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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Fort Wayne in Allen County, Indiana — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

The First French Fort / The First Playground in Fort Wayne

 
 
The First French Fort / The First Playground in Fort Wayne Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 20, 2009
1. The First French Fort / The First Playground in Fort Wayne Marker
Inscription. [Left side of marker]:The First French Fort

The French lived among the Miami at the Three Rivers as early as 1697 when Jean Baptiste Bissot, Sieur de Vincennes (d. 1719), and Francois Marie Bissot de Vincennes, the son of Jean Baptiste (d. 1736), served as royal agents to the Miamis.

The first fort was built in 1722 on this site by Capt. Dubuisson upon the orders of the French governor in Quebec. The fortification was called Fort St. Philippe or Fort Miamis, was garrisoned by as many as thirty men, and commanded the fur trade in the area and the portage between the St. Mary’s and Wabash rivers.

In 1747, the Wyandot chief Sanosket (known also as Old Britain or La Damoiselle), encouraged by the British, attacked and burnt the fort. A new French commandant, Capt. Charles DeRaimond, repairedthe fort and used it for three years until a new fort could be completed on the St. Joseph.

[Right side of marker]:The First Playground in Fort Wayne

The six-acre site of the first fort was developed as the city’s first playground through the efforts of Addie Guldlin, after whom the present-day park is named.

Concerned that children had no safe places to play in turn-of-the-century Fort Wayne, Mrs. Guldlin and several other “progressive” women used their club associations
The First French Fort Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 20, 2009
2. The First French Fort Marker
Close-up view of the right side of the historical marker.
to raise the funds to create a large, safe place for hundreds of children to play, complete with elaborate playground equipment. The playground was dedicated on May 20, 1911. This was all swept away in the great flood of 1913.
 
Location. 41° 4.858′ N, 85° 9.067′ W. Marker is in Fort Wayne, Indiana, in Allen County. Marker is at the intersection of Van Buren Street and Michaels Avenue, on the right when traveling north on Van Buren Street. Touch for map. This historical marker is located at the southeastern end of the Sherman Boulevard Bridge, right next to a state of Indiana historic marker entitled "Fort Miamis.". Marker is in this post office area: Fort Wayne IN 46802, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Fort Miamis (here, next to this marker); Old Aqueduct Club Memorial (approx. 0.2 miles away); Site of the Fort Wayne College (approx. half a mile away); The Canal House (approx. 0.6 miles away); "Johnny Appleseed" (approx. 0.6 miles away); The First Police Station (approx. 0.7 miles away); Flood Retention Walls (approx. 0.7 miles away); Journal Gazette Building (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort Wayne.
 
Categories. Charity & Public WorkForts, CastlesMilitaryWar, French and Indian
 
The First French Fort / The First Playground in Fort Wayne Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 20, 2009
3. The First French Fort / The First Playground in Fort Wayne Marker
The First French Fort / The First Playground in Fort Wayne Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, July 20, 2009
4. The First French Fort / The First Playground in Fort Wayne Marker
View of historical marker seen along Van Buren Street, between the "Fort Miamis" historical marker and the Sherman Boulevard Bridge.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 24, 2010, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. This page has been viewed 2,589 times since then and 127 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 24, 2010, by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio.
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