1900 - 1901 - 1902 - 1903 - 1904 - 1905 - 1906 - 1907 - 1908 - 1909
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.
Some of the articles listed below are from the 1900-1910: Era of Optimism from the Fort Wayne History Stories about time periods in the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
See Household Appliances Timeline.
- A new era of change dawns Timeline of Changes.
- Early African Americans find local life a constant struggle
By 1900, there were 276 African Americans in Fort Wayne. The overall population was 45,115. Part of the reason for the increase was the migration of African Americans moving from the South. ... By 1910, William Warfield had built a solid life for his family.by Shannon Kin.
- Hope and despair characterized times The rich moved to the suburbs while the poor struggled to survive. By Kevin Kilbane.
- Horseless carriages paved way into century by Connie Haas Zuber.
- Immigrants' toil built city's base by Nancy Nall.
- Industrial “Girls” in an Early Twentieth- Century Boomtown: Traditions and Change in Fort Wayne, Indiana, 1900-1920 a 23 page article by Peggy Seigel in the September 2003 Indiana Magazine of History journal in the archives at Indiana University Scholarworks.
- The Lincoln' insurance company built on foundation of failed pyramid scheme by Lynne McKenna Frazier.
- Robison Park amused thrill seekers
For a time, the roller coaster continued to thrill riders in Trier's Park, in what is now the west part of Swinney Park. The carousel found a home at Riverside Park in Logansport. And more than 50 years after the park closed, developers turned the land into North Pointe Woods, a housing addition.by Carol Tannehill.
- Sun shines on courthouse dedication
September 23, 1902, dedication of the Allen County Courthouse was a festive occasion that drew one of the largest crowds in county history up to that timeby Margaret Ankenbruck.
- Chestnut blight was discovered in the early 1900s and by the 1940s most American chestnut trees once a dominant tree of the eastern American forest had died.
1900, April 11 - the U.S. Navy acquires its first submarine. They would become even more important during the Cold War.
1900, June 1 - Simeon Stonder, the census enumerator, started recording the 12th U.S. Federal Census in Aboite Township.
Mitch Harper Twitter photo
1900, October 10 - Teddy Roosevelt was once pelted with stones in FortWayne, Indiana while campaigning for Vice President of the United States. March 19, 2019 Tweet by Mitch Harper on Twitter.
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1901, March -
FRIDAY FACT: In March 1901 Indiana passed a law encouraging the formation of historical societies and the preservation of county records. County councils were empowered to grant up to $5,000 for historical societies to build rooms and fireproof vaults on county land for the preservation of local records. The purpose of this law was the "collection and preservation of local and general history, making a record of the progress of the several counties of the State, and providing permanent nuclei for individual and family history." Source: Laws of the State of Indiana, passed at the sixty-second regular session of the General Assembly begun on the 10th day of January A.D. 1901 (Indianapolis: William B. Burford, 1901). Copied October 26, 2013 from Indiana Genenealogical Societyon Facebook.
1901, March - the Indiana legislature forbid Pharmacists to sell cocaine, opium or morphine to anyone "addicted to the habitual use" of them, unless they had a prescription from a licensed physician, subject to a misdemeanor and fine between $10 and $50 for each violation. Source: Laws of the State of Indiana, passed at the sixty-second regular session of the General Assembly (Indianapolis: William B. Burford, 1901). Paraphrased from September 6, 2013 post by Indiana Genealogical Society on Facebook.
1901, April 25 - New York becomes the first state to require automobile license plates.
1901, July 2 -10 year old Alice Cottrell is murdered in Wallen by Charles W. Dunn, her body hidden in the kitchen cistern. The trial dragged on through appeals in at least three different trials until 1908 from The Bluffton Chronicle December 30, 1908. Life in prison had been the verdict after the second trail from The Bluffton Chronicle June 22, 1904. The largest house in the area, afterwards the house was claimed to be haunted when it could not be rented or sold, so was moved to another location. See February 24, 2013 post by Barb Arnold onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook. Also see Dunn v. State Supreme Court of Indiana June 18, 1903 proceedings on The Northeastern Reporter, Volume 67 pages 940-944.
1901, September 6 - President William McKinley is shot while attending the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, he died several days later, and Theodore Roosevelt became president. The
United States Secret Service, established in 1865 to safeguard the nation's currency, is best known as the agency responsible for protecting the president. It took on this duty in 1901, after the assassination of William McKinley. From Life and Death in the White House on theSmithsonian National Museum of American History blog.
1901, October - major week-long horse-racing event held in Fort Wayne. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1901, October 12 - President Theodore Roosevelt officially renamed the "Executive Mansion" to the White House. From October 12, 2015 post on Accessible Archives on Facebook.
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1902 - house numbers changed due to city ordinance demands from 1901 City directory numbers - see pages 6-7of the 1902 City Directory. See also our Streets of Fort Wayne page and September 26, 2017 discussion on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook.
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1902 - Questions of the hour; a political speech delivered before the Tippecanoe club at Fort Wayne, Indiana, August 9, 1902 - Taylor, Robert S. [from old catalog] Archive.org.
1902 - The veterinary compendium; a compendium of practical and useful information. A treatise on the diseases, symptoms and remedies of live stock (1902) - Van Ame, Wales E, printed in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Archive.org.
1902, March 6 - the U.S. Census Bureau became a permanent agency within the U.S. Department of the Interior. U.S. Census Bureau History: Establishment of a Permanent U.S. Census Bureau at United States Census Bureau. See our Census pages.
1902, April 3 -
the last verified passenger pigeon in the wild was shot near Laurel [Indiana]. The birds were once so abundant that they blocked out “almost the entire visible area of sky" in the Hoosier state. Estimates indicate that three to five billion passenger pigeons inhabited North American from the 1500s through the early 1800s. After decades of over hunting and habitat destruction, the species was in dire straits by the early 20th century. In 1900, Congress signed the Lacey Act, which protected wild birds by making it a federal crime to hunt game with the intent of selling it in another state. However, it was already too late for the passenger pigeons and they soon passed into extinction. Copied from an April 3, 2019 post by the Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook. Learn more about the extinction of passenger pigeons and the environmental protections their disappearance spurred here: Flocks that Darken the Heavens: The Passenger Pigeon in Indiana Their image on the right shows John James Audubon’s painting of the male and female passenger pigeon.
- “Passenger Pigeon Extinction” Indiana State Historical Marker Will Be Dedicated in Metamora, Indiana dedication April 3, 2017 on IN.gov. March 28, 2017 notice on Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.
- See April 3, 2017 photos and discussion of historical marker dedicated for the last verified passenger pigeon shot in the wild near Laurel, Indiana on April 3, 1902 by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.
1902, April 22 - President Theodore Roosevelt sent a note to Secretary of War Elihu Root suggesting the new Army post in Indianapolis be named for President Benjamin Harrison. The fort has been used for training in several wars including two World Wars, the Cold War, Vietnam War, and other U.S. actions. In the 1990s, Fort Harrison was decommissioned with a small portion maintained. Fort Harrison State Park is open to the public and includes hiking and horseback trails, golf and dining facilities at the former Officers' Club. From April 22, 2016 Tweet and Facebook post by Indiana Bicentennial Commission.
1902, May 15 -
the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument on the Circle was formally dedicated, although a commission was initially formed in 1887. General Lew Wallace was Master of Ceremonies, which included the reading of a poem by James Whitcomb Riley and music by John Philip Sousa. Lots of photos on SOLDIERS' AND SAILORS' MONUMENT on This Is Indiana.
1902, June 11 - Horse Runs Amuck - example how life was different back then - from Fort Wayne Weekly Sentinel newspaper.
1902, July 21 - Willis Haviland Carrier, an American engineer in Buffal, New York, invented modern air conditioning. See July 21, 2014 on Accessible Archives on Facebook. See his 1914 engineer handbook Engineers hand-book of tables, charts and data on the application of centrifugal fans and fan system apparatus, including engines and motors, air washers, hot blast heaters and systems of air distribution ..., on Open Library, 1st ed. ... Ed. by Willis H. Carrier. Published 1914 by The Buffalo forge company in Buffalo, N.Y .
1902, July 29 -
the first Carnegie Library in Indiana was dedicated in Crawfordsville. The Current Events Club, a local women's organization, had been organizing the city's public library for four years when Andrew Carnegie donated $25,000 for construction costs. While this was the first Carnegie Library in the state, Indiana would come to have more Carnegies than any other state in the nation. Crawfordsville's public library relocated in 2005 and the original building reopened as the Carnegie Museum of Montgomery County in 2007. Copied from a July 29, 2018 post by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.
1902, September 23 - the new Allen County Courthouse was dedicated with a final cost of $817,553.59. Designed by Brentwood S. Tolan, construction began in 1897, the cornerstone was laid November 17, 1897. 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. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1902, October 9 - more than 16,000 were on hand for the Fort Wayne Fair Association festivities which included Fort Wayne’s first auto race at Driving Park. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1903, December 3 - St. Paul's Lutheran Church destroyed by fire. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1903 - The Naming of Indiana by Cyrus W. Hodgin
article appeared in the Papers of the Wayne County, Indiana Historical Society Vol. 1, No. 1 (1903), pages 3-11, located in the Indiana State Library. The Naming of Indiana by Cyrus W. Hodgin. Read The Naming of Indiana onSmithsonian National Museum of American History blog.
1903 - The veterinary obstetrical compendium : for the farmer and breeder of livestock (1903) - Van Ame, Wales E, "Entered according to Act of Congress in the year 1903, by Wales E. Van Ame ..." Archive.org
1903 - The planetary system : a study of its structure and growth (1903) - Taylor, Frank Bursley, published in Fort Wayne, Indiana Archive.org.
1903, January 14 - the first of 164 Carnegie libraries in Indiana opened in Goshen, Indiana. From January 14, 2016 Facebook post by Indiana Bicentennial Commission.
1903, February 16 - the First Teddy bear goes on sale, from This Day in History on The History Channel.
1903, March 22 - Niagra Falls froze solid so water stopped falling!
1903, June 16 -
Ford Motor Company was founded on this day in 1903. By 1909, the relatively affordable Model T was making car ownership accessible to more people. You can see the nation's evolving perception of "horseless carriages" in our historic newspaper archive. Horseless Carriages and Ford’s Model T: Topics in Chronicling America. Copied from a June 16, 2022 post by The Library of Congress on Facebook.
1903, July 23 - the Ford Motor Company sold its first car, a two-cylinder Model A, to a Chicago dentist named Ernst Pfenning, who paid $850 for it. The Model A was painted red, with a seat that fit two people, and no roof. It reached 28 mph at top speed.
1903, December 17 - the Wright Brothers flew the first airplane at Kill Devil Hill Kitty Hawk, North Carolina! See 1909 Wright Brothers silent YouTube film. "Success four flights Thursday morning all against twenty one mile wind started from level with engine power alone average speed through air thirty one miles longest 57 seconds inform Press home Christmas." --Telegram from Orville Wright posted December 17, 2014 by American Experience | PBS on Facebook.
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1904: Fort Wayne Bible College opens. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1904: Fort Wayne Cubs win first of two-straight Central League baseball titles before leaving the league after 1906 season. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns and Cubs battled their way to league title on diamond Betting on horse races also was a popular pastime by Blake Sebring in the 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism archive of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1904: Lutheran Hospital opens. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1904: the Fort Wayne Public Library opens. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1904 - Some Fort Wayne phizes (1904) - Griswold, Bert Joseph, 1873-1927, cartoons with humorous descriptions of local business people head photos on cartoon bodies Archive.org.
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1905: Rebuilt St. Paul's Lutheran Church opens. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1905: Lincoln National Life Insurance Co. is founded in Fort Wayne. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1905 - Fort Wayne, Indiana, 1905; picturesque and descriptive account of the present mercantile and industrial interests and advantages of Fort Wayne, Indiana (Volume yr.1905) Archive.org.
1905 - Indiana Genenealogical SocietyJune 27, 2013 Facebook
FRIDAY FACT: Indiana passed a law in March 1905 establishing speed limits for motor vehicles - 8 miles per hour in closely built-up municipal areas; 15 mph in other municipal areas; 20 mph outside municipal areas. Violators were subject to a $50 fine. Source: Acts of 1905, Chapter 123, as appears in "Laws of the State of Indiana, passed at the sixty-fourth regular session of the General Assembly" (Indianapolis: William B. Burford, 1905).
1905, January - GE markets first electric iron and first electric toaster. From GE’s history in Fort Wayne published February 9, 2014 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.
1905, February 2 -
At 7 that morning, the temperature had dropped to -12. By midnight, it had climbed to -5. But, a Journal Gazette writer reported, Copied from The cold old days published February 2, 2019 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.
that failed to express just how cold it really was, for the air was damp, instead of dry, and a sharp wind blew through the frigid atmosphere through the thickest garments and almost froze the marrow in one's bones.
1905, March 6 - Indiana began the first statewide registration of motor vehicles. For a fee of $1.00, the owner was given a two-inch diameter disc with registration number to be mounted on the vehicle. See A History of Indiana License Plates by Greg Gibson posted January 23, 2016 by Indiana Bicentennial Commission on Facebook.
1905, June 12 - the Lincoln National Life Insurance Company was founded in Fort Wayne, using the name and likeness of Abraham Lincoln. One of the company’s first life insurance policies was issued on September 1, 1905 to local dentist, Dr. Henry L. Jamieson. Jamieson arrived in Fort Wayne in 1903 and practiced dentistry locally until his death in 1938. See September 19, 2018 post with photos and more information by The History Centeron Facebook.
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1906 - Reminiscences of old Fort Wayne (1953) - Fairbank, Carolyn Randall, title page has date (1906) of original edition - letters discuss Old Fort Wayne, looks like a retype of 1906 booklet above. Archive.org
1906 - The beautiful city of Fort Wayne (1906) / by J. Murray Jordan - Jordan, J. Murray Archive.org.
1906 - Souvenir of Fort Wayne (1906) - photos of local buildings, churches, schools, hospitals. Archive.org.
1906 - In the path of the alphabet; an historical account of the ancient beginnings and evolution of the modern alphabet (1906) - Jermain, Frances Delavan Page, 1829-1905, printed in Fort Wayne, Indiana Archive.org.
1906, March 13 - American suffragist Susan B. Anthony dies at age 85.
1906, April 18 -
San Francisco Doomed headline on The Fort Wayne Sentinel newspaper from Newspapers.com. The San Francisco earthquake was followed by the largest fire in the nation's history, as gas lines ruptured, power lines fell, and chimneys collapsed. The earthquake and fire destroyed four square miles of the city and left hundreds dead. See photos at The Library of Congress.
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1907: Immigration to the United States from Europe peaks. By 1910, 14.8 percent of the U.S. population is foreign-born. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1907: Financial panic and depression hits the United States. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1907: International Harvester produces its first motor-driven farm truck. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1907, February -
FRIDAY FACT: Under an Indiana law passed in February 1907, marriages between first cousins were hereafter illegal; all marriages between first cousins that had been performed before February 1907 were legalized. Source: Acts of 1907, Chapter 68, as appears in "Laws of the State of Indiana, passed at the sixty-fifth regular session of the General Assembly" (Indianapolis: William B. Burford, 1907). From June 14, 2013 Indiana Genenealogical Societypost on Facebook. Twenty states still allow first cousin marriages from Cousin marriage law in the United States by state on Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.
1907, March 2 - The Expatriation Act declares that an American woman who marries a foreign national loses her citizenship. Spotlighting a law that stripped U.S.-born women of citizenship The Expatriation Act of 1907 required a woman who married a foreigner to 'take the nationality of her husband.' Daniel Swalm's grandmother was one such woman, and he's on a quest for justice. By Richard Simon published April19, 2014 in the Los Angeles Times. See also Timeline: Key Dates and Landmarks in United States Immigration History from Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930 on Harvard University Library Open Collections Program. In 1922 the Cable Act repealed the law, but U.S. citizenship was not restored until 1940, when a woman could get her citizenship back no mater her marital status. Read more in When Saying “I Do” Meant Giving Up Your U.S. CITIZENSHIP by Meg Hacker in the NARA publication "Prologue". See Expatriation Act of 1907 on Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. See page 1228 Fifty-Ninth Congress Sess. II. - Chapter 2534. 1907 on The Library of Congress59-th Congress. Becoming unAmerican by Judy G. Russell published September 16, 2017 on The Legal Genealogist blogblog.
1907, March 9 - Indiana Eugenics Law - Governor J. Frank Hanley signs eugenic sterilization act. The law required prisons and state mental hospitals to sterilize inmates who were deemed mentally ill by the state. Halted in 1909 by Governor Thomas R. Mashall. Posted March 9, 2018 on Twitter by Hoosier State Chronicles. Read more about this controversial law at Indiana Makes International News And History With Its Pivotal 1907 Eugenics Law by Stephanie Riley published August 1, 2014 on Hoosier State Chronicles Indiana's Digital Historic Newspaper Programblog. A March 9, 2018 post by the Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebookstated
The new law See historical marker photo posted by Beth Boland April 21, 2017 and April 13, 2018 by Indiana Historical Bureauon Twitter. Eugenics in Indiana posted October 30, 2021 on the Archives of Hoosier History Live on Saturdays, noon to 1 p.m. ET on WICR 88.7 FM has photo of the Indiana state historical marker in downtown Indianapolis labeled 1907 Indiana Eugenics Law starts its introduction with:
to prevent procreation of confirmed criminals, idiots, imbeciles and rapists required prisons and state mental hospitals to sterilize inmates, as long as two physicians verified they suffered from a mental illness. Governor Thomas R. Marshall halted sterilizations in 1909 and the Indiana Supreme Court ruled the 1907 law unconstitutional in 1921. A 1927 law reinstated sterilization and added court appeals. Approximately 2,500 in state custody were sterilized under state law. In 1974, Governor Otis R. Bowen approved Public Law No. 60, which repealed all laws concerning sterilization of the mentally ill in Indiana.
In 1907, a national "first" occurred in Indiana, but it wasn't for an achievement that would be regarded with historic pride. Indiana passed the first state eugenics law in the entire country, mandating the sterilization of some men and women in state custody. Although the 1907 law was found to be unconstitutional during the 1920s, a revised law was eventually passed. It wasn’t until the 1970s were all of Indiana's mandatory sterilization laws repealed.
1907, May 30 - President Theodore Roosevelt was in Indianapolis to dedicate the statue of General Henry Lawton at Garfield Park in Indianapolis. He also placed a wreath on the grave of President Benjamin Harrison at Crown Hill Funeral Home & Cemetery.
1907, August 19 -
the Indianapolis News reported that the Indiana Village for Epileptics was open for admission of patients. The institution, located near New Castle, opened first to residents of county jails and poor asylums. The paper noted that the Village would accept "at the present time only such patients as are not violent and are capable of doing something for the State farm." The state legislature approved an additional three villages to accomodate those suffering from epilepsy. Learn more about the Indiana Village for Epileptics here: in a 99 page untitled thesis on Scholarship Works at IUPUICopied from photo posted and discussed August 19, 2018 by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.
1907, November 16 - Oklahoma becomes the 46th state of the Union.
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1908: Lakeside Park opens. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1908: New Aveline Hotel in Fort Wayne burns. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1908: Fort Wayne rejoins Central League with the Billikens. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1908: Henry Ford introduces the Model T Ford. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper. The Model T is
generally regarded as the first mass-produced and affordable automobile. The relatively low price ($440) was partly the result of Ford’s efficient fabrication, including use of the assembly line for production instead of individually handcrafting parts. By 1918, half of all the cars in the United States were Model Ts. Copied from an August 16, 2022 post by Indiana Landmarks on Facebook.
1908, January 28 - Julia Ward Howe became the first woman elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Mrs. Howe was most famous for her November 18, 1861 rewritten composition,
The Battle Hymn of the Republic. from the 1856 lyrics by William Steffe popular as
John Brown's Body during the Civil War. See the Library of Congress Battle hymn of the republic [article].
1908, March 15 - a large sinkhole opens on Maysville Road just outside the east side of Fort Wayne from The Journal Gazette newspaper.
1908, May 3 - twelve people died in the New Aveline House hotel fire. Built in 1862 as the Aveline House on the southeast corner of Berry and Calhoun Streets. The main entrance was on Berry Street with a
Ladies Entrance on Calhoun Street. Read it's story ‘For God's sake … get out!' 100 years pass since fire guts Aveline hotel by Kim Metzger published May 1, 2008 on The Journal Gazette newspaper. See discussion and Allen County Public Libraryphoto on January 23, 2014 ThrowbackThursdays on Downtown Fort Wayne on Facebook.
1908, August 7 - the Fisher and Bradshaw Co. of Delphi, Indiana, built the first school bus -- it was a closed-body horse-drawn wagon.
1908, August 29 - the city of Fort Wayne opened its first publicly-run electric utility, called City Light & Power, on the location where Science Central now stands. Copied from Science Central Building History.
1908, September 16 - General Motors is formed by William Durant. He introduced the Chevrolet automobile in 1911, see the 1914 Chevrolet Royal Mail roadster onSmithsonian National Museum of American History blog.
1908, September 27 - the first production Model T leaves the Ford Picquette Avenue Plant in Detroit, making 1908 the historic year that the automobile became popular. From WhatWasThere.
1908, October - Ford introduced the Model T, or "Tin Lizzie." Within months, demand was so high that the company put new orders on a hiatus.
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1909 - Fort Wayne held a contest to come up with a slogan for the city resulting in Fort Wayne With Might and Main published in the June 6, 1909 The Journal Gazette newspaper. See photos published August 16, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Private group on Facebook. A book was published as Fort Wayne with might and main : Indiana's busiest, happiest city compiled and published by Ralph E. Avery in 1910 and Fort Wayne with might and main : Indiana's busiest, happiest city compiled and published by Ralph E. Avery in 1911.
1909: The first city tennis tournament is held. From 1900-1909: The Era of Optimism A new era of change dawns from the Archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.
1909 - Lincoln's profile replaces the "Indian" head on U.S. one-cent coin, the 100th anniversary year of his birth.
1909 - Improvement of Fort Wayne Indiana; report for Fort Wayne Civic Improvement Association (1909) - Robinson, Charles Mulford, 1859-1917. Archive.org.
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