February 14 – February 20 The Week in Indiana History

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Taylor

1849     General Zachary Taylor stopped in Indiana on his way to Washington to take the oath as the 12th President of the United States.  Traveling the Ohio River on the boat Ben Franklin, he stayed overnight in Madison.  News of his presence spread quickly and large crowds came to greet him.  The Indiana Sentinelreported that “the whole affair was got up in grand style, an expensive supper ordered, and committees dispatched in various directions.”


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USS Maine1898     The U.S.S. Maineexploded in Havana Harbor.  The tragedy helped ignite the Spanish-American War.  Indiana sent over 7,000 volunteers into the conflict, which lasted six months.  The U. S. S. Indiana played an important role in the blockade of Cuba and the Battle of Santiago.

Loew's

100 YEARS AGO

1921     It was a special Valentine’s Day in Indianapolis as two dozen movie stars arrived by special train from New York.  They had come to launch the opening of the new Loew’s State Theater on North Pennsylvania Street.  Accompanied by Company President Marcus Loew, they paraded to the Indiana Statehouse where they were greeted on the east steps by Governor Warren McCray.  Movie patrons were delighted to meet the Hollywood stars of the silent screen, including Ruth Roland, Helen Flint, Crauford Kent, Creighton Hale, and Hope Hampton.


school1936     Indiana Governor Paul McNutt urged schools to temporarily close in order to save the dwindling coal supply.  He and the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Floyd I. McMurray, said the situation was especially acute in smaller communities.  State coal mines had been hampered by frozen water mains, train car shortages, and the freezing-over of the Ohio River, hindering the passage of coal barges.

crest1955     The Proctor and Gamble Company gave a tubeof Crest toothpaste to Indiana University President Herman B. Wells.  The gift symbolized the firm’s major research project at the school.  The five-year program consisted of clinical trials in cavity prevention.  Over 1500 children and 40 adults participated.  The new toothpaste was placed on the market in 1956 with an ad campaign centered on the slogan, “Look, Mom!  No cavities!”

Oscar1961     Oscar Robertson, a graduate of Indianapolis Crispus Attucks High School, was on the cover of Time Magazine.  The article described his success in basketball at the University of Cincinnati.  He had already served as co-captain of the U.S. Basketball Team in the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome.  He went on to a legendary NBA career with the Cincinnati Royals and Milwaukee Bucks.

Abe Martin Sez:      Makin’ a long story short is a great aid t’ popularity.  (Indianapolis News, February 17, 1914)


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Indiana Quick Quiz

Match the names to the clues.

1.  Charlie Wiggins  2.  J. J. Johnson  3.  Madam C. J Walker  4. Richard Hatcher  5.  Major Taylor

A.  Jazz trombonist  B.  Mayor of Gary  C.  Race Driver   D.  Bicycle Racer  E.  Cosmetics Maker

Answers Below


Hoosier Quote of the Week

quote

“See into life.  Don’t just look at it.”

 – – – Anne Baxter (1923 – 1985)

Born in Michigan City, Anne Baxter was a popular actress on stage and in movies and television.


Did You Know?

Jimmy McDaniels

Jimmy McDaniels

February is Black History Month

     James “Jimmy” McDaniels was a “musician’s musician.”  Born in Alabama, he spent many years of his life in Indiana.  Known to Hoosiers as “The Piano Man,” he came to the state with a rich background of talent and service.  His father was a music professor, and he and his three brothers all played the saxophone and piano.  Jimmy’s talent, obvious to all, took him to studies at the Toledo Bach Conservatory.  After graduation,  he served two years in the Army band of  the 82nd Airborne Division.  He went on to become a popular accompanist and opening act for such stars as Cab Calloway, Nat King Cole, Mel Torme, the Four Freshmen, Sammy Davis, Jr., Rosemary Clooney, and Joe Williams.  Moving to Indiana, he became an education specialist, soloist, and guest conductor for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.   Always eager to spread the joy of music to others, he organized a jazz band at the Pendleton Reformatory.  For that he received the Governor’s Award for Outstanding Service.  His busy schedule included teaching jazz at local universities and visiting elementary schools to encourage musical talent.  He also put together a 17-piece orchestra which made its debut at the Indianapolis Museum of Art.  A member of the Indiana Jazz Hall of Fame, he could often be found seated at the piano in supper clubs in the area.  A true Renaissance Man, he was a licensed pilot and held a black belt in the martial arts.  Music was his mainstay, of course, and he conveyed its beauty to everyone he met.  He died in 2009 at age 80.


Statehouse Virtual Tour


ANSWERS:  1. C   2.  A   3. E

4. B    5. D

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