HOOSIER HISTORY HIGHLIGHTS: Indiana Adopts a Constitution


June 27 – July 3

The Week in Indiana History


1816     The first Indiana State Constitution was adopted by the legislature in the state capital of Corydon.  The 43 delegates had met for nearly three weeks to create the document which was an integral step to statehood.  Among other provisions, the constitution prohibited slavery and recommended a public school system.  Pictured:  The Statehouse in Corydon.  

monument1863     The Civil War Battle at Gettysburg ended with a Union victory. Approximately 2,200 Indiana men were engaged from the 3rd Cavalry and 7th, 14th, 19th, 20th, and 27th Infantry Regiments.  The 19th was part of the famous “Iron Brigade.”  Over one-quarter of the Hoosier soldiers at Gettysburg were killed or wounded.  Pictured:  The Indiana monument on the Gettysburg battlefield.  

books1886     The Western Association of Writers met at Plymouth Church in Indianapolis.  Many Indiana authors were in attendance, including Maurice Thompson, who was elected the group’s first president.  Over the years, the organization included James Whitcomb Riley, Sarah Bolton, Meredith Nicholson, Booth Tarkington, Mary H. Catherwood and others who were part of the “Golden Age of Indiana Literature.”

Bryan1923     Famed orator William Jennings Bryan came to the Gennett Record Company in Richmond, Indiana.  He recorded excerpts of his famous “Cross of Gold” speech.  The Richmond studio is a legendary part of jazz history.  For more, see “Did You Know?” in the right column.

Miller1940     The popular Glenn Miller Band played one-night only at the Ideal Beach Ballroom at Shafer Lake in Monticello.  The band, rated number-one by Billboard Magazine, dominated record sales and plays on radio and jukeboxes.  Their recording of “In the Mood” was at the top of the hit parade for 1940.

Jimison1943     Zilthia Mae Jimison was born in Indianapolis.  She attended law school and became the first African American woman to serve on the Marion County Superior Court.  She was on the Indianapolis city council and, in 1995, was a candidate for mayor.  She established the drug treatment court and was active in many civic organizations.


Opportunity seldom shows up, but temptation has a reg’lar route.

(Kin Hubbard, The Indianapolis News,June 20, 1916)


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Indiana Department of Administration

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Indiana Quick Quiz

From the seven names below, select the four who have served as Governor of Indiana.

Benjamin Harrison     Evan Bayh  Edgar Whitcomb      Lew Wallace  Joe Kernan      Vance Hartke      Robert Orr

Answers Below

Hoosier Quote of the Week


“There is no royal flower-strewn path to success.  And if there is, I have not found it, for whatever success I have attained has been the result of much hard work and many sleepless nights.”

– – – Madam C. J. Walker (1867 – 1919)

Madam C. J. Walker’s cosmetics business in Indianapolis made her the first self-made woman millionaire in America.


Did You Know?

     The Gennett Recording Studio was established in Richmond, Indiana, by the Starr Piano Company.  The first records were released in 1917.  The studio was near a railroad track and sometimes a recording session was ruined by a passing train.  For soundproofing, a mohawk rug was placed on the floor and drapes and towels were hung on the walls.  Many young jazz artists, ignored by other record companies, were welcomed at Gennett.  That was where many big names got their start, including Louis Armstrong, Hoagy Carmichael, Jelly Roll Morton, Bix Beiderbecke, Earl Hines, and Duke Ellington.   In addition, the studio was available to performers of other musical styles including blues, country, and gospel.  The company faltered during the Great Depression, but it is revered today for its role in capturing for posterity the broad landscape of American music in the early 20th Century.

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ANSWERS:   Evan Bayh, Edgar Whitcomb, Joe Kernan, Robert Orr