in Indiana History - March


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This Week in Indiana History - February 24, 1887 - Black Day of the Indiana General Assembly

Black Day of the Indiana General Assembly
Black Day of the Indiana General Assembly
Top Story of the Week in Indiana History
Fisticuffs, chaos and even gunshots ring out as Indiana chooses a new senator. 



February 24, 1887 - Black Day of the Indiana General Assembly
A legislative brawl in the Indiana Statehouse leads to fistfights, gunshots, and finally, the Governor calling the police to put down the riot in the State Capitol. The melee added fuel to the call for a Constitutional Amendment to end State Legislatures electing United States Senators.
The Governor Wants to be a Senator
Democratic Governor Isaac P. Gray wanted to serve as Senator in the United States Senate. In the days before the Seventeenth Amendment, State Legislatures chose the state's senators. Thus, the Indiana General Assembly would have to elect him. Gray's problem was, he had been a Republican and some of his actions taken as a Republican made the Senate Democrats hesitate to send him to the Senate. Democrats controlled the Indiana Senate while Republicans controlled the House.
A Day in Indiana History - February
A Day in Indiana History - February

Strategy Gone Awry
Senate Democrats convinced the Lieutenant Governor, Mahlon D. Manson, to resign. Their strategy was, if there were no Lieutenant Governor to replace the Governor, they could not elect a sitting Governor to the US Senate. To counter this move, Gray and the Indiana Secretary of State decided that a mid-term election for Lieutenant Governor was constitutional, so they scheduled a special election to fill the vacant Lieutenant Governor seat. Gray's wish that a Republican would win the special election was granted when Republican Robert S. Robertson won the election. Gray hoped that Republicans would support his election to the Senate, since his replacement would be a Republican. This placed the Democrats in a quandary.
Legal Conflicts
The Democrats deemed the special election unconstitutional and elected their own Lieutenant Governor, Alonzo Green Smith. The Republicans countered by filing a lawsuit against Smith, preventing him from taking his seat. The case went before the Indiana Supreme Court, who decided that, since he had won a popular election, Robertson could not be denied his seat.
Black Day of the Indiana General Assembly
On February 24, 1887, Robertson arrived at the Senate Chamber to preside over the Senate. A group of Democratic Senators attacked him and beat him to the floor. The Senate president pro tempore ordered the doormen to expel Robertson. The doormen complied. Republicans soon raised a ruckus, demanding that Robertson be allowed to take his seat. When the Democrats resisted, fights broke out all over the Senate chamber. As the fighting progressed through the floor, one Democratic Senator pulled a gun and shot a hole in the Senate Chamber's ceiling. He then threatened the Republicans, saying he would start killing them if they did not desist in fighting. This halted the conflict in the Senate, but people outside the chamber, alerted to the happenings inside the Senate, began fighting. The fight soon spread to the House of Representatives. They overwhelmed the outnumbered Democrats and ran through the Capitol, dragging Democrats outside to beat them. Another group broke down the Senate door and began dragging Democratic Senators outside. Governor Gray was compelled to send for the police, who came and brought the conflict under control. Four hours of chaos led to a total shutdown of legislative activity for that session, as the Democrats refused to communicate with the Republicans and the Republicans refused to communicate with the Democrats. The legislative session ended the next day. Gray's hope of becoming a United States Senator ended with the session.

Proponents of ending the State Legislature's role in selecting the United States Senators used the Black Day as one of their examples of why Senators should be popularly elected. The Seventeenth Amendment was ratified in 1913, providing for direct election of US Senators by the people.
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