B Named Places in Allen County, Indiana

Baer Field Airport

See the Fort Wayne International Airport section or Paul F. Baer on the People pages. An image of the Saturday, April 1, 1944 The Beacon newsletter titled Baer Field And Its Boss--1917 Version! posted July 30, 2022 by the Greater Fort Wayne Aviation Museum on Facebook shows an article with an aerial photo of a farm house about Korah Micheals who bought a farm in 1917 whose fields south of Fort Wayne became the ariport runways and hangars. Over 60 items are found in a search for Baer Field on Internet Archive. An August 28, 2022 post on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook shows a 1925 to 2001 Smith Field Timeline from the March 26, 2002 The News-Sentinel newspaper for Baer Field at Smith Field.

Baker Farm House

1880 home of Elam and Sarah Baker in a 1902 photo overlaid with a 2013 photo by descendant Baker Photography & Design on Facebook.

Baker Street Station

Has a Facebook page. See web page for Historic Baker Street Station. The Pennslyvania Railroad Station was visited by 10,000 people on opening day, March 23, 1914. From Take a step into history and dream about the future as the Baker Street Station celebrates 100 years and Photo Gallery with video lists notable and famous riders by Jaclyn Goldsborough published September 2, 2014 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. Several photos taken behind the station of sunken stairs sparked a long discussion March 13, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook. Fort Wayne companies call historic buildings home about the Electron building and Baker Street Station by Dan Vance published January 21, 2019 in InFortWayne.com by KPC Media News Service.

Baker Street Station in downtown Fort Wayne celebrates 100 years by the The News-Sentinel published September 1, 2014 on YouTube.
Michael Galbraith, president of ARCH, Inc., shares stories and facts on the Baker Street Station, a historic Pennsylvania Railroad Station in Fort Wayne, which is celebrating 100 years in 2014.

  1. See a 1996 photo of the refurbished station open house from The Journal Gazette newspaperposted January 4, 2018 by Hofer and Davis, Inc. Land Surveyors on Facebook.
  2. In 1998 was added to the National Register of Historic Places from their History page.
  3. Book filled with 100 years of memories about train station by Walter B. "Skip" Sassmannshausen Jr. published January 24, 2015 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  4. Baker Street Train Station Turns 100 with video by Eric Olson published February 6, 2015 on ABC WPTA21.com TV station.
  5. Baker Street Station 1920 by Randy Harter, Fort Wayne historian and author, published June 5, 2017 in Fort Wayne Reader.
  6. See photo and history posted June 5, 2017 by Randy Harter, Fort Wayne historian and author, and long discussion September 14, 2017 included this comment "Craig Leonard: The rendering of the Pennsy station is signed by Bert Griswold, the local historian who was also the cartoonist for the Sentinel. The building was designed by Will Price of Philadelphia and is notable as his largest surviving freestanding building(he also did the train shed addition to Union Station Indianapolis. His largest works were the Traymore, Blenheim, and Marlboro hotels in Atlantic City, NJ, which were demolished when casino gambling arrived there in the 1970's. He had so much Indiana work that he had a branch office in Indy, where he did the Allison Mansion, now on the Butler campus. See George Thomas, Arts and Crafts Into Modern, published by Princeton in 2000."
  7. Recent photo October 28, 2017 posted on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Balser Rentals

Don and Marilyn Balser in business 35 years, had a Volkswagon Beetle car on a pole. February 5, 2017 and several discussions on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Baltes Building

312 South Harrison Street, built in 1895 for E. M. Baltes and Company. The Baltes Company, established in 1861, sold building supplies. The Cambray family's association with building came later in the twentieth century. The Cambray Building was bought by Don Hall's Restaurants and moved January 29, 2018. Deal gives historic Baltes building a new owner and Fort Wayne Parks department land it wants for downtown riverfront development by Kevin Kilbane published December 14, 2017 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. The Baltes Building in the 1913 photo, top right, from the, Fort Wayne, Indiana : a presentation of her resources, achievements and possibilities ... , book below was posted January 29, 2018 on Facebook by ARCH ( Architecture and Community Heritage).

Banks of Fort Wayne

Photos and discussion of various former local banks memorabilia posted January 28, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Barr Street Market

Barr Street Market
The History Center photo

In 1837, Samuel Hanna donated land to the city for the express purpose of establishing a public market. The name of market was taken from the bordering street, which was itself named for John T. Barr, who co-purchased the original 118 lots of the town of Fort Wayne. By 1855, the market was a vital part of the local economy and a market house had been constructed. In 1910, celebrated local architects, Mahurin & Mahurin designed a new concrete market complex, replacing the half-century old market. Located on the east side of Barr Street, it extended two blocks south from the City Hall Building (today known as the History Center) to Washington Boulevard. Expansion of supermarkets into the suburbs brought an end to the Barr Street Market. The northern pavilion (City Hall to Wayne Street) was demolished in 1957, followed by the southern pavilion (Wayne Street to Washington Boulevard) in 1958. In 1988, the History Center acquired the Barr Street Market and for the past three decades the museum has faithfully stewarded this oldest public space in Fort Wayne. Since 2005, the History Center and the Young Leaders of Northeast Indiana have partnered to revitalize and energize this cherished piece of our community’s shared heritage. Copied from the May 16, 2018 post with several historic photos and postcards and May 7, 2022 post by The History Centeron Facebook.

  1. A 1950 photo from THIS DAY IN HISTORY: May 31 in photos by Dan Vance posted May 31, 2018 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. Caption; 1950 - In the 1950s, the Barr Street Market was a place to buy plants and flowers as well as all kinds of homegrown fruits and vegetables. Here, on May 31, early-afternoon shoppers had their pick of merchandise. The market was open five days a week, and was at its busiest Friday afternoons and evenings and Saturday mornings.
  2. Barr Street Market full of history by Michael Hawfield from the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  3. Barr Street Market: Trading Under the Trees by Tom Castaldi September 12, 2013 on the History Center Notes & Queries blog.
  4. Historic Barr Street Farmers Market Offers Local Produce and Family Fun published July 1, 2009 with a then and now photo on The Chamber's Daily Dose blog.
  5. Photo posted and discussed August 19, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.
  6. Changes at Barr Street Market in 1957 by Corey McMaken published May 28, 2020 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

Barto's Gas Station

1201 Creighton Avenue, 1930 to 2014, a block west of the old S. F. Bowser & Company plant (in 2014 the Fort Wayne Police Department Headquarters). Tom Barto closes the family station after 84 years at the intersection of Creighton Avenue and Oliver Street. The first Fort Wayne filling station opened in 1915 from a 1921 newspaper article. See video below and read their story Family-run service station shuts its doors by Paul Wyche published September 20, 2014 in The Journal Gazette newspaper. Obituary of John Eugene Barto, of the Barto family who owned and operated Barto’s gas station of Fort Wayne was posted July 28, 2022 on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook. John E. Barto January 28, 1933 – July 17, 2022 obituary at Dignity Memorial.

Family-run service station shuts its doors from The Journal Gazette on Vimeo.

Baseball

Baseball’s first professional league game, 150 years ago posted Jul 6, 2022 This story originally aired: May. 4, 2021 FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA) - by Daniel Beals on YouTube.
May 4 is a special day in baseball, especially here in 21Country. A monument marks a historic site at Camp Allen Park, alongside the St. Marys River. “You could argue that Fort Wayne was part of the first professional sports league in America, which is kind of cool,” sports historian Blake Sebring told us. Sebring has literally written the book on sports history in Fort Wayne. “The Kekiongas were a club team in Fort Wayne,” he said, “they had a little bit of a reputation in the midwest as being a good team.” In 1871, they were invited to join the National Association of Professional Baseball Players. A city in Ohio was slated to make history that day. But Mother Nature had other plans.

  1. Northeast Indiana Baseball Association Collection of over 100 photographs is at the Allen County Public Library Digital Collections at the Allen County Public Library. About this collection: Northeast Indiana Baseball Association (formerly Fort Wayne Oldtimers' Baseball Association) Collection consists of their quarterly publications: “Newsletter” (1999-2001) and “Line drives” (2002-present), as well as their “Hall of Fame awards banquet” annual brochure.
  2. See our section on Fort Wayne Daisies, League Park, Kekionga Baseball Ground, Kekionga Baseball Team, Parkview Field, Fort Wayne TinCaps and Fort Wayne Wizards.
  3. Pro baseball began in Cincinnati in 1869 Part of the BASEBALL HISTORY series ,written by Matt Rothenberg at the National Baseball Hall of Fame
  4. Fort Wayne baseball first played May 4, 1871 on our Timeline.
  5. Kekionga Base Ball Grounds and 1871 Fort Wayne Kekiongas Statistics at Baseball Reference.com.
  6. 1871 Fort Wayne Kekiongas season on Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia
  7. Baseball’s First League Game: May 4, 1871 by John Thorn, the Official Historian for Major League Baseball, posted Feb 7, 2012 on The MLB.com/Blog of Official MLB Historian John Thorn. The blog includes an image of the nine players with their names titled Kekionga of Fort Wayne, Indiana and image of a clipping of the Fort Wayne Daily Gazette, May 6, 1871 newspaper.
  8. Fort Wayne Kekiongas in the Archives of Baseball History Daily.
  9. Fort Wayne Sports History: Kekiongas help start the National League by Blake Sebring published June 27, 2013 in The News-Sentinel newspaper
  10. Indiana: The Birthplace of Pro Baseball posted August 9, 2018 on OrangeBean.
  11. Spy Run’s 1896 Baseball Club photo and discussion September 14, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.
  12. Baseball in Fort Wayne, from a minipage written for children by Richard Battin an archived May 27, 1992 Summit City History Notes article on The News-Sentinel newspaper
  13. Baseball in Fort Wayne a book by Chad Gramling, an officer in NEIBA - Northeast Indiana Baseball Association. NEIBA has a Hall of Fame.
  14. Colored Giants African American baseball team played from 1907 thru 1949 is discussed in our African American section.
  15. See our section on the Fort Wayne Daisies womens baseball was popular in Fort Wayne and were league champions from 1952 to 1954.
  16. Fort Wayne Franchise History posted August 30, 2011 at MILB.com.
  17. THE LAST WORD: Souder article details history of professional baseball in Fort Wayne by Kerry Hubartt published April 22, 2019 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. Former 3rd District congressman Mark Souder and local baseball historian wrote an in-depth article about Fort Wayne’s professional baseball history in the semi-annual Old Fort News (Volume 82, No. 1), which is a publication of the Fort Wayne/Allen County Historical Society. It’s called Hugh McCulloch & the Origins of Professional Baseball.
  18. Monument at Fort Wayne park marks first-ever baseball game with photos of monument by: WANE Staff Reports posted: May 3, 2017. updated: May 3, 2017 at CBS WANE-TV NewsChannel 15.
  19. Monument to mark site of 1871 pro baseball game Ceremony will be held Thursday evening at Camp Allen Park by Blake Sebring published May 3, 2017 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  20. On May 20, 2017, with the help of City Councilman Geoff Paddock and the Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department, Griggs and the Northeast Indiana Baseball Association unveiled a permanent monument on the spot of the game in Camp Allen Park where the first major league baseball game was played. After the Civil War, the Fort Wayne Kekiongas baseball team formed in 1866, and in 1869 the team played the Cincinnati Red Stockings, who were the first team in the country with paid professional players. The Red Stockings won easily 86-8 then won the rematch later that season 41-7. That may not sound like a very important beginning, but the Kekiongas and Fort Wayne were hugely important to the start of professional baseball and later became hosts of the first professional league game ever played. Copied from Fort Wayne Sports History First pitch of pro baseball thrown in city by Blake Sebring published March 25, 2020 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.
  21. Fort Wayne's baseball dynasty ended 60 years ago Red Braden's teams dominated nationally and internationally includes list of major league teams that played in Fort Wayne since 1920 by Blake Sebring published August 17, 2017 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  22. June 15, 2022 several photos from The History Center were posted on Facebook.

Bass Foundry and Machine Works

Built by John Bass. Bass Foundry Materials, Fort Wayne, Indiana at The Genealogy Center. Minute book - Bass Foundry and Machine Company, Minutes of the board of directors, 1919-1955, including dissolution proceedings in full Archive.org. December 6, 2013 photo and May 1, 2016 photo of the last of the foundry torn down by Daniel Baker on Facebook.

Bass Mansion

See Brookside.

Back to top

Bates Tombstone Yards

At Columbia and Lafayette Streets, someone vandalized a valuable stone in the June 16, 1907 article in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

Battle of Kekionga

There is an historical marker Harmar's Defeat in the Lakeside neighborhood. See 2017 book The Bones of Kekionga by Jim Pickett, a retired teacher, that blends a historical and fictional depiction of what really happened during the 1790 Battle of Kekionga between American General Josiah Harmar and Miami Chief Little Turtle. Copied from Driven by city history Driver's education course includes tours of downtown by Austin Candor published August 22, 2017 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

B & B Loan

America's great pawn shop 67th anniversary on January 1, 2013

Belmonte Stores

Local "dime" store chain went out of business when the big box stores came to town. Discusssed August 25, 2017 with photo of store locations on shopping bag posted November 27, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook

Berghoff Brewery

Herman Berghoff Brewrey with employees
The History Centerphoto on Facebook

A most German town is an apt description of Fort Wayne during the late 19th century and along with that heritage came the demand for German beer. One German family to answer this demand was the Berghoff family. The Berghoff Brewery was established in April 1887 by the Berghoff brothers: Gustav, Henry, Hubert and Herman. They brewed German beers with the names, Dortmunder, Salvator and Bock, that reflected their Germanic homeland. Berghoff survived the era of Prohibition by making soft drinks, but by the time beer production resumed in 1933, the Berghoff family had sold most of their interests in the business. The Falstaff Brewing Corporation of St. Louis purchased the brewery in 1954; in December 1988 it was acquired by the S&P Company of California. In January 1990, the brewery closed its doors for the final time. The closure of the former Berghoff plant, Fort Wayne’s last major brewery, brought an end to the tradition of large-scale beer production in our city. Quote and one of 20 photos copied from an April 8, 2019 post by The History Centeron Facebook. See Berghoff Brewery history of the Berghoff's on FortWayneBeer.com and History on BerghoffBeer.com. See also A look into Fort Wayne beer history by Jaclyn Goldsborough published December 26, 2013 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. See Lafe Gunther driving the beer delivery wagon and Chauncey Relue with delivery wagon photo in Comments to photo posted April 20, 2017 onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook. Photo of their billboard sign from the 1940s by John Vachon at The Library of Congressposted April 5, 2019 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook

Berghoff Gardens

Discussion with photos December 31, 2016 and post cards discussion February 3, 2017on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Besancon

Besancon is a French settlement east of New Haven and Fort Wayne. Celebration at Besancon discussed in a newspaper article May 31, 1906 in the The Journal Gazette newspaper page 1 and page 3 reprinted on pages 82-84 in the March 2017 Allen County Lines quarterly publication of the Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana Volume 41 Number 3. See Besancon in our Towns of Allen County.

Beside Still Waters Greenhouse and Log Cabin Retreat

Website: http://besidestillwaterslogcabinretreat.com/ or Facebook page

A 30-by-50-foot log cabin, made of squared-off tulip tree logs dating from at least the 1850s and likely used by federal Indian agents engaged in removing native tribes from Indiana. It is a log cabin getaway spot run by Klare Stech that ended up on more than 40 acres of land in Cedar Creek Township at 18017 Devall Road outside Spencerville. It used to be on land that had been a turkey farm off Maysville Road near St. Peter Evangelical Lutheran Church, which traces its founding to 1838. Information copied from website and Retreat into the past 1800s cabin rented out to lodgers after years of restoration work by Rosa Salter Rodriguez published March 17, 2013 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

Bicentennial Tree

The 200+ year old Bicentennial Tree has a 1797-1987 plaque on Baker Street in downtown Fort Wayne, just south of Parkview Field. It is 14 feet, 4 inches in circumference from Fort Wayne's Centennial Oak Tree published November 1, 2022 by TreeMasters, Inc. It was discussed May 22, 2022 on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook. Called John Hancock Oak by Waymarking.com is described as a 200+ year old bicentennial year tree with a marker just south of Parkview Field on Baker Street between Fairfield and Harrison Streets by the Baker Street train station parking lot. The marker states: 1787-1987 The National Arborists Association and The International Society of Arboriculture jointly recognize this significant tree in this bicentennial year as having lived here at the time of the signing of our constitution Presented by: Maxwell Tree Expert Company. Photo and discussion March 28, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook. There is a former old Apple Tree with lots of local lore too! A May 22, 2022 Facebook post by ACRES Land Trust shows how ACRES staff learned how to use a borer tool that safely takes a section of wood from a tree that shows you can age the tree and observe how much it grew each year!

Bicentennial Woods Preserve

Bicentennial Woods Preserve is an ACRES Land Trust Nature Preserve in Perry Township. Their web page states: Purchase of these 80 acres was made possible by Mary Ellen Arnold in 1994. Over 2 miles of trails. ... The property was acquired to honor Fort Wayne's Bicentennial in 1994. Towering oaks, hickories and sycamore, some more than 200 years old, dominate the woods.

Birkmeier & Sons Monument Co., Inc.

Founded in 1880 by John G. Birkmeier, a Delphos, Ohio teacher who started the business as a way to increase his income while raising six children. In the first few decades after its founding, larger memorial monuments were set using a horse-drawn cart with an elaborate system of pulleys.

Originally located along the banks of the Miami-Erie Canal in Delphos, Ohio, John G. Birkmeier’s grandson, Alexander C. Birkmeier expanded the business to Fort Wayne, Indiana selling cemetary monuments and headstones from his bicycle and sending orders to the Delphos-based operation. In 1927 he built a home for the Fort Wayne business to simplify operations for the family. That same Spanish Eclectic-style building is still used today and is located at 2323 W. Main Street in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Located directly across the street from the city's largest cemetery, Lindenwood Cemetery, the building sat on the main highway leading west out of Fort Wayne. The route of U.S. 24 was later moved south of the building which sits on the old bed of the Wabash and Erie Canal. Read the rest of their history at www.birkmeier.com/?page=history

Black Swamp

See the Great Black Swamp

BlackStone Building

Built in 1927 at 112 W. Washington Blvd. See Blackstone Building web site and   Blackstone Building (Fort Wayne, Indiana) for history on Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopediawith copy of 1987 application to the National Historic Register added in 1988 and to the Local Historic Register in 1989.  

Back to top

Blue Cast Mineral Water Sanitarium and Magic Springs

Woodburn, Indiana. 21412 Bluecast Road, Woodburn, IN 46797. Blue Cast Springs History by Tom Castaldi and more on ACRES Land Trust web site. Advertisement is shown at Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana. Blue Cast Nature Preserve an 87 acre property became the 5,000th acre of nature preserved by ACRES Land Trust December 27, 2012. It contains deep ravines, over 3,000 feet of frontage along the Maumee River, a heronry - a large group of active blue heron nests - and a mature forest. Several springs on the property have water with a blue cast that was so popular in 1902-1905 it was bottled and sold throughout the United States for "magnetic, invigorating and curative powers." A luxurous health spa located on the property in 1913 to capitalize on the water's popularity and scenic beauty. Information from a December 2012 ACRES Land Trust letter. Newest Nature Preserve Harbors Ghosts video by Eric Olson published January 3, 2014 on ABC WPTA21.com TV station21Country video. See advertisement posted April 6, 2017 by Indiana Historical Bureauon Twitter.

ACRES trust adding 2 preserves in region 130 combined acres are near Woodburn and east of Angola March 13, 2013 by Vivian Sade of Journal Gazette - Two environmentally significant properties in northeast Indiana have been added to the state’s oldest and largest land trust, officials of a land trust company said. ... Blue Cast Springs includes 87 acres of upland forest, floodplain, ravines and 30-foot bluffs overlooking about 3,000 feet of Maumee River frontage, just north of Woodburn.

Event Details [DNR] Nature Trust announces completion of 2 NE Indiana projects

Blue Light Special

In 1966, the famous “Blue Light Special” was invented by a Kmart manager in Fort Wayne, Indiana, who was seeking a way to make it easier for his customers to find the Christmas wrapping paper that he was clearing; the Blue Light Special went on to be adopted chainwide and become an American icon. Copied from Kmart Corporation on Encyclopdia.com. Similar to Kmart Corporation on Company-Histories.com and In the Aisle of Blue Light by James Surowiecki, May 6, 2001 on the NewYorker.com. Another page says Kent Bartell a 24-year-old assistant manager of a Kmart store in Fort Wayne, Ind., in December 1965 from Kent, Ohio, Man Recalls Inventing Kmart `Blue Light Special' on highbeam.com. This was posted September 4, 2022 and started a lengthy discussion on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook. A similar page is Attention Kmart Shoppers by Alex Artaud postd Sep 1, 2001 on svconline. However, other websites claim the First Kmart Blue Light Special was flashed on Colfax Avenue posted September 2, 2015 and September 4, 2022 on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook saying I have this on no less of an authority than Bob Anderson, one of the Kmart workers who conceived the blue-light idea. It took place 30 years ago at the first Kmart store in the Denver area, No. 4101 at 7325 W. Colfax Avenue. The information comes from page 165 in the book "Amole One More Time" by Author Gene Amole, published October 8, 1992 shown below and mentioned in the video also below.

Page 165 Amole, one more time by Amole, Gene, 1923- Publication date 1998 on

At the 1:40 minute mark this video claims the 1992 Amore book shown above says it was invented in Colorado. The History of the Kmart Blue Light Special - “Attention Kmart Shoppers” posted Feb 22, 2021 by Retail Rewindon YouTube
Beginning in 1965, possibly an idea created by menswear department manager Bob Anderson, Kmart became known for their Blue Light Specials. A Blue Light Special was a random announcement of a sale highlighted by a rotating blue light and an announcement via the intercom system. The Blue Light Special was successful for a couple of decades but as Kmart began struggling by 2000, the Blue Light Special made a couple of comebacks in hopes of rekindling nostalgia and memories of what Kmart once was.

Blume, Martin, Jr., Farm

7311 Flutter Road, Martin Blume Sr. born in Germany, immigrated to the United States with his parents in 1835. In 1863 Martin Sr. moved to Allen County and acquired a large section of land, which he cleared and farmed until he retired. He sold 157 acres of land in 1878 to his son Martin, Jr.. Brief post May 6, 2017 on You know you've lived in Fort Wayne too long when... Private Facebook groupmentions this property has a National Register of Historic Places Registion Form including 8 photos and on page 8 mentions the large two story brick Italianate house of Henry Young on Trier Road that dates to 1885, the 1865 two story Italianate house of William Shordon on Maysville Road and 1880’s brick Victorian Jacob J. Vonderau farm house on Wheelock Road.

Bob Inn

Bob's Gateway Inn, now the Dugout on Fairfield across from Packard Park discussed August 7, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook

Bookstores

Browse Some Bookstores in Fort Wayne by Shelley G. posted November 11, 2011 on Visit Fort Wayneblog.

Bottles

Who thought old bottles found in strange places could be interesting history?

Dewy’s Bottle Museum (antique bottles found) posted Jun 24, 2022 by Daniel Beals on YouTube.
Dewy began researching county archives, connecting with other bottle hunters over the internet, to learn where forgotten dumping grounds once were. “All old dumps are located behind, or near water and cemeteries,” Dewy learned, “around railroads they’d also dump, because of old railroad stations, they’d throw their trash somewhere so they would just throw it on a hill or anywhere and just bury it.” His most interesting trip, was to an old privy. He tells us he has only been lucky enough to take part in one dig so far. “If you don’t know what a privy is… it’s a place where the outhouse was,” Dewy said, “you dig into these holes and find glass where they put their outhouses at, because that’s where they put their trash at.” “It tells a story of that family, or whoever was there,” he finished. Copied from the longer description also at 21Country: Dewy’s Bottle Museum on ABC WPTA21.com TV station.

Bowmar Instrument Corp.

Was formed in Fort Wayne in 1951 by Edward and Joan White. The Genealogy Center has company newsletters from 1970s. In 1971, the company introduced the first hand-held calculator called the "Bowmar Brain." See Digits are for calculating on City was home for many inventions by Michael Hawfield published December 13, 1993 by The News-Sentinel newspaper. Bowmar - "Bowmar Brain" early electronic pocket calculator 901B came out in the Autumn of 1971, with four functions and an eight-digit red LED display, for $240. - Laurie F. Slater had patent 3,886,012 May 27, 1975. Video History of Fort Wayne Business - Bowmar, Inc. by Al Crain-Shick on Indiana NewsCenter. See January 9, 2017 discussion on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook. Bowmar invented the calculator from Datamath Calculator Museum.

Back to top

Bowser Building

Bowser gasoline & oil equipment for the home garage by S.F. Bowser & Co. Inc. Publication date c.1920 on Archive.org

1302 East Creighton Avenue, last used as headquarters for the Fort Wayne Police Deaprtment was orginally the headquarters of the S. F. Bowser & Company, founded in 1885 by the man who invented the world's first self-measuring pump. Sylvanus Freelove Bowser was one of the city's top three or four industrialists in the early 20th century.

  1. S.F. Bowser & Co. ; Employees, S.F. Bowser & Co. ; Periodicals, and S.F. Bowser & Co. ; History searches at The Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
  2. Bowser appears over 300 times in searches in the Allen County Public Library Digital Collections at the Allen County Public Library
  3. Bowser appears many times in discussions with photos and history on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook
  4. Bowser : designers, engineers, manufacturers of equipment for receiving, storing, metering, distributing, filtering, dispensing and merchandising, gasoline, oils, and similar liquids for commercial and industrial purposes by  S. F. Bowser & Company Publication date [19--] on Internet Archive
  5. The Bowser booster (Volume yr. 1918) S. F. Bowser & Co Oil Tanks, Pumps, and Storage Systems - S.F. Bowser and Co Publication date 1915 on Internet Archive
  6. Bowser Buildings Update on Community Development City of Fort Wayneweb site.
  7. Discussed August 18, 2015and a photo of the sixth floor Pearl Harbor Memorial on August 21, 2015 on You know you've lived in Fort Wayne too long when... Private Facebook group.
  8. The 'Bowser Building' may soon be gone, but history won't forget the man and the empire he created with photos by Kevin Leininger published April 21, 2016 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  9. Bowser Booster publication photos February 25, 2017 and March 1, 2017 photos, photo of 1919 name tag and more posted May 30, 2019 with more discussions in Search on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.
  10. Residents protest planned demolition of the historic Bowser Pump buildings on Creighton Ave. Neighbors would like to see the buildings reused and repurposed. by Kevin Kilbane published March 9, 2017 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  11. Contractors to begin demolishing historic Bowser buildings by Jacob Burbrink published March 15, 2017 on ABC WPTA21.com TV station. Work begins to raze Bowser buildings Y to take over land for outdoor use by Dave Gong published March 17, 2017 on The Journal Gazette newspaper.
  12. Demolition of former police headquarters on hold by CBS WANE-TV NewsChannel 15published March 17, 2017 with a March 18, 2017 discussion by ARCH ( Architecture and Community Heritage)on Facebook.
  13. Salvage materials photos were posted April 5, 2017 and April 12, 2017 on The Wood Shack Architectural Antiques on Facebook.
  14. April 18, 2017 post on tear down with photo and discussion by Randy Harter, Fort Wayne historian and author, on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.
  15. First Gas Pump and Service Station with photos and history at American Oil & Gas Historical Society.
  16. RTV6 - WRTV Indianapolis TV August 8, 2017 posted a 30 second video of the Bowser Pump history on their Facebook page.
  17. Bowser, Man and Building S. F. Bowser, inventor of the automobile gas pump, built his 1917 company headquarters in Fort Wayne with an eye for quality and workmanship. His legacy there, however, is a fading one. Published May 18, 2017 by Indiana Landmarks.

Brateman Brothers

Sold police uniforms and many leather items. Discussed August 6, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebookand discussed August 8, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Breweries

See Berghoff Brewery and Centlivre Brewery. Fort Wayne breweries on HoosierBeerStory.com has map with 14 locations and links to more information on the Hoosier Beer web site. Craft Beer series A Four-Part Series on Beer in The News-Sentinel newspaper. A look into Fort Wayne beer historypart 1 of 4 published December 26, 2013, Behind the scenes with Mad Anthony's brewmaster part 2 of 4 published December 27, 2013, Summit City Brewerks a long time in the making part 3 of 4 published December 28, 2013, and part 4 of 4 Fort Wayne home brewers find great resource at local supply shop published January 2, 2014 all by Jaclyn Goldsborough in The News-Sentinel newspaper. More brewing history at IndianaBeer, OldBreweries, FortwayneBeerand Summit City Brewery by Jeff Johnson on Fort Wayne Beer.com. There is a 2011 book called Hoosier Beer: Tapping into Indiana Brewing History by Bob Ostrander, Derrick Morris on Google Books. Fort Wayne is mentioned several times. Strasbourg Brewing Co. opened in 1882 and closed in 1904 it was open for 22 years in New Haven owned by Mack and Gabet. From Strasbourg Brewing Co. – IN 119. Discussed January 19, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Broadway Corridor

Broadway business association has completed improvement projects over the last several years. Local businesses, such as Mad Anthony Brewing and George's International Grocery, and attorney Steve Shine, whose law office is on the Broadway Plaza. www.broadwayfortwayne.com.1014-1016 Broadway row of c. 1890 commercial buildings were purchased in 2010 by ARCH ( Architecture and Community Heritage)

Broadway Explosion

In February 3, 1966 around 10-10:30 a.m. near Kinsmoor and Broadway,  just north of Goutys Service Station, 2 blocks north of the Bluffton Road bridge, an explosion blew a house off its foundation possibly into the St.Marys River. Condensed from Comments January 16, 2017, November 22, 2017, December 23, 2017, April 19, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook. Later in 1966 on August 23 a natural gas explosion occurred at Phelps Dodge also discussed several times. For more fires and explosions see Fire Police City County Federal Credit Union calendar on the Wayback Machine.

Broadway State Bank

Broadway State Bank --Fort Wayne, Indiana filmed August 11, 1976 when it was The Palace and The Scorpion dancing pool hall live music bar business posted November 11, 2016 by the Allen County Public Library on YouTube.
This clip is a short piece that is part of a longer series of Fort Wayne landmarks documented on open reel video tape in the 1970s. The series was made possible by the Fort Wayne Public Library, now the Allen County Public Library. This segment was recorded August 11, 1976 at 1930 Broadway in Fort Wayne, IN.
Camera and Editing by Steve Fortriede.

Located at the at the corner of Broadway and Taylor Street. George Kelly, not George Machine Gun Kelly robbed the Broadway State Bank August 20, 1930. Walter E. Helmke, Mayor Paul Helmke's grandfather was the prosecuting attorney on the case after Kelly was arrested in Chicago and brought to Fort Wayne for trial. It was the top story in local newspapers for many days. See SUMMIT CITY HISTORY NOTES The straight story on 'Machine Gun' Kelly by Richard Battin published by The News-Sentinel newspaper. Photos and more were posted and discussed August 8, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Broadway Theatre

1926 Broadway Theatre
The Chateau on Broadway 1926 photo

2441 Broadway. June 11, 2022 photo posted on Facebook: This was the theater as it stood in 1926. Opened as the Broadway Theater on November 5, 1923. It was renamed Indiana Theater in 1934. From the 1970’s this theater last operated as Cinema Blue, an X-rated theater which closed in 1985. The building became home to a restaurant in 1998, called the Catablu Gourmet American Grill. In May 2009, it became a jazz club known as The Philmore on Broadway. By 2017 it was an entertainment & events venue. And coming in 2022 it will re-open as the newly renovated Chateau On Broadway! The Philmore on Broadway at CinemaTreasures.org has an October 9, 2009 comment with a decent amount of history such as: The newly built Broadway Theater was to develop a reputation for showing the best silent movies in a pleasing atmosphere. The building had a stage, an auditorium that had an arched ceiling which provided better ventilation and acoustic properties, contained an orchestra pit and three sets of balconies, it could seat 600 people, the ladies room provided space for parking baby buggies, and the screen was made of the best gold fiber. The film featured at the Grand Opening of the Broadway Theater was Back Home and Broke starring Thomas Meighan, a poplar leading actor of the time. Everyone attending on opening day was given a rose (New Broadway Theater). Referencing two newspaper articles: “New Broadway Theater.” The News-Sentinel 3 November 1923. Pond, Cindy. “Indiana Theater Closes Nov. 9.” Journal Gazetter 27 October 1969. See more local Theaters such as the Broadway Theatre, Clyde Theatre, Embassy Theatre, Holiday Theater, Jefferson Theatre, Palace Theatre, Rialto Theatre, and Paramount Theatre.

Back to top

Brookside - Bass Mansion

Episode 166: Bass Mansion published December 20, 2021 by Granite Ridge Builderson YouTube
One of Fort Wayne's hidden architectural gems: the Bass Mansion, located on the campus of the University of Saint Francis. Join the BTS crew as we explore the ornate styles of the mansion, plus a bit of football action with Johnny the Saint Francis Cougar!

Brookside wins prize for outstanding restoration an Indiana Landmarks YouTube video. Published on May 1, 2013. Their About statement: Rather than opt for modern updating, the University of Saint Francis in Fort Wayne completed an all-out $4.5 million restoration of historic Brookside, earning the 2013 Cook Cup for Outstanding Restoration.

Brookside was finished in 1891. John Bass, a successful businessman, ran the Bass Foundry and Machine Works, which covered 20 acres of land on South Hanna Street. Brookside was considered the family's country getaway; their city home was at West Berry Street and Fairfield Avenue. In 1902, the original Brookside burned in a fire sparked by a gas explosion. By 1903, the home was completely rebuilt in stone, concrete and steel. It has six bedrooms for family and guests and three for servants; 13 fireplaces; three staircases; and a ballroom on the third floor with a mural in the skylight depicting the nine dancing Muses of Greek mythology. In 1944, the Sisters of Saint Francis of Perpetual Adoration bought the home for $60,000 to house St. Francis College, which had originally been in Lafayette. The house served as the college and living space for the sisters until 1948, when expansion began with construction of Trinity Hall. Throughout the restoration of the home, the school took care to preserve the historic integrity of the building while modernizing it. From Wearing its holiday finest, former Bass Mansion on USF campus open to public The Christmas in the Castle event takes place this weekend and next. By Cindy Larson of The News-Sentinel Wednesday, November 28, 2012.

  1. Designed by Marshall S. Mahurin.
  2. Brookside the Bass Mansion - For All Time "The Sisters of Saint Francis of Perpetual Adoration bought the home and 65 acres south of Spring Street from the Bass family in 1944.
  3. Tours of Brookside at University of Saint Francis. They moved what was then Saint Francis College from Lafayette, Indiana to Fort Wayne. The mansion served as the college library until the university opened the Lee and Jim Vann Library in August 2006."
  4. Brookside - The Bass Mansion Renovation a WFWA TV39 Fort Wayne PBS Special | 57m 4s Brookside, also known as the Bass Mansion, was added to the National Register for Historic Places in 1982. Renovations on the former residence of industrialist John Henry Bass were completed in 2009-2010. The mansion is currently an administrative building on the University of Saint Francis. Aired: 10/01/10 Rating: NR. Description of Brookside the Bass Mansion Renovation highlights of the rennovation.
  5. Vorderman Photography has a great shot on his Facebook page.
  6. How many grotesques do you see? on Hidden Gems blog from Indiana Landmarks.
  7. Saint Francis Kicks Off “Christmas in the Castle” By Scott Sarvay of Indiana NewsCenter December 2, 2011.
  8. Photos of Bass Mansion - University of Saint Francis at Conrad Schmitte Studios Inc.
  9. Photos and discussion February 4, 2017, National Register plaque and more June 13, 2017, and July 26, 2017 short history post by Randy Harter, Fort Wayne historian and author, on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.
  10. Brookside Mansion, a working historic home by Cindy published May 9, 2017 on Traveling Adventures of a Farm Girl blog.
  11. Discussed September 24, 2017 and Randy Harter, Fort Wayne historian and author, posted a photo September 25, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company

Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company provides insurance for churches and related ministries. Founded in Grabill in 1917, Brotherhood Mutual is a provider of property, liability, workers compensation, commercial auto and foreign travel insurance for churches and related ministries. The company, which serves more than 40,000 churches and ministries in 43 states and the District of Columbia, has been recognized as one of the best places to work in Indiana by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce for five straight years.

Brown, W.B., Company

From ARCH Facebook March 30, 2013 Event World-class manufacturer of Arts and Crafts Mission style furniture, electric lighting fixtures, and store interiors from 1906 to 1923, the W.B. Brown Company, known locally as the "Chandelier Factory", was one of northern Indiana's most successful design-manufacture firms during the peak of the American Arts & Crafts movement of the early 20th Century. March 30, 2013 brochure on ARCH ( Architecture and Community Heritage) on Facebook.

Bun Candy Bar

Maple, vanilla, or caramel covered in unsalted peanuts and milk chocolate. Started in the 1920s, was made by the local Wayne Bun Candy Company, later bought out by Clark Bar America of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, then Minneapolis, Minnesota based Pearson acquired the brand in 1998. See the November 4, 2012 and May 21, 2013 discussions of the candy bar and building onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook, Wikipedia and lots of comments on Candyblog March 10, 2006 Pearson’s Buns. March 24, 2017 discussion and 1923 advertisement posted August 26, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Burger Chef

Locations discussed March 23, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Bursley and Company

501 South Clinton Street. 1913 print photo on Allen County Public Library Digital Collections at the Allen County Public Library. Photo and discussion April 25, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

Byron Health Center

Byron Health Center has its roots as the Allen County Poor House, built in 1853 in the Waynedale area. In 1916, the facility was moved to its current location and Fort Recovery, an anti-tuberculosis tent hospital was established. This later became known as Irene Byron Hospital. The facility was named to honor Irene Byron, who died while serving her country in World War I and was an executive secretary of the Anti-Tuberculosis League. Copied from Our History page of the Byron Health website. Formerly at 12371 Lima Road there was an unmarked cemetery discussed on our cemetery page.. 1938 photos of the Main Building, Sunny-side, and the West Hall Girl's Building from the Joan Hostetler Collection at The Indiana Album were posted June 12, 2019 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook. New facility at Lake Avenue and Beacon Street broke ground in 2018, was formerly at 12101 Lima Road. Named for Irene Byron, the land was a well known home to a large county-owned facility for tuberculosis patients between 1919 and 1976. One proposed move was to Wells Street. Byron Health Center move to old YWCA campus could boost sale of county land by Kevin Leininger published February 8, 2017 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. Byron Health breaks ground on Lake site Center won't just be 'another nursing home' by Rosa Salter Rodriquez published October 11, 2018 in The Journal Gazette newspaper. The original grounds on Lima Road had at least one graveyard. In 2020, the county hired American Locating Services of Indianapolis, to use ground-penetrating radar to look for caskets or bodies according to the newspaper article County to look for possible graves Commissioners hire surveyor to study Byron property by Rosa Salter Rodriguez published February 22, 2020 in The Journal Gazette newspaper. It also stated: The need for the study came a few months ago when a longtime area resident told county officials he remembered seeing a second graveyard on the site when he was a teenager in the 1960s to 1970s.

Back to top

Page updated: