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June in Indiana History

1 June –

1864 – Clarksville, IN. Ohio Falls Car & Locomotive Company founded on 19 acres. Brick manufacturing buildings still stand, recycled as commercial development. [Kramer, p. 188]

2 June –

1774 – London, England. Parliament passes the Quebec Act. Having poked a stick into a hornet’s nest by demanding that the French residents of Vincennes, IN, abandon their property and relocate, Britain now assimilates the French settlements along the Wabash and Mississippi Rivers into the province of Canada, which Britain currently owns. Furthermore, the people of Vincennes are to be permitted to practice their Roman Catholic religion. (See 8 April 1765.) [Cayton, p. 65]

1988 – Harrison County, IN. The unique 10,000 year old American Indian site of Swan’s Landing has been looted. More than 70 gaping holes have destroyed an irreplaceable time capsule of heritage, silencing forever some of the first people to inhabit Indiana. The handful of projectile points which the thieves may have found will earn them “beer money at the most,” said Ed Smith, an assistant at the G.A. Black Archaeology Laboratory at Indiana University in Bloomington. [Griffin 2, p. 6]

3 June –

1825 – Pendleton, IN. Andrew Sawyer and John Bridge Sr. are hanged on a gallows erected in what is now the City Park. John Bridge Jr. is brought up to the trap door, hooded, and the noose fixed round his neck. Officials take as long as possible to carry out the death sentence of the 18-year-old. Sentiment is that he participated in “the tragedy at the falls” because he was forced by his uncle and father, who have just been dispatched. Pleas have been sent to Governor James Ray begging a pardon for the young man, but nothing has been heard. Most officials and spectators hope for a last moment reprieve. They are not disappointed. Seconds before Bridge would drop, a horse pounds into the crowd. The rider, six feet tall, swathed in a black cape and wearing a wide-brimmed black slouch hat, dismounts and strides to the center of attention. “There are only two powers in heaven and earth who can save this boy from a dreadful fate – Almighty God and Governor James Brown Ray,” he declaimed. “I am Governor Ray, and I give this boy his pardon.” 
  Bridge will live out his very long life in the community and become one of Pendleton’s most respected citizens. 
  Thomas Harper never answers for his crimes. It is said that he had lost family members to Indian attacks in Ohio, but this is never confirmed and Harper is never found. (See 22 March 1824; 23 March 1824; 12 January 1825.) [Funk, p. 37-9]

1914 – Corydon, IN. “Splendid” concrete walks have been completed from the street to the courthouse [the Old Capitol], and the county office building. Grass is sown, flowers planted, and a sanitary drinking fountain is most welcome on hot summer days. [Griffin 2, p. 63]

1931 – Corydon, IN. The town streets will have oil and fresh rock applied this week. According to a 13 June 1984 article by Frederick P. Griffin, the dirt streets of early Corydon were all-but-impassable with rain, or snow melt. The only maintenance was teams of horses dragging heavy timbers to squeeze the ruts closed. Every home had a boot scrapper by the front door. Before the Civil War, limestone slabs were laid at intersections to make pedestrian crosswalks. They had to be spaced in the center of the street to accommodate wagon wheels. Still later, gravel from Big and Little Indian creeks was brought up by horse and wagon to be scattered on downtown streets. Next in improvements, limestone from outcroppings around town was hauled in and had to be broken up by men with sledgehammers. The advent of the automobile necessitated still more serious road work. Rock quarries with stone crushers sprang up throughout Harrison County, marketing the abundant limestone. To help control dust in the summer, Corydon applied coats of oil or tar to the gravel. The stone crosswalks in Corydon were replaced with brick and were about three feet wide. Brick along the south and east sides of the Old Capitol square is an old parking lot for horses, the brick making clean-up possible. Corydon had no brick streets. [Griffin 2, p. 23]

4 June –

5 June –

1919 – Corydon, IN. Thursday. A newspaper reports that the first [train] car load of strawberries that ever came to Corydon arrived at the Curtice Brothers Company on Tuesday last, shipped from Bowling Green, KY. In the intervening days several tons of strawberry jam have been shipped in barrels to the company’s New York bottling plant. [Griffin 2, p. 97]

1924 – Corydon, IN. Town gets “a silent cop.” A traffic sign, painted red and looking like a gasoline tank, is located in the center of the intersection of Chestnut and Market Streets. It directs drivers to keep right. This intersection is the busiest in town, especially during fair week. [Griffin 2, p. 22]

6 June –

1790 – Knox County, IN, established. County seat is Vincennes. It is the original county of Indiana and is named in honor of US Secretary of War Henry Knox. [… …/List_of_counties_in_In…]

1865 – Indianapolis, IN. General Order arrives for the last of the Confederate POWs to be released from Camp Morton. Only about 300 men remain to begin their journey south. [Funk; p. 77-9]

7 June –

1811 – Corydon, IN. Harrison County purchases unfinished home of George F. Pope, Lot 12. This will become the “courthouse on the hill,” the first county courthouse. It will later be deeded to Dennis Pennington in partial payment for his work in building the stone courthouse, which will be the first state capitol building. (See 17 January 1809; 6 February 1811.) [Griffin 2, p. 84]

1820 – [Indianapolis, IN.] John Tipton records in his journal: Wednesday…A fine, clear morning. We met at McCormicks, and on my motion the Commissioners came to a resolution to select and locate [the sections of land to become Indianapolis]… At 5 we decamped and went over to McCormicks. Our clerk having his writing ready the commissioners met and signed their report, and certified the service of the clerk.
  At 6:45 the first boat landed that ever was seen at the seat of government. It was a small ferry flat with a canoe tied alongside, both loaded with the household good of two families moving to the mouth of Fall creek. [Griffin 2, p. 44]

1864 – Andersonville Prison, GA. Pvt. Lessel Long, native of Andrews, IN, captured in May, arrives at the prison. He records: It was June 7th and very hot. We remained in line until we could be assigned to Hundreds and Divisions. After we had been assigned we were taken inside of the stockade, it being about 1 o’clock. The stockade was crowded to its utmost capacity, there being over 20,000 men confined in a space of less than seventeen acres. We were perfectly amazed at the horrible sight that met our eyes. At every step we saw men prostrated by disease, men dying from neglect, men almost naked mend blackened by smoke, me begrimed by dirt. All the horrible sights of suffering humanity could here be seen in a few minutes time.
  Sometime in its hellish year of existence, Pvt. Luther Miller of Company E, 81st Ind. Infantry Regiment, and a native of Harrison County, IN, recorded this about the prison’s rations: Our main rations were a small piece of corn bread about three inches square and perhaps once a week one tablespoon full of raw beans. We were not furnished any regular way to cook them, and there were often more bugs than beans in the rations.
  Still another Hoosier prisoner reported that the cornbread contained more cobs than corn. (See 15 February 1864; 20 February 1864; 24 March 1864; 19 July 1864; 22 July 1864; 10 November 1865.) [Funk, 90-97]

8 June –

1839 – Brookville, IN. The first boat arrives on the Whitewater Canal. [Funk, p. 57]

9 June –

10 June –

1816 – Corydon, IN. The constitutional convention convenes. [Griffin 2, p. 13]

1967 – St. Louis, MO. Cardinal Joseph Ritter dies. He is buried in Calvary Cemetery, St. Louis. (See 20 July 1892; 30 May 1917; 28 March 1933; 10 December 1960.) EL, p. 763-4]

11 June –

1872 – Crandall, IN. Town founded by Cornelius F. Crandall. [Griffin 2, p. 30]

1896 – Corydon, IN. Unattributed announcement: The town of Cordon has for sale at a bargain, forty-seven gasoline street lamps, almost new, including poles and cans. 
  James Brandenburg (1867-1913) was the last lamplighter of Corydon. He began using coal oil, but the town later switched to gasoline. One of his sons was named Corydon (1902-1954). When the children tumbled home from school ravenous for a snack, neighbors grew accustomed to Mr. Brandenburg admonishing: Look out or you will spill apple butter all over CORYDON. [Griffin 2, p. 15]

12 June –

1924 – Corydon, IN. The Corydon Republican favorably announces the nomination of Lew M. O’Bannon, owner/editor of the Corydon Democrat, for lieutenant governor. [Griffin 2, p. 185]

13 June –

1979 – Corydon, IN. The Corydon Democrat remembers the first state band contest, held in Elkhart, in 1927. [Griffin 2, p. 65]

1929 – Corydon, IN. George C. Doolittle is awarded the contract to demolish the old county office building, in back of the Old Capitol building. [Griffin 2, p. 57]

Births –

1784 – Uniontown, Fayette County, PA. Isaac McCoy born. He will grow up in Kentucky, and will feel the call to preach at 17. He will become one of the most important Baptist missionaries in Indiana, ministering to the Indians. (See 21 June 1846.) [Funk, p. 144-7]

14 June –

1849 – Indiana shore, opposite Louisville, KY. John Thompson Gray and Henry Clay Pope duel. Pope is mortally wounded in first fire, but lives long enough to forgive his friend. Fighting strictly according to the code duello, Gray is nonetheless indicted for murder in Indiana. Public opinion censures him in Louisville, so he flees to Maryland. This duel will result in the anti-dueling clause in the 1850 Kentucky constitution. (See Kentucky 9 September 1815; 17 July 1902.) [EL, p. 353]

15 June –

1901 – West Baden, IN. Shortly after 1:00 a.m., a night watchman discovers a fire in the kitchen of the resort hotel. The wooden structure is soon completely engulfed, along with bath house, electric light plant, the new swimming pool, laundry, dance hall, ice plant, gymnasium, hand ball courts, barns and employee quarters. Damage is half a million dollars. No human life is lost; 268 guests, plus staff survive. The two casualties are Old Bingham and Prince, good-natured dogs who greeted all guests and stayed for any petting to be had. [Bundy, West Baden…, p. 30; Visions…, p. 24-6]

16 June –

1943 – Corydon, IN. The newspapers announce the first county-wide blackout. The fire siren and the steam whistle at the Keller plant will sound the following Tuesday night. Everyone driving is to pull over and turn off vehicle lights. Everyone is to seek shelter. The lights regularly seen in farm homes are excepted and may be kept on. [Griffin 2, p. 84]

17 June –

Births –

1700 – Montreal, Canada. Francois Marie Bissot born. He will become the second Sieur de Vincennes. [Funk, p. 142-4]

18 June –

19 June –

1929 – Corydon, IN. The contents of the old Harrison County office building, and the contents of the old courthouse – also known as the Old Capitol – have been sold at public auction, “as per the law in such cases.” [Griffin 2, p. 60]

20 June –

1815 – Corydon, IN. Abandoning the superheated “courthouse on the hill,” the members of the constitutional convention conclude their work, in the shade of the Constitution Elm. [Griffin2, p. 13]

21 June –

1752 – Pickawillany, on the White River, IN. Charles Michel Langlade, about 23 years old, leads 30 Frenchmen, 30 Ottawa and 180 Chippewa against the Miami village of Pickawillany. Most of the warriors are away hunting when Langlade leads a sweep across the corn fields, capturing the women working there. They quickly trapped the British traders and the Miami who were in the stockade. Three traders surrender and betray the weakness of the fortification. Langlade offers an exchange of the women for the British traders. Upon exchange, the French killed one trader; two escaped; five are taken to Detroit. Fourteen Miami are killed in the exchange this day. The most important loss is the death of the great Piankashaw chief Memeskia. Virginia-based trader Captain William Trent is told that the French “boiled, and eat him all up,” apparently believing the ancient superstition that they could gain the strength of their opponent by consuming his flesh. [Cayton, p. 24]

1786 – Vincennes, IN. American Indians attack Americans working in a cornfield. Two men are wounded, one of them scalped. Americans led by Daniel Sullivan come into town, kill and scalp a sick Indian and proceed to drag his body around “like a pig on the tail of a horse,” according to Judge Le Gras. Le Gras describes Sullivan as “very dangerous and pernicious to the public peace.” He orders all Americans who cannot produce a legitimate passport, according to John Small, “to leave this place Bagg and Baggage Immediately.” The Americans of course refuse, and Small reports, “Danger and Distruction stears every american in the face.” [Cayton, p. 94]

1817 - Corydon, IN. The American Antiquarian Society of Worcester has a single copy of the Indiana Gazette, from this date. This is the oldest copy of this newspaper to be located; but the paper was established in Corydon sometime in 1815. (See 9 January 1918; 28 December 1820.) [Griffin 2, p. 180]

Deaths –

1846 – Louisville, KY. Baptist missionary Isaac McCoy dies. (See 13 June 1784.) [Funk, p. 144-7]

22 June –

1819 – Corydon, IN. President James Monroe visits on his western tour. He is accompanied by Andrew Jackson. The party is raucously escorted into town, then discreetly sequestered by Governor and Mrs. Jonathan Jennings. [Griffin 2, p. 32]

1885 – New Albany, IN. The Kentucky and Indiana Bridge Company is organized and builds the first single track bridge. [Griffin 2, p. 35]

1898 – Corydon, IN. Several weeks previous, Prof. John A. Reising, teacher at Laconia, discovered a large Indian burial ground. The graves are very near the river and are washing out “for quite a distance along the shore… It is truly an interesting spot and hundreds of people have been searching for the hidden remains.” [Griffin 2, p. 7] Such “searching” is now illegal, punishable by fines and prison sentences. (See 2 June 1988; 6 May 1992.)

Births –

1903 – Indianapolis, IN. John Dillinger born.

23 June –

1923 – Corydon, IN. The Indiana Historical Society begins a two-day “Pilgrimage” beginning here, and including sightseeing trips to New Albany and to the George Rogers Clark home site in Clarksville. [Griffin 2, p. 107]

24 June –

1922 – Clarksville, IN. A marker at the home site of George Rogers Clark is dedicated. [Griffin 2, p. 107]

25 June –

1888 – Chicago, IL. On the eighth ballot, Benjamin Harrison receives the Republican nomination for president. (See 20 August 1833; 22 March 1865; 6 November 1888; 13 March 1901.) [Funk, p. 108]

26 June –

27 June –

28 June –

1965 – Corydon, IN. Beginning today and continuing tomorrow, Sheriff Norman Troncin and his staff move into the new Harrison County Jail. This is not the present Harrison County Jail. (See 24-28 August 1964.) [Griffin 2, p. 103]

29 June –

1816 – Corydon, IN. Convention delegates adopt the constitution, effective immediately, without ratification by the people. This is the first state constitution to provide for free education for all children within the state. [Kramer, p. 74]

1933 – Corydon, IN. One newspaper reports that the tradition of charivari was not dead, but only sleeping – which the victims were definitely not. Five recently married couples were visited in turn and roused from their homes by a din a good-natured banging, clanging, whooping, hollering, and general disturbance of the peace. [Griffin 2, p. 16]

30 June –

1805 – Washington City. Michigan Territory split off from Indiana Territory.

1857 – South Bend, IN. James Oliver receives his first US patent for an improvement in “Chilling Plow Shares.” He will go on to revolutionize the chilled plow, become a millionaire, and create the largest plow manufactory in the world. (See 28 August 1823; 3 April 1835; 2 March 1908.) [Funk, p. 134-5]

1906 – Washington, DC. Congress enacts the Pure Food and Drug Act, authored by Harvey Washington Wiley, MD. (See 18 October 1844; 30 June 1930.) [Funk, p. 153-4]

1915 – Corydon, IN. The newspaper carries a story that the previous Thursday, a band of gypsies came to town. In these days before ACLU, Town Marshal George W. Fried simply ordered them to leave, which they did. [Griffin 2, p. 16]

1990 – Corydon, IN. A tornado damages trees in the Courthouse Square, and Cedar Hill Cemetery loses more than 30 of its big trees. [Griffin 2, p. 156]

Deaths –

1930 – Washington, DC. Dr. Harvey Washington Wiley dies. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. (See 18 October 1844; 30 June 1906.) [Funk, p. 153-4]

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