1870-1879 Timeline of Allen County, Indiana

Fort Wayne city directories start in 1858 with business and city resident addresses. Most of the early directories have the name R. S. Robertson written on them indicating they were owned or donated to the library collection by Colonel Robert S. Robertson. The directories add more information each year. Be sure to check the front and back of city directories for sections such as Contents, Street Directory, Sketch of the City, Business Directory, population information, street name changes, newspapers, schools, churches, U.S. Post Office Directory, New States and Territories, and sections such as Names and Changes of Addresses Received Too Late For Regular Publication. County resident addresses are often found in the back of later city directories.

1870

1870, February 3 - the 15th Amendment is ratified, guaranteeing voting rights for all male citizens without regard to race.

1870, February 9 - the U.S. Weather Bureau was established. Joseph Henry Secretary of the Smithsonian was the father of weather service. From Februry 9, 2015 American History Museum Tweet. See more with photos at February 5, 2015 U.S. National Weather Service (NWS) on Facebook.

1870, February 10 - President Grant signed the U.S. Weather Bureau into law.

1870, March 30 - 15th Ammendment is formally adopted, giving African American men the right to vote.

1870, June 25 - Calvin Thomas, the census enumerator, started recording the 9th U.S. Federal Census in Aboite Township.

1870, June 26 - the federal government declared Christmas to be a national holiday in the United States.

1870, September 13 - Formation of the Old Settlers Association printed meeting highlights and lists of names in the Fort Wayne Daily Gazette newspaper, page 4. Reprinted in the September 2013 Allen County Lines quarterly publication of the Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana pages 18-19.

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1871

There is no separate 1871 city directory, it is a combined 1870-1871 city directory.

1871: One of the city's first women's organizations, the Allen County Women's Rights Association, is organized to support allowing women to vote. Noted suffrage leader Susan B. Anthony speaks twice in Fort Wayne by 1878. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1871, May 4 - the first professional baseball game is played in Fort Wayne. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper. Hometown Kekiongas defeated the Forest City club of Cleveland 2-0 in the first game of the National Association, a player-organized predecessor to the National League. Thirty-seven years later, Indianapolis native Albert Von Tilzer wrote the music for what would become baseball's iconic song – "Take Me Out to the Ball Game." Von Tilzer was responsible for hit songs through the early 1950s. From February 17, 2016 Facebook post by Indiana Historical Society.

  1. See also Local baseball group wants monument on historical game siteResearching the site has been tricky by Blake Sebring published November 28, 2016 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  2. Monument to mark site of 1871 pro baseball game by Blake Sebring published May 2, 2017 on The News-Sentinel newspaper.
  3. Monument at Fort Wayne park marks first-ever baseball game by WANE Staff Reports published May 3, 2017 on WANE-TV NewsChannel 15.
  4. See May 4, 2017 post by TinCaps on Facebook, and First Major League Baseball Game: May 4, 1871 by Patrick Mondout on Baseball Chronology. Bill Griggs, president of the local chapter of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR)found the site and played a role in getting it recognized with a monument.
  5. Featured in 20 questions with Bill Griggs by Jeff Wiehe in the May 2017 issue of Fort Wayne Magazine.
  6. First game in major league history on Baseball Reference.

1872

1872, January 6 - The city's first horse-drawn streetcars go into service.

1872, November 5 - Susan B. Anthony votes in the presidential election and is later fined $100 at the famous 1872 trial where Miss. Anthony was found guilty of ‘voting while female.’ Read her letter at Susan B. Anthony: I’ve Gone and Done It by JD Thomas published December 16 , 2013 at Accessible Archives blog.

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1873

1873 - Manual of practical housekeeping (1873) - [Kimball, Laura A.], [from old catalog] comp, The Household Treasure Archive.org ebook.

1873 the Catholic Cemetery was established by Bishop Joseph Dwenger.

1873 Young's Greenhouse opens for business. Now a 4th and 5th generation business.

1873, September 18 - when the banking firm of Jay Cooke and Company, a firm heavily invested in railroad construction, closed its doors, a major economic panic swept the nation. 89 of the country's 364 railroads crashed into bankruptcy, 18,000 businesses failed in two years. By 1876 unemployment reached 14% and the depression lasted until 1879. Read more about The Panic of 1873 on American Experience PBS.

1873, September 20 - Panic sweeps NY Stock Exchange in wake of railroad bond defaults and bank failures.

1873, Dec. 5 - Fort Wayne, the summit city by Williams J. L. (Jesse Lynch), 1807-1886, reprint of a letter written by Jesse L. Williams to the Fort Wayne Gazette in an Archive.org ebook.

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1874

1874, March 26 - poet Robert Frost born this day.

1875

1875 the United States passes the first immigration law. FamilySearch Immigration and Naturalization Records and Research

1875: The Chicago Tribune calls Fort Wayne the most lawless city in Indiana. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1875 September 8 - Fort Wayne Weekly Sentinel has a short article hoping the city council will put the old fort property in good order by cleaning out the old well General Wayne ordered dug, as well as restoring a model of the fort, then landscaping and maintaing the property.

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1876

1876 - The city's first medical school opens, quickly followed by a rival. Six physicians and a student are arrested for robbing graves to obtain bodies to study. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1876, January 1 - Protection Engine and Hose Company Fire Station fire - Fire Police CIty County Federal Credit Union calendar.

1876, March 7 - Alexander Graham Bell receives a patent for the telephone. March 10, 1876 he made the first phone call—to his assistant Thomas Watson who was waiting in the next room. See The Library of Congress notebook entry. Eight months later, this "box" telephone is used to transmit sound between Cambridge and Salem, MA. Read more about this telephone and the transmission of sound here:http://s.si.edu/itQZG

1876, June 4 - the express train called the Transcontinental Express arrived in San Francisco, California, via the First Transcontinental Railroad, only 83 hours and 39 minutes after having left New York City.

1876, June 25 - the Seventh U.S. Cavalry, under the leadership of Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer and 210 (265?) men were defeated and killed at the Battle of Little Big Horn in Montana by Crazy Horse and his Sioux warriors. Also known as Custer's Last Stand. Private George A. Bott and Corporal John Noonan (aka John McKinney) were from Fort Wayne. See Today in History: June 25 on Library of Congress American Memory Today In History blog

1876, July 12 - Fort Wayne Weekly Sentinel newspaper article about General Custer massacre at the Little Big Horn.

1877

1877, June 18 - James Montgomery Flagg, creator of the Uncle Sam illustration, was born in Pelham Manor, New York.  Dressed in his own Uncle Sam suit, he used himself as the model for this poster and his other Uncle Sam illustrations. Learn more about Frank Leslie's newspaper at Frank Leslie’s Weekly on Accessible Archives blog.

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1878

1878, October 15 - Thomas Edison formed the Edison General Electric Light Company. April 1892 GE merged with Thomson-Houston which bought the Fort Wayne Jenny Company in August 1888. From GE’s history in Fort Wayne published February 9, 2014 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

October 19,[31?] 1878 Fort Wayne City Hospital opens. 1891 (officially 1900) renamed Hope Hospital. 1918 renamed Hope Methodist Hospital. 1922 renamed Methodist Hospital. In 1953 opened in new location as Parkview Memorial Hospital. 1990's removed Memorial from its name. March 2012 opens new Parkview Regional Medical Center at I-69 and Dupont Road. Methodist Hospital - Parkview Hospital covers early history from 1878 from Indiana Story Tellers on Archive.org Wayback Machine.

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1879

1879: The city gets its first waterworks and telephone system. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper. The first telephone book featured only one page with 54 original subscribers from the short video The History Center’s May exhibit focuses on common household items by WaneStaffReports with History Center Executive Director Todd Pelfrey published May 7, 2016 on WANE-TV NewsChannel 15.

1879 - the Fort Wayne Sentinel reported A Tale of Terror that a farmer fought a “battle for life” with a giant snake-like monster. Jacob Rishel was cutting through a grassy field after a day’s work in Jackson Township. He heard a strange, crackling noise behind him and noticed a rapidly approaching, powerful whirlwind cutting through the grass, coming straight towards him! Afraid, Rishel started sprinting through the field, though whatever it was caught up to him. Rishel discovered a huge reptile-like horned monster was chasing him. It got so close, Rishel could smell its breath. Finally, he found an abandoned reaper, struck the monster several times, and fainted straight away. Concerned friends found him hours later, passed out in the field. After he awoke, they measured the beast. Reportedly, it was 34 feet long and as thick as a man’s thigh, with 42 inch long tentacles. Rishel recovered after several days, though his hair turned snow-white overnight. From October 25, 2016and October 22, 2017 Indiana Historical Bureau post on Facebook.

1879, August - A sketch of early Fort Wayne - Robertson, Robert Stoddart, 1839-1936, originally published in the Fort Wayne Daily Gazette in August, 1879. Archive.org ebook.

1879, October 22 - Thomas Edison tested the first successful electric light bulb in his Menlo Park, New Jersey laboratory.

1879, December 24 - Fort Wayne Weekly Sentinel newspaper story about an out of control team of horses on a cold December day dashing down Calhoun Street approaching the crowded Main and Columbia Street area lined with wagons and people nearly avoided crashing, but did crash with no visible damage. From Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana.

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