|A Year of Indiana History - 2016|
The Peru and Indianapolis Railroad connected Indianapolis, Indiana with Peru, Indiana and the Wabash and Erie Canal.
William N. Hood founded Peru in 1834 on the banks of the Wabash River. The first boat on the Wabash and Erie Canal reached Peru on July 4, 1837. Peru is the county seat of Miami County, southwest of Fort Wayne in northern Indiana.
Wabash and Erie Canal
Construction on the Wabash and Erie Canal began on February 22, 1832 at Fort Wayne, Indiana. Construction completed on July 4, 1843. At 468 miles long, it was the longest canal in the United States and the second longest in the world. The canal connected the Erie Canal with Evansville, Indiana. It was one of only two canals completed by the Massive Internal Improvement Act of 1836. The other is the Whitewater Canal. The canal's excessive operating costs and the advent of the railroad made the canal impractical. It ceased operations by 1857. Portions of the canal still exist. Interested visitors can visit one section and take a canal ride:
Wabash & Erie Canal
1030 N. Washington St.
Delphi, IN 46923
Peru and Indianapolis Railroad
Construction began on the Peru and Indianapolis Railroad in 1849 at its southern terminus in Indianapolis. Construction completed to Peru in 1854, seventy miles north of its beginning. The Peru and Indianapolis Railroad did not have any of its own equipment, the line operated under a lease with the Madison and Indianapolis. The Erie Canal ceased operation by 1857, but the Peru and Indianapolis Railroad established links with other rail lines in Peru, connecting it with Chicago, New York and other cities across the Midwest. The railroad stimulated economic growth in the area it served.
A Year of Indiana History - 2016
© Paul Wonning