1940-1949 Timeline of Allen County, Indiana

1940 to 1949: In the shadow of war various newspaper articles include a 1940-1949 Timeline from the Fort Wayne Historyarchives and Stories From Our Archives an older web archive of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1941 - 1942 - 1943 - 1944 - 1945 - 1946 - 1947 - 1948 - 1949


The ParkinsonsPower for the Parkinsons, narrated by Walter Cronkite, which was first broadcast in 2008. That documentary tells the story of the making of the Rural Electrification Administration film Power and the Land (1940). Power For the Parkinsons web site has more about the 2008 PBS story about making the 1939-1940 video. 1940 video is also available on Archive.org from the FDR Presidential Library.
Flora of Indiana (1940) Archive.org ebook by Charles C. Deam Indiana Department of Conservation, Division of Forestry. Flora of Indiana is a good read for what Indiana native plants were here when the pioneers started clearing the forests for settlement. May also have clues about areas before 1940 that were still in pristine native conditions. Other Books on Indiana Native Plants are on the INPAWS - Indiana Native Plant And Wildflower Society web site.

1940 - Wolf & Dessauer's G. Irving Latz requested a Santa light display. It was designed by Isabel Parker of local firm Brinkman Corp. Santa first took flight in 1940 with three pairs of reindeer, then a fourth pair of reindeer was added for the 1941 holiday season for a total of eight. “Where was Rudolph?” Well, Rudoloph not invented until 1939, had not yet risen to national popularity. The display took a brief hiatus after the United States entered World War II. Santa returned to the side of the Wolf & Dessauer store in 1945 and spent every holiday season there until the late 1950s, when the display was put into storage. It remained there until the late 1970s when a General Telephone installer named Jim Green came upon the display in storage at L.S. Ayers, which had taken over the former Wolf & Dessauer. The display was then moved to a General Telephone lot near Southtown Mall, where the pieces lay out in the elements for a year until the telephone company needed the storage space back, when the Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce was contacted which helped support restoration efforts. In June 1979, General Telephone lent a truck to a group of volunteers who prepared to move the display to yet another storage space. On a Sunday in late September 1979, all 35 pieces were laid out on a gravel lot. Lots of stories in print and television news increased involvement in the project, and in the holiday season of 1979, the first two sets of reindeer had been restored and hung on the side of the Fort Wayne National Bank building. Santa and his other two sets of reindeer joined them the following year. Copied and paraphrased from Fond memories of Santa display include path to restoration by Corey McMaken published November 23, 2017 in The Journal Gazette newspaper. Santa Claus is comin' back to town by Dell Ford appeared in the November 10, 1980 The Journal Gazette newspaper and posted for Throwback Thursday on November 23, 2017. Thousands of people now gather every year the Wednesday before Thanksgiving for the lighting of Santa and his reindeer, the Merrry Christmas wreath, a Christmas tree, and other lighting projects added over the years with various groups posting photos and videos on social media!

1940, February 2 - debut of singer Frank Sinatra in Indianapolis at the Lyric Theater appearing with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra.

1940, April 2 - Robert Hiss, the census enumerator, started recording the 16th U.S. Federal Census in Aboite Township.

1940, May 13 – World War II: Germany's conquest of France begins as the German army crosses the Meuse. Winston Churchill makes his "blood, toil, tears, and sweat" speech to the House of Commons. From May 13, 2013 The Greatest Generations Foundation on Facebook.

1940, May 15 - McDonald's opens its first restaurant in San Bernardino, California.

1940, November 5 - Robert Lee Brokenburr, son of a former slave, became the 1st African-American elected to the Indiana Senate. Tweeted November 5, 2015 on Indiana 2016 Twitter and on Facebook referenced Legislator attacked racial barriers article by Diana Penner published February 26, 2009 on IndyStar newspaper.

1940 November 20 - Santa and his reindeer made their debut on the Washington Blvd. side of Wolf & Dessauer department store. It was the second largest display of its kind at 155 feet long and 5.5 tons. It now uses 24,717 LED lights.

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1941, January 14 - Westfield Village, Fort Wayne's first public-housing project, opened on a 15-acre site north of Taylor Street near Rockhill Park. A two-bedroom apartment in the 120-unit complex operated by the 3-year-old Fort Wayne Public Housing Authority rented for $12.50 a month. For another $1, you could get a three-bedroom apartment. The units were torn down in 1974. Copied from the 1940-1949 Timeline: In The Shadow of War from Fort Wayne History from the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1941, February 19 - the Indiana General Assembly passed House Bill 47 know as Delayed Birth Records. Births were from many years earlier - in some cases as early as the 1850's and 1860's.

1941, March 11 - The Lend-Lease Act of 1941 President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law the Lend-Lease Act—authorizing the President to sell, lease, or lend military hardware to any country he designated as vital to American national security. In December 1940, British leaders informed American officials that the war against the Axis Powers had nearly bankrupted the country. Great Britain no longer would be able to pay cash for arms as U.S. law required. From Historical Highlights Office of Art & Archives, Office of the Clerk United States House of Representatives.

1941, October 3 - Charles Lindbergh told 10,000 people crammed into and around an America First Committee rally at the Gospel Temple that President Franklin Roosevelt was "drawing dictatorial power into his hands" in an attempt to condition the United States for war. Copied from the 1940-1949 Timeline from Fort Wayne History from the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper. You can listen to the 3 minute On Free Speech by Charles Lindburghon WWII Homefront: Pre-war Defense page at historyonthenet.com. The Library of Congress page says: Lindbergh speaks again Fort Wayne, Ind. - Backed by a large portrait of George Washington, Charles A. Lindbergh addresses some 3,000 persons at an America First rally in Fort Wayne's Gospel Temple. Speech marked his first appearance since his controversial address at Des Moines.

1941, October 31 - The 60-foot-tall Mount Rushmore National Memorial containing head sculptures of US presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt was completed after 14 years of work. 

1941, November - the 4th Thursday becomes "official" Thanksgiving day after various days of celebration from various government proclamations going back to November 21, 1678 in Boston, Massachusetts. Read the Thanksgiving history on the Happy Thanksgiving! November 25, 2010 Library of Congress Law Library blog by Kelly Buchanan. Thanksgiving was not a fixed holiday; it was up to the President to issue a Thanksgiving Proclamation to announce what date the holiday would fall on. Tradition had dictated that the holiday be celebrated on the last Thursday of the month, however, this tradition became increasingly difficult to continue during the challenging times of the Great Depression. Roosevelt’s first Thanksgiving in office fell on November 30, the last day of the month, because November had five Thursdays that year. This meant that there were only about 20 shopping days until Christmas and statistics showed that most people waited until after Thanksgiving to begin their holiday shopping. Business leaders feared they would lose the much-needed revenue an extra week of shopping would afford them. From US National Archives November 21, 2012 Facebook post. Read more in Thanksgiving With Presidents on The National Archives December 2012 blog.

1941, December 1 - gas rationing went into effect across the nation in order to conserve rubber for use in World War II. The Indianapolis 500 Mile Race was cancelled for the duration of the war. Read President Roosevelt's stand on nationwide gasoline rationing by reading the New York Times.

1941, December 6 - Baer Field World War II Military Base becomes a live Army base with the arrival of 31 P-39 Airocobra fighter planes. Within days, as many as 100 of the planes were stationed there. Copied from the 1940-1949 Timeline: In The Shadow of War from Fort Wayne History from the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1941 December 7 - a Sunday, Pearl Harbor Hawaii is attacked by the Japanese. Approximately 2,400 Americans were killed and more than 1,100 others were wounded, galvanizing the nation around the rallying cry "Remember Pearl Harbor." Five servicemen from the Fort Wayne died during the attack on Pearl Harbor. Aboard the battleship USS Oklahoma, Fort Wayne men who died were Seaman Raymond Boynton, Machinist’s Mate Arthur Glenn and Seaman Maurice Spangler. Aboard the battleship USS Arizona, Fort Wayne men who died were Gunner’s Mate Marshall Coffman and Seaman Harold Summers. None of the bodies of these sailors were ever recovered until 2017 when Machinist Mate Arthur Glenn's remains were identified and received a proper burial August 21, 2018. See Remembering Pearl Harbor - 2015 YouTubeby Department of Defensepublished December 6, 2015. Pearl Harbor Attack Newsreel and Archival Footage YouTubeby PublicDomainFootage.com published December 7, 2010. Or Pearl Harbor - Dec. 7, 1941 - The only color film of the attack by CVL23USSPrinceton published December 6, 2012.

Major General Charles Douglas Herron, who was born and raised in Crawfordsville [Indiana], warned that Hawaii was susceptible to such an attack a year before. According to an US Army historian, Herron, while acting as commander of the Hawaiian Department from 1938 to 1941, "warned that carriers would approach at night, launching their planes to strike the naval base at dawn, in an attempt to destroy the US air forces. He expressed concern about the weaknesses of Hawaiian air and artillery defense against a surprise attack. He also argued for a long-range reconnaissance patrol and an efficient early warning communications system." Herron retired from service 10 months before the attack on Pearl Harbor and while his suggestions were taken seriously, they were not implemented quickly enough to avert disaster.  Copied from a December 7, 2018 post by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook. Learn more about Charles Herron: A man of character, fearless and dependable Beth Swift published August 19, 2016 in the JournalReview.com.

1941, December 8 - The Declaration of War against Japan.

On this date, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, addressing the nation in a Joint Session in the House Chamber, asked Congress to declare war against Japan for the surprise attack against American naval facilities in and around Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, a day earlier. With much of the U.S. Pacific Fleet still smoldering, Roosevelt assured Members of Congress and the American people, “With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph. So help us God.” From Office of the Clerk U.S. House of Representatives.

1941, December 11 - The House declaration of war against the Axis Powers (Germany and Italy)

On this date, the House approved a declaration of war against Axis Powers Germany and Italy—just three days after Congress had declared war against Japan. On the morning of December 11, during a rambling speech at the German Reichstag, Adolph Hitler declared war on the United States in accord with the Tripartite Pact of September 27, 1940; Italy followed suit. President Roosevelt’s swift rejoinder requesting a declaration of war against both Axis nations was read to the House by reading clerk Irving Swanson. “The forces endeavoring to enslave the entire world now are moving toward this hemisphere,” Roosevelt wrote. “Rapid and united effort by all of the peoples of the world who are determined to remain free will insure a world victory of the forces of justice and of righteousness over the forces of savagery and of barbarism.”

1941, December 27 - U.S. begins rubber rationing, including tires. See WWII Food Ration Stamps on Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog.

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1942 - World War II the U.S. Office of Price Administration (OPA) rationed gasoline Gas Ration Stickers samples at Cartyped.com.

1942, January 1 - U.S. Government prohibits new car and truck sales to civilians while automakers dedicate plants to war effort. From Smithsonian's National Museum of American History Twitter post January 1, 2014.

1942, January 16 - Carole Lombard, age 33, the movie actress, third wife of Clark Gable,  after attending a war bond rally in Indianapolis, died in an airplane crash near Table Rock Mountain, Nevada. She was born Jane Alice Peters in Fort Wayne, Indiana, on October 6, 1908.

1942, January 17 - Vernon Engelbrecht crew member of B-26 #40-1475, Bomber Squadron 33 and Carole Lombard deaths were printed side by side in the The Journal Gazette newspaper. The bomber squad story is retold in Follow Up: Researched Background of the members of the crew of B-26 #40-1475, Bomber Squadron 33 by Marie S. Schmidt. The crew died in a military plane crash just 23 days after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, but the wreckage was not located until 1992 when three hikers were curious about the old wreckage of a plane on Keller Peak in California's San Bernardino Mountains. The story was retold in the article Memorial honors local soldier killed in '41 crash by Nancy Vendreley November 11, 1994 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

1942, February 19 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs Executive Order 9066 allowing internment of Japanese Americans. 110,000 Japanese Americans living in coastal Pacific areas were placed in concentration camps in remote areas of Arizona, Arkansas, inland California, Colorado, Idaho, Utah and Wyoming. They were allowed to return to their homes 2 January 1945. For more see A | More | Perfect | Union Japanese Americans & the U.S. Constitution by the Smithsonian National Museum of National History. It was repealed February 19, 1976 by President Gerald R. Ford. See Japanese American Internment on Today's Document.

1942, April - the USS Indiana was commissioned in and served in the Pacific Theatre during World War II. Considered one of the fastest and most powerful in the naval fleet. The ship was involved in several invasions, including Iwo Jima. Decommissioned in 1947, the ship was sold for scrap metal but select pieces, including the prow, were preserved on display at a seafood restaurant in California until its recent acquisition by Indiana University. In 1966 the U.S. Navy gave IU the ship’s mainmast and two gun mounts. All three pieces are on display on the west entrance of Indiana University's Memorial Stadium. Copied from USS Indiana Dedicated At Memorial Stadium by Lacy Nowling and Ben Decamp published September 8, 2013 on IndianaPublicMedia.com. Wood from the deck was used to make the desk currently used by the Governor of Indiana. From a November 21, 2013 post by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.

1942, April 18 - The Doolittle Raiders struck Tokyo, Japan in response to the Pearl Harbor attack causing only minor damage, it forced the Japanese to recall combat forces for home defense, raised fears among Japanese civilians, and boosted morale among Americans and our Allies abroad. From PublicDomainFootage.com (Public Domain Archival Stock Footage)

1942, April 26 - Sunbeam bread started, distribution started in 1947, and in 1957 the rotating Sunbeam sign was installed on roof. From Business at a glance May 5, 2013 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

1942, May 14 - Yielding to public pressure, Fort Wayne's Park Commissioners renamed the Japanese Gardens in West Swinney Park in honor of former Park Superintendent Adolph Jaenicke. Copied from the 1940-1949 Timeline: In The Shadow of War from Fort Wayne History from the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1942, May 15 - They also served by Judy G. Russell published May 15, 2013 in The Legal Genealogist blog about the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps (WAAC), President Roosevelt signed into law the first federal statute enabling women to serve officially in noncombat positions.

1942, September 25 - the earliest Fort Wayne has ever experienced measurable snow, amounts of one-tenth of an inch or greater. From First snowfall brings record 4 inches by Dave Gong published November 22, 2015 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

1942, December 1 - Nationwide gasoline rationing goes into effect due to WWII. See New York Times article.

1942, December 4 - FDR ordered the dismantling of the WPA, created to provide jobs during the Depression. From December 4, 2014 Tweet by American History Museum on Twitter. The WPA indexed many books like birth, marriage, and death records for most counties useful for researching genealogy before their funding ended. Many of those books are now digitized and found online at Internet Archive.


1943, January 4 - Fort Wayne Waste Paper fire destroyed the building - Fire Police City County Federal Credit Union calendar.

1943 May - another flood

1943, March 29 - rationing of meat, butter, and cheese begins during World War II.

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World War II Food Rationing: "Prices Unlimited" 1944 Office of War Information 11min - by Jeff Quitney published on Jun 19, 2012

1944 -Kids gathered milkweed pods for WWII effort paid 20 cents a bag for use in life jackets from Pantagraph.com October 13, 2007 article by Bill Kemp Archivist/Librarian McLean County Museum of History in Illiniois.

1944 - the Joslyn Manufacturing and Supply Co. in Fort Wayne began work on a contract with the Manhattan Engineering District to turn short, stubby chunks of uranium into long rods. Those rods would help fuel atomic bombs, make America the world’s first superpower and begin the Cold War, a nuclear standoff that lasted for the next half-century.

Zollner Piston Story photo
Zollner Piston Story photo

1944, March 14 - the Fort Wayne Zollner Pistons defeated Sheboygan to claim the franchise’s first National Basketball League championship. Bobby McDermott, a great scorer and a sometimes combative personality from Queens, led the team to victory. McDermott was also named the league’s most valuable player. Copied from a March 14, 2018 post and a different photo posted March 14, 2019 by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook. . Learn more about the history of the Fort Wayne Zollner Pistons.

1944, March 27 - Capt. Walker A. "Bud" Mahurin of Fort Wayne, an Army ace with 21 "kills" to his credit, is shot down over France by German fighters. He is rescued by the French underground and later adds two Japanese planes to his total. Copied from the 1940-1949 Timeline: In The Shadow of War from Fort Wayne History from the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1944, June 6 - Allied forces landed on beaches at Normandy as ‘Operation Overlord’ also known as D-Day began. See D-Day Invasion 1944 Newsreel PublicDomainFootage.coma 9:30 minute YouTube uploaded October 9, 2011 on PublicDomainFootage.

1944, June 22 - President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signs the GI Bill of Rights, authorizing benefits for WWII veterans, just days after the D-day invasion of Normandy. The bill had unanimously passed both chambers of Congress in the spring of 1944. The act put higher education, job training, and home ownership within the reach of millions of World War II veterans. See On display: GI Bill of Rights by the The National Archives and their Google+ post June 9, 2014.

1944, October 28 - Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States: 1933-1945 gave a campaign re-election speech in Fort Wayne. See Remarks at Fort Wayne, Indiana on The American Presidency Project. See photo Fdr At Soldier's Field & Ft Wayne Nov 1944 with WOWO radio microphone visible by George Skadding in the Life Photo Collection on Google. A similar photo taken by Louis J. Culp of the public relations department at International Harvester shows FDR speaking, with Governor Henry Schricker and Senator Sam Jackson on the Allen County Community Album at the Allen County Public Library.

1944, December 16 - Battle of the Bulge, one of the bloodiest battles of World War II. The United States suffered 19,276 fatalities, more than in any other battle in the war. Read the full story  The Bloodiest Battlein The National Archives publication Prologue. 

1944, December 17 - the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II ended on this day in 1944 by Maj. Gen. H. Conger Pratt, Western commander, in a proclamation effective January 2, 1945. See Monday, December 18, 1944 The New York Times - Times Machine .

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1945, February 19 – March 26 - The Battle of Iwo Jima when U.S. Marines landed on and eventually captured the island of Iwo Jima from the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. Between 20,530 and 21,060 Japanese defenders entrenched on the island, from 17,845 to 18,375 died either from fighting or by ritual suicide. Only 216 were captured during the course of battle. With more than 26,000 American casualties, including 6,800 dead. From February 19, 2016 Facebook post by The Greatest Generations Foundation on Facebook.

1945, April 12 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt died. FDR held the office of president longer than anyone, more than twelve years. Under his direction, the United States endured two of its most significant and overwhelming crises, the Great Depression and World War II. FDR's White House Stenographer's diary. Read more in Life and Death in the White House on Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog.

Heroes of WWII by IndianaStateMuseum published on Jan 21, 2011

1945, April 18 - Hoosier reporter Ernie Pyle died covering WWII’s Pacific Front. Discover Pyle & a Hoosier hero. Heroes of WWII January 21, 2011 from IndianaStateMuseum YouTube channel.

1945, April 29 – World War II: The Dachau concentration camp is liberated by United States troops. Disturbing government video of Dachau Nazi Concentration Camp Footage on YouTubestock footage published January 27, 2013 by PublicDomainFootage.

1945, April 30 – World War II: Führerbunker: Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun commit suicide after being married for one day. Soviet soldiers raise the Victory Banner over the Reichstag building. Fold3 shows the front page Hitler Dead headline of The Star and Stripes newspaper.

1945, May 8 - Jubilant crowds take to the streets as Allies accept Nazi surrender and celebrate WWII victory in Europe on V-E Day.

aagbl.org photo
aagbl.org photo

1945, May 24 - the Fort Wayne Daisies won their first game of the inaugural season in the All-American Girls Professional League. The league was established during World War II to help keep baseball in the public eye while men were drafted in the U.S. Armed Services. The Daisies were league champions from 1952 to 1954. Copied from May 24, 2018 post by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook. Photo was posted May 24, 2019 by the Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.

1945, July 16 - “Trinity” First atomic explosion at Alamogordo, NMat Today's Document.

1945, July 30 -  the cruiser USS Indianapolis was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine. The ship sank in 12 minutes. Of the 1,196 crewmen aboard, approximately 300 went down with the ship. Survivors drifted in the ocean until August 2. See USS Indianapolis Memorial on IN.gov. A submarine commisisoned January 5, 1980 was the third ship named USS Indianapolis in the United States Navy named for the state capital Indianapolis, Indiana. See also The Worst Shark Attack in History on Smithsonian.com.

Bombing of Hiroshima WWII Enola Gay Public Domain Archival Stock Footage A newsreel on the bombing of Hiroshima, Japan. The Enola Gay and its crew as well as aftermath of the devastation.  YouTubeuploaded March 17, 2010 by PublicDomainFootage

1945, August 6 - the United States B-29 bomber, the Enola Gay, drops the world’s first atom bomb on Hiroshima, Japan during World War II. See photos posted August 6, 2015 on US National Archives on Facebook.

1945, August 14 - Japanese forces surrendered, ending World War II. Around 338,000 Indiana men fought in the war and over 118,000 Hoosier women also served in the military. 13,370 Indiana servicemen were killed. A jubilant crowd of thousands gathered at the corner of Calhoun Street and Washington Boulevard to celebrate the victory over Japan and the end of World War II. See photo on the original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

1945, September 2 - a written agreement was signed by General Douglas MacArthur as Supreme Allied Commander on the deck of USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, Japan, on V-J, Victory in Japan, Day when Japan surrendered ending their participation in World War II!

1945, November 23 - the wartime rationing of most foods ended. From The End of Rationing and the Celebration of Thanksgiving on The National WWII Museum.

1945, December 28 - The US Congress officially recognized the Pledge of Allegiance. The pledge was composed in 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister. On Flag Day in 1954 Congress added the words “under God.” See all four versionsS of Pledge of Allegiance on Wikipedia.

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1946 Baer Field renamed Fort Wayne Municipal Airport.


1947, October 7 - 10/7/1947. Grand Rapids & Indiana Railroad passenger train hit an earth mover at crossing on California Road, north of city, at 12:17 p.m. 3 died and 14 hurt. is the description on three photos in the Allen County Community Albumlabeled G. R. & I. WRECK (1293) from a distance, G. R. & I. WRECK (1294) shows a drainage creek, G. R. & I. WRECK (1295). Discussed May 10, 2019 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Closed group on Facebook

1947, November 5 - Even though the federal government would pay all but $4.08 million of the $27 million total, Fort Wayne voters rejected construction of the proposed Anthony Wayne Parkway. Copied from the 1940-1949 Timeline: In The Shadow of War from Fort Wayne History from the archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.


1948 - Mike's Carwash opens the first full service car wash in Indiana.

1948, June 4 - President Harry S. Truman's campaign train visits Fort Wayne shown April 24, 2014 in photo on Visit Fort Wayne on Facebook.

1948, July 9 - the U.S. Air Force welcomed its first female recruit. Read more Today in 1948, the U.S. Air Force Accepted Its First Female Member on Smithsonian.com.

1948, August 11 - Hagerstown Indiana’s Ralph Teetor, blind since youth, filed a patent for what he trademarked as Speedostat which became known as curise contrl on automobiles. Photo and information posted August 11, 2018 on Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook referencing the article The Sightless Visionary Who Invented Cruise Control Self-driving cars were far from Ralph Teetor’s mind when he patented his speed control device by David Sears published March 12, 2018 on Smithsonian.com.

1948, November 2 - Harry Truman who as Vice-President took over as President when Franklin D. Roosevelt died suddenly in 1945 towards the end of the World War II, upset New York Governor Thomas Dewey for a second term.


1949, March - the Indiana legislature abolished the policy of public schools being segregated by race or color. Kindergartens and grade schools had until the start of the 1950 school year to comply; junior high schools were given until the start of the 1951 school year and high schools until the start of the 1954 school year. The law also stated that school districts did not have to provide transportation to students who lived within 1 mile of a school. Source: Laws of the State of Indiana passed at the eighty-sixth regular session of the General Assembly begun on the sixth day of January A.D. 1949 (Indianapolis: The Bookwalter Co., 1949). April 11, 2014 FRIDAY FACT copied from Indiana Genealogical Society on Facebook.

1949, May 30 - the first TV station in Indiana went on the air. WFBM, Channel 6, premiered with a live broadcast of the 500-Mile Race. Copied from May 30, 2017 Facebook post by Indiana Bicentennial Commission.

1949, June 14 -  President Harry Truman signed an act of Congress designating June 14 as National Flag Day. Read The Father of Flag Day on the The National Archives Prologue: Pieces of History blogabout 19 year old teacher Bernard J. Cigrand who placed a 10-inch, 38-star flag in a bottle on his desk on June 14, 1885 at the Stony Hill School in Ozaukee County, Wisconsin. He then asked his students to write essays on the flag and its significance to them.

1949, June 24 - first TV Western, Hopalong Cassidy, airs on NBC. See 1950 lunchbox featuring the cowboy hero on Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog.

photo Look magazine cover Fort Wayne America's Happiest Town in 1949

1949, August 30 - Look magazine called Fort Wayne America's Happiest Town. Griswold-Phelps labeled Fort Wayne Indiana's Happiest City in their 1914 Handbook and Guide to Fort Wayne. See photo on 1940-1949: In the Shadow of War: Postwar era best, worst of times by Kevin Kilbane of The News-Sentinel newspaper. Martin Gumbert stated: With all Fort Wayne's vitality, people don't shout, push or show symptoms of irritation. There are no extremes of poverty, no sprawling slums, no organized vice and gambling. There is little open prejudice. Everybody knows his neighbor. There is no ‘boss,' no bad civic memories. The story was revisited in Happy Fort Wayne label has roots in 1914 guidebook discussing the 1914 book by Dell Ford published August 21, 1978 in The Journal Gazette newspaper and Is this town still happy? A Look back by Gary Penner published September 29, 1982 in The News-Sentinel newspaper and again in Fort Wayne: Fat, stupid ... and melancholy? Magazine says city's no longer nation's 'happiest,' but that's OK by Kevin Leininger published December 3, 2011 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. Several photos of these newspaper articles were discussed June 29, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Closed group on Facebook.

1949, August 23 - Shelley Lee Long is born in Fort Wayne, she grew up to play Diane Chambers on top ranked sitcom TV show Cheers and star of the movie Money Pit.

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