Willard Library in Evansville

THIS WEEK

IN INDIANA HISTORY


MARCH 22 - MARCH 28

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1824     Nine Indians were murdered near Pendleton.  Called the “Fall Creek Massacre,” the crime resulted in the hanging of three white men, the first time such a penalty had been carried out for the killing of Native Americans.   

 1885     The Willard Library was dedicated in Evansville.  The beautiful Gothic-Revival building includes a tower with steeply-pitched roofs and ornamental gables.  Delicate terra cotta covers much of the exterior in the form of rosettes and owls, symbols of wisdom.  Legend has it that the library is haunted by a ghost known as “The Gray Lady.”

 1899     Ruth Page was born in Indianapolis.  She grew up to become a world-renown ballerina and choreographer.  Growing up, she attended Tudor Hall for Girls and became life-long friends with Elizabeth Harrison and her mother, Mrs. Benjamin Harrison.  Her legacy included the Ruth Page Center for the Arts in Chicago. 

1913     A series of tornadoes swirled from the Great Plains into the Ohio Valley.  Winds whipped through the section part of Terre Haute, damaging or destroying 300 homes.  One five-block area was completely leveled, and 21 people lost their lives.  Subsequent flash flooding took an additional dozen lives. 

 1947     Thousands of kids in Central Indiana gathered around their radios to read the Sunday comics with “Uncle Wally” Nehrling.  He read the “funnies” each week, and added drama and laughs to the printed pages.   The long-time radio personality often attended birthday parties for his young listeners.   Nehrling’s familiar voice was heard on WIRE Radio for nearly 40 years. 

 2012     Randall T. Shepard retired as Chief Justice of the Indiana Supreme Court.  He was the longest-serving Chief Justice in Indiana history.  Appointed to the Court in 1985 by Governor Robert D. Orr, Shepard had earlier served as Judge of the Vanderburgh Superior Court in Evansville.