Highlights in History

Ancestor Hunts, Ancestry, and Newspapers By: Nancy Massey Have you ever wondered who your ancestors were, what kind of work they did, how did they live, from where did they come, and why did they move around so much?  I did.  When I was in high school, I...

Ringing in 1875 in Fishers Switch By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian I’ve done several posts on the raucous nature of early Fishers – here, here, here, here, here, and here - but it’s important to remember that there were other, more innocent times, when people just enjoyed each other’s company. In one post, I quoted...

A Holiday Recap in 1879 By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian Taking a deep breath after Christmas and looking at the impact of the day is nothing new.  The December 27, 1879, edition of the Hamilton County Democrat had a review of celebrations that had gone on around...

Christmas in 1869 By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian With the local newspapers now available online, I decided to check for information about early Christmas celebrations.  The earliest mentions that I’ve found are in the Ledger during the month of December, 1869.   These are advertisements and notices of...

A Christmas Movie By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian Historical documents can take a lot of different forms.  In 1935, the Noblesville Kiwanis club created a movie of their charitable work.  It was filmed by member Bert Cresson and was shown around central Indiana for few years.  Then...

A Poetic Mystery By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian With the new arts district in Noblesville, there is an impetus to start cataloging area arts figures.  While celebrities like Rex Stout are important, it’s worthwhile to go exploring for lesser known people.  I’ve mentioned writers like John Wise,...

Happy Birthday, Rex Stout By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian When discussing celebrities from Hamilton County, we sometimes have to be a little cautious.  Some of them were move-ins like William Dudley Pelley, some were passing through like Richard Bennett, and some left early like Lillian Albertson. Among...

Thanksgiving in 1890 By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian Besides family dinner, Thanksgiving now brings to mind parades, football, and Black Friday sales.  In the past, however, it has been fairly somber.  Being rooted in the harvest celebration of the pilgrims at Plymouth and the first official proclamation...

An Unexpected Aerial Visitor By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian In the early days of aviation, balloon racing was a popular sport.  Unlike today’s hot-air balloons, they were hydrogen filled, a practice that continued until the Hindenburg disaster in 1937.  They appeared often in central Indiana because Carl...

Cynthiana – The First Geist Community By: David Heighway, Hamilton County Historian The area around Fishers and Geist is the site of some of the newest housing in Hamilton County, but it was actually settled very early.  A town in Fall Creek Township in one of the few...

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