Indianapolis has a unique vibe that you’ll quickly notice as soon as you get within the city limits. It might be a large city, but it has a small-town feel. It is also a city with a long history that even dates back to prehistoric times. Whether you love history or not, it comes alive in Indianapolis with real historic landmarks and sites to visit.
Indianapolis Ford Assembly Plant
The Ford Motor Company Plant in Indianapolis first opened in 1915, and by the 1920’s it had 300 employees assembling 300 Ford Model-Ts a day. The building is now vacant but slated to become a residential apartment and retail space. Although you can no longer go inside, it is worth a look from the outside.
Soldiers and Sailors Monument
One of the most significant historic sites in Indy is the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument. This monument was the first in the U.S. to be dedicated to the everyday, common soldier. It stands 284 feet tall and sits in the heart of the downtown area.
Crown Hill Cemetery
The massive Crown Hill Cemetery is one of the largest in the U.S., and taking a walk through it is like walking through history. You can grab a map at the gatehouse to give you an idea of where some of the important historical figures rest.
You can’t explore historic sites in Indianapolis without a stop at the Indiana Statehouse. It recently underwent a $10 million renovation to restore much of the interior to its original splendor. Guided tours are available and will take you to see the unique displays, such as the brass spittoons in the Supreme Court chambers.
Indiana War Memorial
This memorial sits in the center of the Indianapolis Historic District. The memorial was set up in 1919 and is dedicated to the war heroes of World War I. It’s constructed from Indiana limestone and stands on a raised platform. The main exhibits at the memorial include military flags, photographs, arms and weapons, and a replica of the USS Radio Room.
You wouldn’t think that a fieldhouse and basketball court are part of a city’s history, but the Hinkle Fieldhouse is the 6th oldest in the U.S. It was also the largest until 1950. Many people refer to the building as Indiana’s Basketball Cathedral.
Oldfields-Lilly House and Gardens
This historic estate and museum is an example of the American Country House Movement. Hugh McKennan Landen built the house in 1909 and lived in it before Josiah K. Lillly Jr purchased it. The estate is now a public museum representing their lifestyle.
Medal of Honor Memorial
This memorial is for Medal of Honor recipients. It’s one of the newer historic sites in the city, built in 1999. It has 27 glass panels and the names of the recipients carved into the walls.
Hannah House is a historic house built in 1858. It’s believed to be a place for slaves to stop on their way to freedom. Alexander Hannah and his family would welcome them, feed them, and give them a place to sleep for the night.
Plenty of History to Experience in Indianapolis
These Indianapolis historic sites are just a few of the many that are worth checking out. There are also many churches and museums that help tell the story of Indy’s history.
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