Today in Indiana History

Historical Events

  • 1800-05-07 Indiana Territory organized
  • 1816-12-11 Indiana becomes 19th state of the Union
  • 1825-01-03 Scottish factory owner Robert Owen buys 30,000 acres in Indiana as site for New Harmony utopian community
  • 1844-01-15 University of Notre Dame receives its charter in Indiana
  • 1851-11-09 Kentucky marshals abduct abolitionist minister Calvin Fairbank from Jeffersonville, Indiana, and take him to Kentucky to stand trial for helping a slave escape.
  • 1859-08-17 1st air mail (in a balloon) took off from Lafayette, Indiana
  • 1863-07-09 R Morgan's: Indiana [->JUL 13]
  • 1865-05-13 Battle of Palmito Ranch, near Brownsville, Texas: final engagement of the American Civil War, Private John Jefferson Williams of B Company, 34th Regiment Indiana Infantry is last man killed
  • 1870-01-27 1st sorority (Kappa Alpha Theta) (DePauw U in Greencastle, Indiana)
  • 1873-10-08 First women's prison run by women opens at Indiana Reformatory Institute
  • 1874-03-10 Purdue University (Indiana) admits its 1st student
  • 1883-06-02 1st night baseball under lights, Fort Wayne Indiana
  • 1892-01-11 William D McCoy of Indiana appointed US minister to Liberia
  • 1905-08-06 26.7 cm rainfall at Princeton, Indiana (state record)
  • 1905-11-23 Henry Watson Furness, an Indiana physican, named minister of Haiti
  • 1907-03-09 1st involuntary sterilization law enacted, Indiana
  • 1911-05-15 Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Indiana University, incorporates
  • 1925-03-31 WOWO-AM, Ft Wayne Indiana begins radio transmission (500 watts)
  • 1929-07-04 AM radio station WOWO, Indiana's transmitter burns down
  • 1929-07-05 WOWO-AM, Indiana returns to air, 1 day after transmitter burns down
  • 1930-08-07 A large mob estimated at 2,000 lynch two young black men, Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith in Marion, Indiana

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1933-10-23 John Dillinger and his gang rob Central National Bank, in Greencastle, Indiana. They take $75, 000

Gangster John Dillinger
John Dillinger
  • 1936-07-14 116°F (47°C), Collegeville, Indiana (state record)
  • 1938-12-31 Dr R N Harger's "drunkometer", 1st breath test, introduced in Indiana
  • 1949-11-11 WTTV TV channel 4 in Bloomington-Indianapol, IN (IND) 1st broadcast
  • 1951-02-02 -35°F (-37°C), Greensburg, Indiana (state record until 1994)
  • 1954-12-17 1st fully automated railroad freight yard (Gary, Indiana)
  • 1963-10-31 Leaking propane gas explodes kills 64 at 'Holiday on Ice' (Indiana)
  • 1964-02-01 Indiana Governor Mathew Walsh tries to ban "Louie Louie" for obscenity
  • 1967-11-07 Richard G Hatcher elected mayor of Gary, Indiana
  • 1968-04-06 Gas and gunpowder explosions at sporting goods store, downtown Richmond, Indiana, kills 41 and injures more than 150
  • 1968-07-27 Race Riot in Gary Indiana
  • 1969-09-09 Allegheny 853 collides with Piper Cherokee above Indiana, kills 82
  • 1972-03-10 1st black US political convention opens (Gary Indiana)
  • 1974-12-09 Johnson Grigsby freed after 66 years in jail in Indiana
  • 1979-03-26 Michigan State Spartans snaps Indiana State's 33-game win streak
  • 1986-01-21 100 participate in Nude Olympics race in 38°F (3°C), Indiana
  • 1988-04-22 Women are allowed to compete in Little 500 bicycle race (Indiana)
  • 1991-07-21 Sharmell Sullivan (Gary Indiana), 20, crowned 23rd Miss Black America

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1992-02-10 Mike Tyson convicted of raping Desiree Washington in Indiana

Heavyweight Boxing Champion Mike Tyson
Heavyweight Boxing Champion
Mike Tyson
  • 1994-01-19 -36°F (-38°C) in New Whiteland, Indiana (state record)
  • 1994-10-31 American Eagle ATR-72 crash down at Gary, Indiana: 68 killed
  • 2005-11-06 The Evansville Tornado of November 2005 kills 25 in Northwestern Kentucky and Southwestern Indiana.
  • 2012-03-02 Tornadoes kill at least 27 people in the American states of Indiana and Kentucky

Famous Birthdays

  • 1815-07-30 Thomas Jackson Rodman, Salem Indiana, Bvt Brigadier General (Union volunteers) was an American military inventor of the rodman gun and perforated-cake gunpowder
  • 1846-05-22 Oliver Perry Hay, Saluda Indiana, American Paleontologist
  • 1855-11-05 Eugene V. Debs, Terre Haute, Indiana, American labor leader and Socialist presidential candidate (d. 1926)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1867-04-16 Wilbur Wright, American aviator (Wright Brothers), born in Millville, Indiana (d. 1912)

Aviator Wilbur Wright
Wilbur Wright
  • 1875-11-11 Vesto Slipher, Mulberry Indiana, American Astronomer who provided the first evidence to support the expanding-universe theory
  • 1886-12-01 Rex Stout, Noblesville Indiana, American mystery writer (Nero Wolf novels)
  • 1891-06-09 Cole Porter, Indiana, composer/lyricist (Anything Goes, Kiss Me Kate)
  • 1899-07-01 Henry "Indiana" Jones Jr, fictional character "Indiana Jones"
  • 1899-07-25 Ralph Dumke, Indiana, actor (Movieland Quiz)
  • 1902-03-09 Will Geer, Frankfort Indiana, American actor (Grandpa Walton-The Waltons)
  • 1902-06-07 Herman B Wells, president and chancellor of Indiana University (d. 2000)
  • 1903-01-20 Leon Ames, Portland Indiana, actor (Mr Ed, Father of the Bride)
  • 1904-06-24 Phil Harris [Wonga Philip], Linton, Indiana, American actor and singer (Anything Goes, Robin Hood)
  • 1906-05-08 David Van Vactor, Plymouth Indiana, composer (Chaconne)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1908-05-20 Jimmy Stewart, American actor (Mr Smith Goes to Washington, It's a Wonderful Life), born in Indiana, Pennsylvania (d. 1997)

  • 1908-10-06 Carol Lombard [Jane Alice Peters], American actress (My Man Godfrey, In Name Only), born in Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • 1914-04-23 John Hubbard, Indiana Harbor Indiana, actor (Don't Call Me Charlie)
  • 1918-01-26 Philip José Farmer, Terre Haute Indiana, American science fiction novelist (Riverworld)
  • 1920-12-28 Bruce McCarty, South Bend, Indiana, architect (1982 World Fair), (d. 2013)
  • 1923-10-23 Ned Rorem, Richmond Indiana, composer/author (Sky Music)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1924-04-04 Gil Hodges, American baseball player and manager (Brooklyn Dodgers, NY Mets), born in Princeton, Indiana (d. 1972)

MLB First Baseman Gil Hodges
MLB First Baseman
Gil Hodges
  • 1929-06-13 Ralph McQuarrie, conceptual designer (Star Wars, E.T.), born in Gary, Indiana (d. 2012)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1931-05-13 Jim Jones, American Leader of Peoples Temple cult (Jonestown Massacre), born in Randolph County, Indiana (d. 1978)

Founder of the Peoples Temple cult Jim Jones
Founder of the Peoples Temple cult
Jim Jones
  • 1932-10-19 Lloyd Haynes, South Bend Indiana, actor (Pete Dixon-Room 222)
  • 1937-06-11 Chad Everett [Raymon Lee Cramton], South Bend, Indiana, American actor (Medical Center, Airplane II)
  • 1937-09-06 Jo Anne Worley, Lowell Indiana, comedienne (Laugh-in)
  • 1939-06-12 Francis X McCloskey, (Rep-D-Indiana, 1983- )
  • 1940-10-25 Bobby Knight, college basketball coach (Indiana, Olympic-gold-1984)
  • 1941-07-18 Lonnie Mack, American rocker (Baby What's Wrong), born in Aurora, Indiana (d. 2016)
  • 1941-08-14 Connie Smith, Elkhart, Indiana, singer (Dream Painter, New Horizons)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1942-07-13 Harrison Ford, actor (Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Frantic), born in Chicago, Illinois

  • 1942-07-15 Philip R Sharp, (Rep-D-Indiana, 1975- )

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1944-05-14 George Lucas, American director (Star Wars, Indiana Jones), born in Modesto, California

Film Director George Lucas
Film Director
George Lucas

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1945-07-28 Jim Davis, Marion Indiana, cartoonist (Garfield)

Garfield Cartoonist Jim Davis
Garfield Cartoonist
Jim Davis
  • 1946-03-05 Michael Warren, Indiana, actor (Bobby Hill-Hill Street Blues)
  • 1949-08-13 Peter J Visclosky, (Rep-D-Indiana, 1985- )
  • 1949-08-23 Shelley Long, actress (Diane-Cheers, Money Pit), born in Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • 1950-05-29 Rebbie [Maureen] Jackson, singer (R U Tuff Enuff), born in Gary, Indiana
  • 1951-10-07 John Cougar Mellencamp, Seymour Indiana, rocker (Jack & Diane)
  • 1952-07-15 Jill Long, (Rep-D-Indiana)
  • 1953-09-29 Drake Hogestyn, Ft Wayne Indiana, actor (7 Brides for 7 Brothers)
  • 1953-11-03 Kate Capshaw [Nail], American actress (Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom), born in Fort Worth, Texas
  • 1953-12-06 Kin Shriner, Indiana, actor (Scott-General Hospital, Rituals)
  • 1953-12-06 Wil Shriner, NYC/Indiana, talk show host (Wil Shriner Show)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1954-10-10 David Lee Roth, Bloomington Indiana, rock singer (Van Halen-Jump)

Van Halen Rocker David Lee Roth
Van Halen Rocker
David Lee Roth
  • 1954-12-11 Jermaine Jackson, singer (Jackson 5-ABC), born in Gary, Indiana
  • 1954-12-25 Steve Wariner, Noblesville Indiana, country singer (Small Town Girl)
  • 1955-06-15 Polly Draper, American actress (Thirtysomething, Side Effects), born in Gary, Indiana
  • 1956-05-29 LaToya Jackson, American singer/model (If You Feel the Funk)/posed for Playboy, born in Gary, Indiana
  • 1956-10-08 Janice Voss, South Bend, Indiana, astronaut (shuttle radar topography mission), (d. 2012)
  • 1956-10-08 Larry Crane, Seymour, Indiana, American rocker (John Mellencamp band)
  • 1956-10-30 Tim Roemer, (Rep-D-Indiana)
  • 1956-12-09 Sylvia, Kokomo Indiana, country singer (Nobody)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1958-08-29 Michael Jackson, recording artist and King of Pop (Thriller, Bad), born in Gary, Indiana (d. 2009)

King of Pop Michael Jackson
King of Pop
Michael Jackson
  • 1958-11-26 Steve Buyer, (Rep-R-Indiana)
  • 1961-04-20 Don "Hitman" Mattingly, Evansville, Indiana, American MLB 1st baseman (NY Yankees/MVP 1985)
  • 1962-03-09 Brian Green, Columbus Indiana, actor (Sam Fowler-Another World)
  • 1964-06-23 Joey Allen, Ft Wayne Indiana, rock guitarist (Warrant-Cherry Pie)
  • 1965-08-11 Embeth Davidtz, Lafayette, Indiana, American actress (Bicentennial Man, Schindler's List)
  • 1965-10-11 Sean Patrick Flanery, actor (Young Indiana Jones, Powder)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1966-05-16 Janet Jackson, singer, Michael's sister (Control), born in Gary, Indiana

  • 1967-05-31 Kenny Lofton, E Chicago Indiana, outfielder (Cleveland Indians)
  • 1968-11-15 Brenda Alyce Bassett, Kokomo Indiana, Miss Indiana-America (1991)
  • 1970-10-18 Bob Kennedy, Bloomington Indiana, 5k runner
  • 1971-07-20 William Deering Jr, South Bend Indiana, pole vaulter
  • 1971-11-03 Tricia Carolyn Nosko, Miss USA-Indiana (1997)
  • 1972-02-18 Shani Lynn Nielsen, New Albany IN, Miss America (Indiana-Top 10-1997)
  • 1972-07-12 Travis Best, American basketball player (1995-2002 Indiana Pacers), born in Springfield, Massachusetts
  • 1973-01-30 Holly Noelle Roehl, Miss Indiana USA (1996)
  • 1974-06-20 Jami Ferrell, Munncie Indiana, playmate (Jan 1997)
  • 1975-03-03 Albert Fields, rocker (Party-Rodeo, That's Why), born in Gary, Indiana
  • 1976-05-30 Omri Hairi Katz, actor (Marshall Teller-Eerie Indiana), born in Los Angeles, California
  • 1977-12-14 Tisha Dabber, Shelbyville Indiana, actress (New Mickey Mouse Club)
  • 1978-06-05 Misha Ivetich, Miss Indiana Teen USA (1996)
  • 1978-07-20 Jen Grubb, Elk Hart Indiana, soccer defender (Olympics-96)
  • 1980-08-20 Corey Carrier, actor (Young Indiana Jones)
  • 1982-06-09 Amber Yoder, Miss Indiana Teen USA (1997)
  • 1990-07-27 Indiana Evans, Australian actress

Famous Weddings

  • 1992-09-05 Rock singer John Mellencamp (40) weds model Elaine Irwin Mellencamp (23) in Indiana

HeartWedding of Interest

1993-06-27 Actress Julia Roberts (25) weds country singer Lyle Lovett (36) at St. James Lutheran Church in Marion, Indiana

Actress Julia Roberts
Julia Roberts

Famous Deaths

  • 1845-03-18 John Chapman, [Johnny Appleseed], American pioneer agronomist dies in Allen County Indiana
  • 1876-06-08 George Sand, French author (Indiana, Consuelo), dies at 71
  • 1886-08-22 Jose da Silva Mendes Leal, Portuguese author (Indiana), dies at 67
  • 1997-11-20 Gary Burris, murderer (Kenneth Chambers), executed in Indiana
  • 2003-09-13 Frank O'Bannon, Governor of Indiana (b. 1930)
  • 2007-12-15 Julia Carson, U.S. Congresswoman from Indiana (b. 1938)