1890-1899 Timeline of Allen County, Indiana

Fort Wayne city directories start in 1858 with business and city resident addresses. Public domain copies before 1923 are listed on the City Directories page and embeded within the Timeline pages.

1891 - 1892 - 1893 -1894 - 1895 -1896 - 1897 - 1898 - 1899


Fort Wayne, Indiana City Directory by R.L. Polke & Company

1890 - Streetcars came to Fort Wayne in 1871 as a way to easily get around town after the Civil War. They ran on tracks in the ground and were pulled by horses. Relying on horses came with a few problems, such as disease that would shut the whole system down. In 1890, there was a fire that killed several dozen horses in one of the stables. Copied from May 16, 1939; Fort Wayne begins transition from streetcars to buses with several Allen County Public Library photos by Adam Solarczyk posted May 16, 2022 by CBS WANE-TV NewsChannel 15.

1890 - did you ever notice highway signs don't have an apostrophe? Here is why - Since its inception in 1890, the U.S. Board on Geographic Names has discouraged the use of the possessive form—the genitive apostrophe and the “s”. The possessive form using an “s” is allowed, but the apostrophe is almost always removed. The Board's archives contain no indication of the reason for this policy. From USGS U.S. Board on Geographic Names Domestic Names - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) #18

1890 - the Indiana State Board of Health statewide survey of schools found 71% were poorly ventilated, 30% had an unsafe water supply, and 10% had no outhouse or lavatory. From Ninth annual report of the State Board of Health of Indiana, for the fiscal year ending October 31, 1890 (Indianapolis: William B. Burford, 1891). Posted May 11, 2014 by the Indiana Genenealogical Society on their Facebook page.

1890s - bald eagles nested in Indiana until the 1890s, and small numbers wintered in the state from November through March mostly along major rivers and other large bodies of water. In 1985, the Indiana Nongame and Endangered Wildlife Program began the Bald Eagle Reintroduction Program. Seventy-three eaglets (seven to eight weeks old) were obtained from Wisconsin and Alaska from 1985 through 1989 and brought to Indiana. They are now seen at Little River Wetlands Project as in this December 5, 2017 photo on the southwest side of the city and along rivers in Fort Wayne and throughout the state. Read more on Bald Eagle from Indiana Department of Natural Resources on IN.gov

1890, June 2 - the census enumerator, started recording the 10th U.S. Federal Census. January 10, 1921, a fire in the Commerce Department building, Washington, DC, destroyed most of the 1890 census. Congress ordered the destruction of the remaing records in 1933.

1890, July - photo of corner of Broadway and Jefferson posted November 25, 2017 onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

1890: The city's first football game takes place on Thanksgiving Day, won by the Electrics over the Athletics. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1890 ad for modern washing machine from Horton Manufacturing Company Fort Wayne, Indiana from Time Travelers - come back in time on Facebook.

1890, December 29 - 297 Sioux Indians were killed by federal agents and members of the 7th Cavalry at Wounded Knee Creek on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. 200 of the 297 victims were women and children.

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1891 is two parts as one sided photocopy of a damaged book second copy, with a third copy of City Directory Part 1that also goes to the Pauley surnames above then Part 2 to the end.


No city directory, there is a combined 1891-1892 directory.

1892: The city switches from horsedrawn streetcars, which started in 1871, to electric streetcars which continued until May 16, 1939 when the transition to buses began. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1892, January 1 - Ellis Island Immigrant Station opens in New York. See Topics in Chronicling America - Ellis Island on The Library of Congressor January 2, 1892 Landed On Ellis Island article on timesmachine from The New York Times newspaper.

1892, June 17 - the first shipment of three streetcars arrived on Columbia Street. Photo posted September 12, 2018 by The Landing Fort Wayne on Facebook.

1892, September 8 - the Pledge of Allegiance is published in children's magazine "The Youth's Companion." The Story of The Pledge of Allegiance to The Flag published in Volume VIII · Winter 1953 · Number 2 by the River Campus Libraries University of Rochester.

1892, October 12 - the Pledge of Allegience is recited for the first time to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Columbus's arrival in the Americas. Written by Baptist minister Francis Bellamy, who published it in Youth's Companion magazine and distributed across the country. The 1892 version was: I pledge allegiance to my flag and the Republic for which it stands — one nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. Read more from the Writer's Almanac on the October 12, 2014 History Center Notes & Queries blog.

1892, November 23 - Indiana's earliest known basketball game debuted in Evansville. From INDIANA’S EARLIEST KNOWN BASKETBALL GAMES by Chandler Lighty published November 23, 2015 on Hoosier State Chronicles Indiana's Digital Historic Newspaper Program.

1892, November 29 - the first patent for the rotary dial telephone was awarded, was first introduced in 1904, did not enter service in the Bell System until 1919, and was popular until 1962 when "Touch-Tone" technology with new "push-button dial" phones became more popular.

1892-1893 photo of Fort Wayne city council members at History Center Digital Collection on the mDON mastodon Digital Object Networkposted March 23, 2017 onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

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Fort Wayne, Indiana, city directory by R.L. Polk & Co. cn, Publication date 1893 on Archive.org

1893 Chicago World's Fair introduced electricity to Americans

1893: Old City Hall, now the home of the Allen County - Fort Wayne Historical Society, is built. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1893: Nix v. Hedden decision by the Supreme Court of the United States affirmed that the tomato should be classified as a vegetable rather than a fruit under the ordinary meaning of the words "fruit" and "vegetable," where a tomato is classified as a vegetable, instead of the botanical meaning where a tomato is a fruit. From WIkipedia.

White tail dee release
Historic Southern Indiana photo

1893 - The last reported wild deer was killed in Knox County in 1893. From 1934 to 1942, 296 deer were purchased from other states and released in Indiana through a program from the Department of Conservation (the forerunner to today's DNR). In this 1934 photo, deer are being released from crates into Ferdinand State Forest. Photo courtesy of Indiana Album Flick Family Collection. Posted May 20, 2022 by Historic Southern Indiana on Facebook and shared May 20, 2022by Indiana's Historic Pathways on Facebook.

How did deer get to Indiana? by Woody Williams posted Dec 8, 2005 on Hunt-Indiana.com. This is a copy of an OLD report on restocking of deer in Indiana.

13. Cariacus virginianus (Bodd). Virginia deer.
Newton County. Extinct. Last deer killed was twenty years ago (1874). One was seen three years ago (1891).
Jasper County. Deer killed about 1890 (Pfrimmer).
Knox County. Found at one time in countless numbers. Now only met with occasionally in the cypress swamps of this county (Chansler).
Copied from page 83 of Proceedings of the Indiana Academy of Science by Indiana Academy of Science Publication date 1894 on Archive.org . See 146 more publications of the Indiana Academy of Science on Archive.org

‘Good Ol’ Days’ of Indiana wildlife weren’t so good by Indiana Connection posted on April 21, 2022 in IN Outdoors. History of white-tailed deer in Indiana - from White-tailed Deer Biology by Indiana Department of Natural Resources has this list:

  • 1893: Last reported wild deer killed in Knox County.
  • 1934-1942: 296 deer purchased for release from Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and North Carolina.
  • 1943: Deer population estimated at 900 deer.
  • 1951: First deer season in 58 years—three days in November. (13 percent success rate.)
  • 1953-1955: 111 deer released throughout the state, with last releases in Sullivan and Ripley counties.
  • 1956: Deer trapping and relocation program began with 500 deer relocated.
  • 1975: Deer harvest near 9,000.
  • 1985: Deer harvest exceeds 32,000.

1893, February 28 - the USS Indiana was launched in Philadelphia with 10,000 people in attendance, including President Benjamin Harrison. The ship served in the Spanish-American War as part of the North Atlantic Fleet. Read more Launching of USS Indiana (BB 1), the Navy’s first battleship by NHHC published February 28, 2014 on Naval History Blog. Via February 28, 2016 Facebook post by Indiana Bicentennial Commission.

1893, June 12 - End of an Era - historian Frederick Jackson Turner delivered an academic paper saying that the American Frontier had closed based on 1890 Census data that showed that migration from the East, the building of railroads and hundreds of new towns had combined to forge a single nation from coast-to-coast.


The burgeoning interest in local history in Fort Wayne 1887-1894 - Potterf, Rex M, "
Reprinted with the special permission of the Allen County - Fort Wayne Historical Society." Archive.org

1894 - Art souvenir of representative men, public buildings, private residences, business houses - Public Library of Fort Wayne and Allen County, Cover title: Art souvenir of the Fort Wayne gazette, 1894, a photograph collection Archive.org.

1894: The city opens its first public library in a room at the city building. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

Fort Wayne up to date (1894) - describes Fort Wayne of 1894 people and businesses with advertising similar to a newspaper. Archive.org.

1894, April 14 - the editors of the Indiana Farmer wrote about soybeans: “In this country experiments are being made with the plants for forage. It remains to be seen whether it is adapted to our climate. They are not quoted in our seed catalogs.” The editors raised the legitimate question about whether soybeans could grow successfully in Indiana. The next spring Adrian A. Parsons, likely after a few years of experimentation, planted the first of successive crops of the legume on his Hendricks County farm. Parsons’ advocacy for planting soybeans earned him the moniker “the soybean crank” from his more-skeptical fellow farmers. Parsons, however, was proved correct as the crop becamemore widely grown in the 1920s and 1930s. By 1939, Indiana ranked second in the nation in soybean production with over 1.3 million acres planted. Copied from an April 14, 2019 post by the Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.

1894, June 28 - Labor Day was established as a holiday for federal employees. See photo of 1939 San Francisco parade on The making of Labor Day on the Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog.

1894, July 4 - Elwood Haynes, inventor of America's first car, took his first ride in his experimental gasoline powered automobile. On July 4, 1922, a plaque and historical monument was dedicated in Kokomo to commemorate Elwood Haynes’ first ride in his experimental gasoline powered automobile. The ride took place on July 4, 1894. This photograph of Haynes and his first automobile was taken during the monument dedication. Haynes donated the car to the Smithsonian, and it is one of the earliest made cars in the museum’s collection. Copied from a July 4, 2022 post by the Indiana State Library on Facebook. Elwood Haynes: Indiana’s Automotive Pioneer The memory of inventor, industrialist, and automotive pioneer Elwood Haynes is alive and well in his adopted hometown of Kokomo. on Indiana Landmarks.org.

December 19, 1894 Fort Wayne News newspaper had a story about run away horse wagons causing damage on Lafayette and Calhoun Streets fromthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

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1895 - Fort Wayne's Centennial celebration is one year late! City forgot its birthday, but threw a party anyway by Kevin Leininger published March 6, 1982 is online in Cityscapes in The News-Sentinel newspaper. An 1895 postcard photo and more was discussed November 29, 2017 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.

1895 - Fort Wayne Centennial. You never know where you will find photos. There are Annual message of ... , mayor of Fort Wayne, Ind. with annual reports of heads of departments of the city government for the fiscal year ending .. by Fort Wayne (Ind.) for various years on Archive.org with at least 17 Annual message of ... , mayor of Fort Wayne, Ind. online so far with old photos on various pages inside the 500 or more pages of each issue as shown by the No. 1 Engine House During Fort Wayne Centennial on page 236 below for 1901. Flipping thru the pages found photos for the fire stations and views of local parks. More is sure to be found if someone has time to look!

1895 - Fort Wayne City Library opens - eventually becomes the Allen County Public Library. See our library page with ebook, videos and more.

1895, June 1 - Ft. Wayne, Ind May 23 - A shocking accident occurred yesterday during the parade of Ringling's circus. A horse attached to a buddy standing on Columbia Street took fright at the elephants and plunged into a crowd of women and children; injuring at least 18 people and shashing six baby carriages. The dead: Mrs. Eliza LeMay, struck square in the face and died shortly afterward without regaining consciousness. The fatally injured: Mrs. Frederick Wehner had scalp wound and internally injured; will die. Harry Wehner, 3 years old, skull fractured, will die. The others are all badly bruised about the head and body, but not fatally hurt. Suits will be brought against the proprietors of the circus. Copied from the Crawfordsville, Montgomery County, Indiana Weekly Argus News June 1, 1895 page 7 in December 2017 by Karen Zach county co-ordinator for Montgomery County, INGenWeb.


Newspaper article on runaway horses

1896 - Wing & Mahurin, architects, Fort Wayne, Ind 1896 - Wing & Mahurin, drawings ... a record of a few of the many buildings erected from plans prepared by us and under our supervision, and many sketches on file in our office of public institutions, municipal buildings, schools, churches, residences, etc. ... Archive.org.

1896: Robison Park, considered the leading pleasure park in Indiana, opens seven miles north of the city at the end of a new streetcar line. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1896: Fort Wayne Professionals are affiliated with Cleveland Indians, becoming first minor-league farm team. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1896, May 9 - Fort Wayne News newspaper reports farmer Samuel Mills had a team of runaway horses running down East Columbia Street.

1896, May 18 - Minutes (1896) of Associated Charities of Fort Wayne, Photocopy of holograph originals Archive.org.

1896, May 18 - The Supreme Court issued its decision on Plessy v. Ferguson. It gave constitutional credence to segregation in public spaces that would stand until Brown v. Board of Education in 1954.

1896, June 4 - Henry Ford successfully tests his quadricycle, horseless carriage, through the streets of Detroit. - see photo posted June 4, 2022 by American Experience | PBS on Facebook or March 21, 2013 by Time Travelers - come travel back in time on Facebook.

1896, August 6 - The silver question, an address ... - Taylor, Robert S, DELIVERED AT FORT WAYNE, IND., AUGUST 6, 1896, BEFORE THE SOLDIERS' SONS AND CITIZENS' REPUBLICAN CLUB. Archive.org.

1896 , December 31 - Fort Wayne News 101 year old Lucy Aldrich dies in Butler, Indiana, born in Vermont March 17, 1795 from the original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

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Fort Wayne illustrated (1897) Archive.org.

The 1897 city directory discussed renumbering houses on page 6

1897: The federal government ends the tribal recognition of the Indiana branch of the Miamis. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1897: H.W. Meyer brings the first automobile to Fort Wayne. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper. Auto license plates were supplied by the owner and did not require a year until 1913. See an image of license plates over the years posted July 25, 2019 by The Indiana Album on Facebook. This first automobile was discussed with photos of early automobiles February 16, 2022 on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook.

1897, January 18: the Indiana Pi Bill #246 submitted, then almost passed February 5 by the 1897 Indiana General Assembly was actually a method to square the circle, rather than to establish a certain value for the mathematical constant π (pi), the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Read the Indiana Pi Bill at Purdue.edu and the text of the bill HB 246, 1897 and on Wikipedia. See a short summation on Indiana Almost Made Pi Equal to 3.2, and Other Pi Day Facts published March 13, 2015 on the Smithsonian.com. See the Indiana Pi Bill meme Facebook post Februry 5, 2016 by Indiana Bicentennial Commission.

1897, March - the Indiana General Assembly passed a law requiring doctors and midwives who wished to practice medicine to procure a license. Read more in the June 3, 2013 Indiana News monthly by the Indiana Genealogical Society.

1897, April 19 - the first Boston Marathon is run.

1897, November 17 - the cornerstone of the new Allen County Courthouse was laid - see photo of the crowd at History Center Digital Collection on the mDON mastodon Digital Object Network. On September 23, 1902 the building was dedicated with a final cost of $817,553.59. Designed by Brentwood S. Tolan, it is now a National Historic Landmark. On September 23, 2002, the building was re-dedicated on its centennial after an $8.6 million seven-year restoration effort. Copied from Allen County Courthouse (Indiana) on Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. It is called the largest public gathering in Fort Wayne history from a May 7, 2015 Tweet by Visit Fort Wayneon Twitter. Also found on 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

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Fort Wayne, Indiana, city directory by R.L. Polk & Co. cn Publication date 1898 on Archive.org

Welcome Arch
Meijer Welcome Arch photo

1898 - the Welcome Arch 1898 historic photo was posted in a newly opened Meijer store and discussed May 27, 2022 on True Fort Wayne Indiana History on Facebook. It is explained in the article Street fair a festive affair in 1898 where B.J. Griswold gave it just a brief mention in his well-known history of Fort Wayne, when he wrote, "A street fair of large proportions was held in October 1898." But at the time, to the 45,000 residents of Fort Wayne, the 1898 Street Fair and Carnival was the biggest thing to hit this town since H.W. Meyer puttered down Main Street with the first horseless carriage the year before. Copied from a longer article by Richaed Battin published July 14, 1993 in the Summit City History Notes in the The News-Sentinel newspaper. The photo is from the Fort Wayne's Welcome Arch photo with the Description: Photograph of Welcome Arch at Calhoun Street and Lewis Street, Fort Wayne, Indiana. Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception is on the right. and Source: Photograph : black and white ; 10 x 8 inches; Handwritten on back: "Probably Calhoun at Lewis with Cathedral at right, 1898.". A similar photo is also labeled Fort Wayne's Welcome Arch with the Description: Photograph of Welcome Arch and clown on Calhoun Street , Fort Wayne, Indiana. Source: Photograph : black and white ; 5 x 6 9/16 inches; Handwritten on back: "Reprints from negative: Bob Parker, 2447 Broadway, 456-3271." Both are at the History Center Digital Collection on the mDON mastodon Digital Object Network.

1898 - Caleb Bradham invents the carbonated soft drink later to be called "Pepsi-Cola." See a 1916 Pepsi delivery wagon on SCDL Collections hosted by Clemson University Libraries in Greenville County, South Carolina.

1898, April 11 - U.S. President William McKinley asked Congress for a declaration of war with Spain. Congress would debate the resolution for almost two weeks and would not officially declare war against Spain until April 25, 1898. Act of April 25, 1898, Public Law 55-69, 30 STAT 364, which declared war between the United States and Spain.

1898, April 25 - Governor James A. Mount called for 4000 volunteers to fight in the war with Spain. Response was strong and Indiana was the first state in the nation to meet its quota. From Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook

1898, August 25 - Fort Wayne News reports a 79 year old man walks a cow for a farmer the 45 miles from Wabash to Fort Wayne arriving on the 2nd day. From Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana.

1898, December 10 - Treaty of Paris ends Spanish-American War on History.com.

Sleighing scene December 16, 1898 by Thomas A. Edison, Inc., 1898 on West Side Drive in Central Park New York at The Library of Congress.

1898, December 31 - Fort Wayne News newspaper discusses Hope Hospital improvements fromthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

1898-1902 Allen County, Indiana Circuit Court Record, General Index Book #4 1898-1902 (A-Z) Archive.org.

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1899 - first successful goldfish farm in the United States was opened in Martinsville, Indiana.

1899: The first rural free mail delivery begins for 800 people in the southern part of the county. Copied from 1000 TO 1900 Millennium milestones in Fort Wayne in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1899 - Mary E. Landon is believed to be the first woman in the United States to drive a gas powered automobile in Kokomo. from a May 4, 2015 post on Facebook by the Indiana Bicentennial Commission.

Thousands of crickets

1899 - Society of Art (1898-1899) - Fort Wayne Society of Art. Archive.org.

1899, May 2 - German drug maker Bayer registers Aspirin as a trademark in US.

1899, August 5 - thousands of crickets cover sidewalks in Fort Wayne from Fort Wayne News newspaper posted July 16, 2017 onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

1899, September 13 - Henry H. Bliss, a pedestrian in New York City, was the first person struck and killed by an automobile in the United States. He died the next day on September 14, 1899.

August 18, 1899 first car in Fort Wayne

1899, August 18 - August 18, 1899 Fort Wayne News newspaper The first car in Fort Wayne was discussed October 27, 2012 and again April 1, 2013 onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

1899, November 23 - Fort Wayne News newspaper reports finding 2 Indian graves while excavating for a new building on West Wayne Street discussed November 23, 2012 and again April 2, 2013 onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

1899, October 6 - Indiana first started using voting machines in elections. The machines had to be able to show the tickets of 7 political parties, and voters had 3 minutes to cast their vote. Copied from October 6, 2014 post by Indiana Genenealogical Societyon Facebook.

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