Home | Contact Us | Facebook | Subscribe | Advertise
The Noblesville Times 24-7
  • 10/16/2019 Need a new pair of snow boots? After you read this column, you might want to run out and get them.
    Yes, it’s time once again to pull all the weather signs together to try to figure out what the coming winter will bring.
    I want to issue a disclaimer first, though — I am NO Clara Hoover.
    Clara was Sheridan’s resident expert on using folk signs to predict the weather. If she was still with us, she’d have had no trouble putting together a coherent forecast. I, on the other hand, lack her experience and skill, so I’m just going to pass along my observations and let you formulate your own predictions.
    First up — the fogs in August. According to Clara, the number of August fogs equals the number of big snows we can expect.
    So far, so good. I only counted four fogs and I’m not sure about two of those. (On two days WISH-TV’s fog map only showed fog in the far northeast or far northwest corner of the county. I don’t know if those days should be counted or not since the entire county wasn’t covered.)
    The next thing to note is the direction of the wind around the autumn equinox.
  • 10/9/2019 While Hamilton County never had as many covered bridges as Parke County, there were probably more than you realize — six and a half, to be exact. (I’ll explain the “half” in a moment.)
    Nearly all those bridges were the Howe truss type, and nearly all were built by Noblesville carpenter/contractor Josiah Durfee and his associates. (Durfee’s partners varied from bridge to bridge.)
    Two of Durfee’s bridges, the Cicero and Greenfield Pike bridges, spanned creeks.
    Cicero’s covered bridge was located west of town over Cicero Creek. Some sources state that it was built in 1881, but the June 22, 1883 Hamilton County Democrat notes that the county commissioners “accepted the bridge built by Durfee, Swain and Wilson across Cicero Creek” at their June meeting.
    You won’t find any trace of that bridge today because it was razed in 1955 to make way for Morse Reservoir, but its memory lives on in the park named for it, Red Bridge Park.
  • Ready to dig into your past?
    10/2/2019 Back in 2001 Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah introduced a resolution in the United States Senate that designated October as “Family History Month.”
    The President never got around to issuing a proclamation in support of that resolution so Family History Month didn’t become an official national observance, but that’s okay. You can still celebrate it.
  • And they're off like a heard of turtles
    9/25/2019 Remember the “Turtle Derbies” I mentioned in last week’s column, the ones that used to be held at the old Logan Street armory?
    That was just too intriguing a topic to leave alone, so I went digging for more information. I discovered turtle racing was sort of a “thing” all over the country from the late 1940s to the early ‘60s.
  • Memories of armory, lost buildings
    9/18/2019 The construction of the Levinson building started me thinking about all the significant structures in downtown Noblesville that have disappeared just during my lifetime.
    It’s quite a list: The Diana Theater and the old Harrell Hospital building (now a parking lot,) the Wild Opera House (currently another parking lot, but soon part of the Levinson) the Carnegie library (replaced by City Hall,) and the entire west side of the square to the river, including a section of Sixth Street (demolished to construct the Hamilton County Judicial Center.)
    Then there’s the old National Guard armory, which sat at the east end of the Logan Street bridge in the space currently occupied by Courtney’s Kitchen; Gilley, Dandurand & Summerfield Law Group and yet another parking lot.
    I must have passed that building a thousand times, but I didn’t fully appreciate the importance it once held for the community until I started researching it. 
    The history of the armory, and of the National Guard in Hamilton County, goes back to Oct. 25, 1921, when 78 young local men were mustered into the Headquarters Company of the 139th Indiana Field Artillery at the courthouse.
  • 9/11/2019 I’d planned to write on an entirely different subject this week, but to be honest, I’m having trouble concentrating and I don’t think I could give that column my best effort right now. 
    I recently lost my furry little boy, Oliver, and I’m still in shock because it happened so suddenly and because he was only 2 years old.
    Over the Labor Day holiday, a change in his behavior concerned me to the point I took him to a 24 hour emergency center. Although the doctors there did their best to save him, after three days I had to make the agonizing decision to let him go.
    But, I don’t want to dwell on that. I’d rather celebrate the two years of joy he gave me.
    I’ve written before how I’ve thought of Oliver and his adopted brother, Beau, as my “Martin and Lewis” cats. Beau is VERY high energy. (Think Jerry Lewis at his wildest.)
  • Feedback time!
    9/4/2019 It’s reader feedback time again!
    Remember when I said I knew of no map that showed Dismal Swamp?
    That’s essentially true, but Nancy Massey pointed out that “Dismal Creek” appears on a 1912 Hamilton County soil map which you can find on the Hamilton County Surveyor’s website (www.hamiltoncounty.in.gov/647/Maps-Aerials-Plats.)
    Although not technically a map of the swamp, it probably gives as good an idea as we’re likely to get of the territory the swamp once covered. Dismal Creek cut a diagonal path from the west side of Deming to a little east of Hortonville.
    Interestingly, within the territory marked on the map is an “island” of different soil, immediately south of what is now the intersection of State Roads 31 and 38.
  • A celebration of Hamilton County’s Pioneer Spirit
    8/28/2019 August has long been a favorite month for big annual outdoor gatherings in this area — family reunions, Chautauquas, the State Fair and, back when the State Fair was held in September, county fairs.
    Then there are the Old Settlers Meetings.
    If you’ve never heard of the Old Settlers Meetings, don’t feel bad. While they used to be fairly common in this country during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, especially in Indiana and Kansas, only a few continue to be held today.
    I wish I could provide a definite year for Hamilton County’s first meeting, but the county histories are vague about the meetings’ origins and too many gaps exist in the library’s collection of early newspapers to use them as a reliable source.
    There is, however, evidence these gatherings date back to at least 1871.
  • 8/21/2019 I recently received an email from my relative, Kermit Ross, with the subject line, “Murder! . . . In Deming!”

    Needless to say, that got my attention.

    It seems Kermit, who now lives in Texas, but grew up in Deming, was researching his family tree when he made the startling discovery that his second great-uncle was the central figure in one of Hamilton County’s biggest murder trials.

    Better make that TWO of the county’s biggest trials. Amasa J. Foulke was tried twice for the murder of his wife — once in 1874 and again, a year later.

    Although newspaper accounts of the 1874 trial are no longer available, the results are well known. Foulke was found guilty of murder in the first degree and sentenced to life imprisonment.
  • 8/14/2019 August has long been a favorite month for big annual outdoor gatherings in this area — family reunions, Chautauquas, the State Fair and, back when the State Fair was held in September, county fairs.
    Then there are the Old Settlers Meetings.
    If you’ve never heard of the Old Settlers Meetings, don’t feel bad. While they used to be fairly common in this country during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, especially in Indiana and Kansas, only a few continue to be held today.
    I wish I could provide a definite year for Hamilton County’s first meeting, but the county histories are vague about the meetings’ origins and too many gaps exist in the library’s collection of early newspapers to use them as a reliable source.
    There is, however, evidence these gatherings date back to at least 1871.
    Tracking down the history of the meetings is also rather complicated because they were held at more than one site, sometimes in the same year.
    Among the Hamilton County locations were Roberts Settlement, Carmel (the Kinzer farm,) Westfield (Bowman’s Grove,) Sheridan (Compton’s Grove,) Arcadia (Martz’s Grove,) Fisher’s Station (Harrison’s Grove,) and Noblesville (the courthouse and the Swain fairgrounds.)
    Additionally, Hamilton County residents sometimes joined with residents of surrounding counties for meetings at Perkinsville, Broad Ripple and Oakland (today’s Oaklandon.)
Looking for something older? Try our archive search

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Site Search



Our app is now available!

     
    



© 2019 The Times
a division of Sagamore News Media
54 N 9th Street, Noblesville, IN

(317) 770-7777

life

Software © 1998-2019 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved