1950-1959 Timeline of Allen County, Indiana

1950 to 1959: Days of conflict, years of prosperity various newspaper articles include a 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1951 - 1952 - 1953 - 1954 - 1955 - 1956 - 1957 - 1958 - 1959


The News Publishing Co. and The Journal-Gazette Co. form joint agency agreement, now known as Fort Wayne Newspapers Inc., to save the financially foundering Journal. Copied from the 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1950s - people still raised and killed chickens in Weisser Park area within Fort Wayne city limits. Memories were discussed April 28, 2019 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Closed group on Facebook.

1950s - American Chestnut trees all but wiped out by blight disease. The American chestnut once towered over everything else in the forest. It was called the “redwood of the East.” Dominating the landscape from Georgia to Maine, Castanea dentata provided the raw materials that fueled the young nation’s westward expansion, and inspired the words of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Henry David Thoreau. Then, the blight struck. By the 1950s, this mightiest of trees was all but extinct – “gone down like a slaughtered army,” in the words of naturalist Donald Culross Peattie. Read the rest of the story Bringing back a blighted icon Hope survives for American chestnut by Allen G. Breed of the Associated Press December 9, 2012.

1950's Slideshow Longing For a City: Why we miss old Fort Wayne and what we should do about it by , Marketing Director, Townsends / Owner, Rockhill Design published March 1, 2010 on Slideshare.net.

1950's - Stephen King the famous author lived here briefly during his early childhood.

1950, January 24 - groundbreaking for the Memorial Coliseum. See photo posted May 5, 2016 by JG Features of The Journal Gazette newspaper on Twitter.

March 15 taxes due!
Poster when taxes were due March 15

1950, March 15 - was tax due deadline from National Archives Today's Document on tumblr.

1950, February 16 - Disney’s Cinderella movie opens from This Day in History on The History Channel.

1950, May 17 - the White House in Washington D.C. was being rennovated right down to the shell of the building. See photo of dump trucks and bulldozers inside the White House on National Archives on flickr.

1950, May 30 - Memorial Day - Photo caption: 1950 - Troops from the Anthony Wayne Council of the Boy Scouts of America marched down Main Street in the Memorial Day Parade on May 30, 1950. The parade also included a number of marching bands and representatives of all the county's veterans organizations. Thousands of spectators lined the parade route to Lindenwood Cemetery. Photo from THIS DAY IN HISTORY: May 30 in photos by Dan Vance posted May 30, 2018 on The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1950, June 25 - the Korean Conflict begins when North Korea invades South Korea, the first war of the Cold War. The North Korean Army crossed into South Korea, capturing the capital Seoul in less than a week. The north was supported by the People's Republic of China and the Soviet Union, while the south was supported by the United Nations, which condemned the attack and recommended its member states (countries) support the south with troops, supplies and weapons. U.S. soldiers comprised about 88 percent of the troops sent overseas. Copied from Remembering 'The Forgotten War' May 27, 2013 by Sheryl Krieg of The News-Sentinel newspaper. Read more Korean War on Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog. Read about the events leading up the war on a June 25, 2014 post via The Writer's Almanacon The History Center Facebook page.

1950, June 27 – the United States decides to send troops to fight in the Korean War. President Harry S. Truman authorizes the Air Force and Navy to enter the Korean conflict.

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1951, January 29 - Indiana was the 26th state to ratify the twenty-second amendment limiting the President to two terms. The 36th state, Minnesota, ratified it 1951, February 27 to the United States Constitution. Congress passed the amendment on March 21, 1947. From Twenty-second Amendment to the United States Constitution on Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

1951, June 14 - UNIVAC 1 was one of the first civilian computers, it tabulated some of the results from the 1950 Census as well as the entire 1954 Economic Census. Read more at UNIVAC I - History - U.S. Census Bureau. A June 14, 2013 commment on their Facebook page states the last UNISYS was March 30, 2010.

1951, August 12 - ground breaking for new Parkview Hospital on East State Blvd. and Randallia Street. Formerly the 1878 Fort Wayne City Hospital, then 1917 Hope Methodist Hospital.


1952 - Allen County War Memorial Coliseum was finished and Komet Hockey begins

1952, February 19 - Indiana & Michigan Co.'s interurban rail service had its last run. The locomotives had provided freight service between I & M and the city filtration plant, the Fort Wayne State School and Centlivre Brewery. The line had been in service since 1906 and was the last remaining interurban rail line in the state. Copied from THIS DAY IN HISTORY: February 19 in photos published February 19, 2018 by The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1952, March 23 - a CardCow.com postcard shows the Municipal Bathing Beach on the St. Joseph River. It was next to Johnny Appleseed Park across the river from Concordia High School. The postcard was a birthday card from Larry Lantz to Leona Lunk using 3 cents postage.

1951, April 28 - eleven people died in a plane crash. Eight passengers and three crew members were on United Flight 129 that departed Cleveland at 18:07 for Chicago, Illinois, with stops scheduled at Fort Wayne and South Bend on board a Douglas DC-3A-197 when it crashed. Debris was scattered over two acres of cropland on the farm of Brooks Smith, in a slightly hilly section three miles southwest of Baer field. Copied from Fort Wayne, IN Airplane Crash, Apr 1951 on GenDiasters.com, CRASH OF A DOUGLAS DC-3A-197 IN FORT WAYNE: 11 KILLED on Home Bureau of Aircraft Accidents Archives, and Saturday 28 April 1951 at the Aviation Safety Network. Discussed April 28, 2019 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Closed group on Facebook.

1952, May 2 - Union Stockyards fire on East Washington Blvd.

1952, June 13 - just a few years after a giant turtle was reported in Churubusco, Whitley County, now knicknamed Turtle Town, the Mrs. D.A. Crance with two children while driving down California Road in broad daylight stops her car when she sees a log across the road ahead. As she ponders what to do, one end of the “log” rises three feet off the road! “It had a head like a bulldog,” she later said of what she reported was a “sickly blue” snake that stretched all the way across the road, at least 18 feet long and 5 inches around. The next day, about 100 hunters search the area on foot with the aid of trucks and airplanes. There are people from local conservation clubs, the parks department and even the Sheriff's Mounted Posse – yes, that was a thing – searching on horseback. Copied from the June 1952: Hunting for a giant snake and That was my snake. Dan Somers, who grew up in Fort Wayne and now lives near Syracuse, says he and his brother Sam were responsible for at least some of the sightings of Pete the Python in 1952 discussed in Fake snake: Behind the 1952 prank published June 27, 2019 both articles by Corey McMaken published May 2019 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

1952, September 15 - photo of Dwight Eisenhower at the Baker Street Station compaigning for 34th President of the United States posted December 27, 2018 by Hofer and Davis, Inc. Land Surveyors on Facebook.

1952, September 28 - Allen County War Memorial Coliseum dedication. A video by Access Fort Wayne public television at the Allen County Public Library shows some construction, outdoor and indoor crowds at the dedication.


1953 - Pamphlets (Volume 6 - 1953) - sixth in a series of pamplets published by the Public Library of Fort Wayne and Allen County Archive.org ebook.

1953 - Two Fort Wayne landmarks open: Parkview Memorial Hospital and the Sol A. Wood Home (now Wood Youth Center). Copied from the 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1953, January 7 - President Truman tells the world that that the US has developed a hydrogen bomb. This encouraged people like Mr. and Mrs. Murland E. Anderson in 1955 to install a double-hulled steel shelter beneath their front yard.

1953 NBA All-Star game in Fort Wayne.

1953, January 13 - the Fort Wayne Pistons hosted the third NBA All-Star Game at the Memorial Coliseum, featuring Hall of Famers Bob Cousy, Ed Macauley, and Bill Sharman. According to the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel, the game was historic because Don Barksdale became the first African American player in an All-Star Game. From a January 13, 2019 post by the Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook. This was also the first nationally televised pro basketball game. A then-record crowd of 10,340 topped the previous mark of 10,094 set two years before during the first all-star game in Boston. See photo of posted by John Nolan posted January 13, 2018 on Twitter. Read more Fort Wayne sports history: City hosts NBA All-Star Game - Game attracted a record crowd published June 25, 2013 and When the big show came to the small town both by Blake Sebring of The News-Sentinel newspaper. See 1953 NBA All-Star Game on Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

1953, June 7 - President Truman tells the world that that the U.S. has developed a hydrogen bomb.

1953, June 9 - The News-Sentinel newspaper published a 20 page special section TV is coming to Fort Wayne from May 6, 2018 post on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Closed group on Facebook.

1953, June 14 - photo of Spectators lined the east side of Bueter Road on June 14, 1953, for the 16th running of the Soap Box Derby in Fort Wayne, sponsored by The News-Sentinel and area Chevrolet dealers. The race drew 61 drivers, and the winner was Tom Bartkus, 13, the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Bartkus of 1812 High St. Tom's win qualified him for the national Derby in Akron, Ohio, and the opportunity to win a $5,000 college scholarship. Copied from THIS DAY IN HISTORY: June 14 in photos by Dan Vance published June 14, 2018 in The News-Sentinel newspaper

1953, July 27 - Korean Armistice Agreement ends the three year Korean War. The first war of the the Cold War left a divided American backed South Korea and Communist North Korea separated by the DMZ - demilitarized zone on the 38th Parallel.

1953, October 10 - Tom Downes a British newspaper reporter made a visit to Fort Wayne and interviewed residents here, and wrote an article called America's Happiest Town for Lancashire Evening Post, England. The article was posted and discussed March 22, 2018 on You are positively from Fort Wayne, if you remember... Closed group on Facebook.

1953, November 21 - the former Methodist Hospital moved into the new Parkview Hospital on the southeast corner of Randalia and State Boulevard.

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1954 - Longtime Fort Wayne Mayor Harry Baals dies in office. and Azar's opens its first Big Boy restaurant in Fort Wayne. Copied from the 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1954 - the concept of TV dinners was introduced. View a Swanson TV dinner plate on American History Museum.

Pamphlets (Volume 7 - 1954) - Public Library of Fort Wayne and Allen County Archive.org ebook.

1954 - publication of Home life in early Indiana (1954) - Vogel, William Frederick, 1884- Archive.org ebook.

1954, January 1 - photo of the members of the Polar Bear Club take a dip in the icy St. Joseph River for their annual New Year's Day swim. Posted January 1, 2019 by The Journal Gazette newspaper on Twitter.

1954, February 23 - Dr. Jonas Salk gave the first polio vaccine during field trials to children in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The vaccine was produced by Eli Lily and Company in Indianapolis. From February 23, 2016 post by Indiana Historical Bureau on Facebook.

1954, March 21 - the Milan Miracle. Milan was one of the smallest schools in Indiana southeast in Ripley County with only 27 seniors including Bobby Plump. Bobby shot the winning basket against basketball powerhouse Muncie Central High School to win the state basketball championship 32-30. The "Mighty Men of Milan" of Bobby Plump and his teammates inspired the movie Hoosiers. See photos and video of The Milan Miracle on IndyStar newspaper publlished March 21, 2014.

1954, March 22 - Hudson's opens the first almost-enclosed shopping mall in Southfield, Michigan, ushering in the age of the "modern mall".

1954, March 25 - RCA began producing color TVs at their Bloomington plant. A 12-inch screen sold for around $1,000. See March 25, 1954: RCA TVs Get the Color for Money on Wired.com from a March 25, 2016 Facebook post by Indiana Bicentennial Commission.

1954, May 17 - The Supreme Court decided unanimously  the landmark Brown vs. Board of Education ruling, which declared racially segregated public schools inherently unequal in violation of the 14th Amendment. Read more on the May 17, 2013 Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog.

1954, June 14 - President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs order adding "under God" to Pledge of Allegiance. Read The Pledge's Creator on Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog and The Man Who Wrote the Pledge of Allegiance The schoolroom staple didn't originally include "under God," even though it was created by an ordained minister on Smithsonian.com.

1954, June 17 - after eight consecutive days of muggy 90° weather the forecast was for cooler weather, but the June 18 temperature rose to 92° with more muggy weather forecast for the weekend. See photos and more in A busy week in June 1954 Column to explore interesting events, times from the past by Corey McMaken in the first Throwback Thursday column called the History Journal published December 27, 2018 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

1954, August 3 - Several hundred people were on hand by 6:30 a.m. August 3, 1954, to watch the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus unload at the New York Central freight yards off Clinton Street. The crowd kept growing, and the children cheered when the car with the elephants finally arrived. Copied from THIS DAY IN HISTORY: August 3 in photos by Dan Vance published August 3, 2018 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1954, August 24 - President Dwight D. Eisenhower outlawed the Communist Party in the US when he signed the Communist Control Act of 1954 at Lowry Air Force Base, Denver, Colorado.

1954, November 12 - Ellis Island, the gateway to America, shuts it doors after processing more than 12 million immigrants since opening in 1892.

1954, December 2 - the US Senate voted to censure Senator Joseph McCarthy, describing his behavior as contrary to senatorial traditions. See Senate Resolution 301: Censure of Senator Joseph McCarthy (1954) on OurDocuments.gov.

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1955 - Fort Wayne turns away an NBA championship series when a national bowling tournament fills the coliseum. The Pistons play their home games in Indianapolis, and the Syracuse Nationals win the series. Copied from the 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1955 - golf legend Arnold Palmer earns his first-ever pro golf paycheck at the 1955 Fort Wayne Open, winning $145 for 25th place at the Elks Golf Club, now Coyote Creek Golf Club. Copied from Golfing legend Arnold Palmer, 87, dies by T. Rees Shapiro of the Washington Post published September 26, 2016 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

1955 - Investigation of Communist activities in the Fort Wayne, Ind., area. Hearings (1955) - United States. Congress. House. Committee on Un-American Activities, Francis E. Walter, chairman Archive.org ebook

1955 - Nickel Plate railroad Twitter photo or Facebook photo shows overpass under construction along Superior Street that opened up the entire north side of Fort Wayne for development from Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society .

1955, January 20 - Brooklyn Dodger major league baseball player - the great Jackie Robinson, who broke the color barrier April 15, 1947, visited Central Catholic High School in Fort Wayne. His life is recalled in the 2013 movie 42 - The Jackie Robinson Story starring Chadwick Boseman as Jackie Robinson and Harrison Ford. See 1955 publicity photo on Visit Fort Wayne on Facebook.

1955, March 26 - The Ballad of Davy Crockett reached the top on this day sung by Bill Hayes, a graduate of DePauw University, actor and singer, was his only #1 song.

1955, April 12 - it was announced that Jonas Salk, using March of Dimes donations from millions of people, had developed a vaccine to prevent polio, the most notorious disease of the 20th century until AIDS. Read Whatever Happened to Polio? on the Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog. Word that the Salk vaccine was successful set off one of the greatest celebrations in modern American history, ... Church bells tolled, factory whistles blew. People ran into the streets weeping. from Defeating Polio, The Disease That Paralyzed America published April 10, 2015 by npr history dept.

1955, April 22 - Congress passed a bill ordering all U.S. coins to carry the motto “In God We Trust”. One year earlier in 1954, the motto was added to a special series of postage stamps as this newsreel from PublicDomainFootage on April 7, 2013 shows… Dwight D. Eisenhower welcomes In "God We Trust" stamp - First U.S. stamp with religious message. See also In God We Trust April 22, 2013 by Margaret Wood on The Library of Congress blog.

1955, September 30 - actor James Dean, born February 8, 1931 in Marion, Indiana, lived in Fairmount, Indiana, age 24, while driving his Porsche 550 Spyder from Los Angeles to a sports car race in Salinas, California was killed in a car accident.

1955, October 3 - the Mickey Mouse Club and Captain Kangaroo television made their television debuts. The Captain show aired until December 8, 1984, with reruns on PBS in 1986.

1955, December 1 - Rosa Parks, a black woman, was arrested, for civil disobedience in Alabama, for refusing to give up her seat to a white man. Her arrest sparked a 381-day boycott of the Montgomery bus system. It also led to a 1956 Supreme Court decision banning segregation on public transportation. Copied from Rosa Parks Was Arrested for Civil Disobedience December 1, 1955  on America's Story from America's Library at The Library of Congress.

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1956 - Fort Wayne Fine Arts Foundation (now Arts United) and Fort Wayne Ballet form. Lutheran Hospital completes new building. Dime Bank sold and reorganized as Indiana Bank, the predecessor of current Bank One operations. Copied from the 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1956, January 8 - the first USAC, United States Auto Club, race was held at the Allen County Memorial Coliseum. IRMA PLAQUE HONORS USAC'S FIRST RACE located at the coliseum with photo of plaque published November 13, 2017.

1956, June 26 - Congress approved H.R. 10660, a bill to construct 41,000 miles of interstate highways. The Senate passed the House bill with amendments, 89 to 1. The House passed the amendments by a voice vote on the very same day. President Dwight D. Eisenhower then signed H.R. 10660 into law on June 29. Read more and see a photo of a car traveling a muddy road from Congress in the Archives tumblr page and Interstate Highway System funding sign on Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog.

1956, June 29 - Pres. Eisenhower signs Interstate Highway Act. Sign marking start of construction in Missouri: - http://bit.ly/10Pi03M

1956, July 31 - Eavey's Supermarket opened. Henry J. Eavey's 80,000 square foot store was the largest supermarket in the world at the time.

1956, September 9 - Elvis Presley makes his first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.


1957 - W. Kettler and Walter Helmke present proposal to the boards of Purdue University and Indiana University to establish a joint campus in Fort Wayne. Indiana Institute of Technology moves to former Concordia College campus on East Washington Boulevard, and Concordia moves to North Clinton Street campus with buildings designed by Eero Saarinen. Copied from the 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1957, March 14 - the oriental peony (Paeonia) was adopted as the official state flower by the 1957 General Assembly (Indiana Code 1-2-7). See Indiana State Tree and Flower by the Indiana Historical Bureau. Peonies bloom from late May into early June in shades of red, pink and white. They were popular for planting in cemeteries until recently when most plantings in many cemeteries were eliminated for simplifing maintenance. From 1931-1957 the zinnia was the state flower.

1957, March 30 - Elvis Presley played at the Memorial Coliseum. Photo caption stated reportedly, the sound of his music was drowned out by the thousands of screaming fans when he performed at the Coliseum from THIS DAY IN HISTORY: March 30 with photo published March 30, 2018 in The News-Sentinel newspaper. See photos and more information at Screams greet Elvis at Coliseum in 1957 The King spoke to reporters before entertaining crowd by Corey McMaken published September 26, 2019 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

1957, May 8 - photo of Lake Erie & Fort Wayne steam locomotive No. 1 originally built for the Wabash Railroad in 1906, on May 8, 1957 was on its way to Swinney Park from THIS DAY IN HISTORY: May 8 in photos posted May 8, 2018 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1957, August 15, 16, 17, 18 - AN ESTIMATED CROWD of 15,000 attended the seventh annual Old Time Threshers and Saw Mill Operators Reunion at the James Whitbey farm near Fort Wayne, Indiana, August 15, 16, 17 and 18, 1957. It was a new record in attendance which has seen the show get bigger every year. Copied from Reunion Report by MRS. J. H. Whitbey published in the November/December 1957 issue of Farm Collector Newsletter. See more Threshing Machine articles.

1957, September 25 - nine African-American students were successfully registered at Little Rock Central High School after President Eisenhower ordered federal troops to ensure their safe entry, breaking the state's longstanding policy of segregation. Arkansas was one of the most segregated states in the country, alongside Mississippi and Alabama. The students, dubbed the Little Rock Nine, had been chosen by the NAACP based on good grades and behavior, and were asked not to respond to any taunts or threats for fear that things might escalate.

1957, October 22 - U.S. military suffers first Vietnam War casualties when 13 Americans are wounded in bombings. From October 22, 2014 American History Museum Tweet about Vietnam The First Stepson on their Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog.

1957, November 8 - Buddy Holly and the Crickets perform at the Memorial Coliseum. Buddy Holly died February 3, 1959 in an airplane crash The Day The Music Diednear Clear Lake, Iowa with Ritchie Valens and J. P. The Big Bopper Richardson.

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1958 - Fort Wayne Newspapers, The News-Sentinel and Journal-Gazette move to new building at 600 W. Main St. 120 acres on Coliseum Boulevard bought for IPFW campus. Copied from the 1950-1959 Timeline from the Fort Wayne History archives of The News-Sentinel newspaper.

1958 - Mister Softee ice cream truck came to Fort Wayne. They operated out of a garage at 4th and Harrison. The owner of the trucks was the Pontiac dealer in Warsaw, Indiana. From the original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

1958, July 29 - President Dwight Eisenhower signs a bill creating NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.


1959 - President John F. Kennedy, the 35th president visited Fort Wayne to campaign for Mayor Mike Burns, see photo on Visit Fort Wayne on Twitter.

1959, January 3 - President Dwight D. Eisenhower by Presidential Proclamation 3269 admitts Alaska as the 49th state of the Union. It was the Territory of Alaska before being admitted to the Union. It is the largest state in the Union and is in the northwest of the Americas above Canada. The capital of Alaska is Juneau. Alaska, United States Genealogy on FamilySearch Wiki.

1959, March 18 - President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Hawaii Statehood Bill admitting Hawaii on August 21, 1959 as the 50th state.

1959, April 9 - NASA  announced our nation's first seven astronauts: Scott Carpenter, Gordon Cooper, John Glenn, Gus Grissom, Wally Schirra, Alan Shepard, and Deke Slayton. Collectively, the group was often called the Mercury 7.

Within this Decade: America in Space - 1969 by usnationalarchives published July 8, 1969 YouTube
This film traces the principal accomplishments of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in aeronautics and space research from 1959 until the eve of the first lunar landing in 1969.

1959, August 21 - Hawaii admitted as the 50th state.

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