Indiana websites about places to go, things to do, vacation information, sports links, facts about the state, destinations, golf, business, and more. Indiana is a diverse state with a few large urban areas, a number of smaller industrial cities, and many small towns. Residents of Indiana are known as Hoosiers.
Indiana's 41-mile Lake Michigan waterfrontone of the world's great industrial centersturns out iron, steel, and oil products. Products include automobile parts and accessories, mobile homes and recreational vehicles, truck and bus bodies, aircraft engines, farm machinery, and fabricated structural steel. Wood office furniture and pharmaceuticals are also manufactured.
The state is a leader in agriculture with corn the principal crop. Hogs, soybeans, wheat, oats, rye, tomatoes, onions, and poultry also contribute heavily to Indiana's agricultural output.
Much of the building limestone used in the U.S. is quarried in Indiana. Deep below the earth in Southern Indiana is a sea of limestone that is one of the richest deposits of top-quality limestone found anywhere on earth. New York City's Empire State Building and Rockefeller Center as well as the Pentagon, the U.S. Treasury, a dozen other government buildings in Washington D.C. as well as 14 state capitols around the nation are built from this sturdy, beautiful Indiana limestone. Indiana is also a large producer of coal. Other mineral commodities include crushed stone, cement, and sand and gravel.
The first long-distance auto race in the U. S. was held May 30, 1911, at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The Indianapolis 500 is held every Memorial Day weekend in the Hoosier capital city. The race is 200 laps or 500 miles long. From 1900 to 1920 more than 200 different makes of cars were produced in the Hoosier State. Duesenbergs, Auburns, Stutzes, and Maxwells - are prize antiques today.
Explorers Lewis and Clark set out from Fort Vincennes on their exploration of the Northwest Territory. During WWII the P-47 fighter-plane was manufactured in Evansville at Republic Aviation. Marcella Gruelle of Indianapolis created the Raggedy Ann doll in 1914.
James Dean, a popular movie star of the 1950s in such movies as "East of Eden" and "Rebel without a Cause", was born February 8, 1941, in Marion. He died in an auto crash at age 24.
David Letterman, host of television's "Late Show with David Letterman," was born April 12, 1947, in Indianapolis. Santa Claus, Indiana receives over one half million letters and requests at Christmas time.
Crawfordsville is the home of the only known working rotary jail in the United States. The jail with its rotating cellblock was built in 1882 and served as the Montgomery County jail until 1972. It is now a museum. Historic Parke County has 32 covered bridges and is the Covered Bridge Capital of the world.
Many Mennonite and Amish live on the farmland of Northeastern Indiana. One of the United States largest Mennonite congregations is in Bern. According to Amish ordnung (rules) they are forbidden to drive cars, use electricity, or go to public places of entertainment.
Indianapolis grocer Gilbert Van Camp discovered his customers enjoyed an old family recipe for pork and beans in tomato sauce. He opened up a canning company and Van Camp's Pork and Beans became an American staple. Muncie's Ball State University was built mostly from funds contributed by the founders of the Ball Corporation, a company than made glass canning jars.
In 1934 Chicago Gangster John Dillinger escaped the Lake Country Jail in Crown Point by using a "pistol" he had carved from a wooden block. In 1862, Richard Gatling, of Indianapolis, invented the rapid-fire machine gun.
Comedian Red Skelton, who created such characters as Clem Kadiddlehopper, and Freddie the Freeloader, was born in Vincennes. The Poet Laureate of Indiana, James Whitcomb Riley was born in a two-room log cabin in Greenfield. He glorified his rural Indiana childhood in such poems as "The Old Swimmin' Hole" "Little Orphant Annie", and " When the frost is on the Pumpkin".