Yesteryear: Division and Main Streets

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Division and Main Streets

by Pat Sides

In this 1982 photo, the old railroad tracks that once stretched down the center of Division Street are still intact. The intersection of Division and Main streets was one of the busiest in the city; regarded as the “gateway to the north,” the historic Jacobsville neighborhood begins in this block north of Division Street, terminating at Bosse Field.

As plans for a new east-west expressway progressed, familiar landmarks began to disappear along Division. The prominent two-story brick structure sitting at an angle in the center of the photo had stood since the 1890s. Originally built by North Side businessman Newton Kelsay, the firm manufactured harness parts for horse-drawn buggies and other products until it was sold in 1957. 

Along with all the other commercial buildings pictured here, it fell victim to the wrecking ball in the late 1980s. A fast food restaurant now occupies the site where most of these buildings stood.

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