THINGS EVERY HISTORY BUFF SHOULD DO IN INDY

You value the story behind a destination - the people and events that made things how they are today. You’ve got a talent for research with an encyclopedic knowledge of dates, facts, and important events.

You’re likely to be found exploring museums, archives, and libraries to satisfy your begging curiosity. You’re a history buff, who looks at the past as a mystery waiting to be uncovered.

MAP THIS TRIP
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Conner Prairie

A Smithsonian-affiliate making history

  • Span 200 years of American history at Conner Prairie, including real stories of Indians and fur traders, pioneer town life and Civil War skirmishes
  • Live through the nightmarish raid of Civil War Confederate soldiers as they attacked Dupont, a southern Indiana town
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Indiana Historical Society

Showcasing History in New Ways

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Indiana State Museum

History of the Hoosier State

  • Explore unique stories, events, and characters that have helped shape Indiana's history
  • Learn about Abraham Lincoln’s boyhood in Indiana and see a rare artifact, his rough-hewn wood mallet, dated and initialed A.L. 1829 
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Indianapolis City Market

Historic Marketplace

  • First opened in 1886, the Indianapolis City Market is the city’s original foodie’s haven
  • Today, the stand holders serve up a world of dishes, from Middle Eastern to Greek, Mexican, and Indian
  • Don’t miss a tour of the Market’s historic (and a bit creepy) Romanesque underground catacombs 
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Monuments & Memorials

Aside from Washington, D.C., Indy is home to more monuments and memorials than any other city in the U.S., and that’s because the designer protégé (Ralston) of the architect who platted Washington, D.C. (L’Enfant) came to Indianapolis to plat the Circle City.

MONUMENTS & MEMORIALS GUIDE

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Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site

Inside the Life of a U.S. President

  • Harrison was our 23rd president and his home tells of his life in Indy
  • Hear back stories about Harrison, both funny and poignant, that bring appreciation to a president who is not among our country's most famous
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Madame Walker Theatre

The Legacy of America’s First Self-Made Female Millionaire

  • Madam CJ Walker’s story is inspiring, an African-American woman who fought the odds to develop a successful business
  • Take a building tour and also discover the history of Indiana Avenue, the center of the Black experience in Indy
  • Check out Jazz on the Avenue concerts and other programs
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The Children's Museum of Indianapolis

History Disguised as Fun

  • Turn your watch back 65 million years and be on the lookout for tyrannosaurs, triceratops, and Maiasauras roaming at Dinosphere
  • Make friends with Egyptian mummies, Chinese warriors, and swashbuckling pirates at the Treasures of the Earth exhibition
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Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library

Learn About the Man Behind the Books

  • See Vonnegut’s drawings and doodles (including Kilgore Trout), his reading glasses, Purple Heart, and more
  • Browse first editions of every Vonnegut novel, several signed editions, and films based on his work
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Oldfields-Lilly House & Gardens

Historic country estate home

  • Journey back to the 1930s for a glimpse of country estate living in the luxurious, elegant home of J.K. Lilly, Jr
  • Walk through the French Chateau style mansion
  • Free guided walks through Newfield's gardens are offered April through September 
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Black Literature and Culture

Indianapolis Central Library

  • Interactive displays, books, and images highlighting African American heroes who changed the world
  • Free and open to the public at the Indianapolis Central Library
 
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Cassie's Guide to Historic Indy

President of Prized Indy Landmark

Between running one of Indy’s most popular historic venues, the Athenaeum, and leading Indy’s largest yoga event on the steps of our beloved Soldiers and Sailors Monument, Cassie Stockamp knows a thing or two about historic attractions in Indy. Follow along as Cassie shares her favorite spots in Indy.

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Omni Severin Hotel

A Century of Service and Style

  • It’s a landmark property first opened in 1913 that is complete with all the amenities expected in a top hotel today
  • The hotel is Indy's longest-standing Four Diamond property
  • Located along lively Illinois and Georgia Streets, the hub of downtown’s historic Wholesale District

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Trip Ideas for History Buffs



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