YESTERYEAR: Garvin Park Pool

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Garvin Park Pool

by Pat Sides

Just over a century ago, city officials accelerated the development of public parks in Evansville as a means for urban dwellers to relax and enjoy some fresh air. In 1915, the Garvin family sold nearly a hundred acres of land at the end of Main Street to the city for recreational use, and Bosse Field, seen here in the middle of the image, opened later that year.

Within the next couple of years, a wading pool (left) and a larger pool (right) were built for the public, providing welcome relief from sweltering temperatures in the era before air conditioning. This image shows the swimming pools from a still unpaved Morgan Avenue, looking towards the east.

The two early pools were later filled in and forgotten, at least until recently when contractors working on the new Deaconess Aquatic Center came across evidence of their existence on the site. The Center is expected to open in the summer of 2021, just in time for people still seeking ways to beat the summer heat.

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