Evansville in Vanderburgh County, Indiana — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
The Short Lived Canal
The W&E was extended south in the late 1840's through the abandoned cross-cut canal works to Worthington and then south following the old proposed Central Canal route. The Wabash and Erie Canal was completed to Lamasco, a separate settlement to the west of Evansville, in 1853. Though fully operational for only a short seven-year period, the 468-mile-long canal drew national attention to the Evansville area and spurred a rapid increase in population and wealth in the 1850's.
The canal in Evansville included a basin used for turning boats for return trips and docking facilities for loading and unloading passengers and cargo.
Recognized as the longest canal in the United States, this gigantic enterprise was doomed to failure by the growing presence of railroads. The canalís official demise was in 1873. Basins and other sections of the canal profile were filled.
In the 1880's the leaders of Vanderburgh County recognized the need for a new courthouse. The site chosen was the Union Block in Evansville, the location of the drained Wabash and Erie Canal Basin.
The Courthouse, designed by Henry Wolters of Louisville, Kentucky, and completed in 1891, is a massive edifice, proudly displaying the finest Indiana limestone. The main rectangular building is symmetrically balanced, with a broad pavilion projecting from each of the long sides. A soaring dome crowns the building at the crossing point of the pavilions and the axis of the main building. The ornate decorations of the exterior are reflective of the equally ornate and rich treatment of the interior.
Vanderburgh County was one of ten Indiana counties with large Irish populations. Next to German-Americans in Evansville, they
By the way:
The passenger packet Pennsylvania was the first boat to reach Evansville from Lake Erie, via the canal, September 23, 1853.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Wabash & Erie Canal marker series.
Location. 37° 58.406′ N, 87° 34.342′ W. Marker is in Evansville, Indiana, in Vanderburgh County. Marker is at the intersection of NW 4th Street and Vine Street, on the right when traveling north on NW 4th Street. Touch for map. Located on the South/West (side-walk) corner of the Vanderburgh County "Old Courthouse" (a.k.a.: The Olde' Courthouse - - Catacombs) in Evansville, Indiana. Marker is in this post office area: Evansville IN 47708, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Vanderburgh County World War I Honor Roll (here, next to this marker); Sheriff's Residence and Jail Vanderburgh County World War II Honor Roll (within shouting distance of this marker); Wabash and Erie Canal (within shouting distance of this marker); McCurdy - Sears Building (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Holy Trinity Parish Sesquicentennial (about 400 feet away); Albion Fellows Bacon (approx. 0.2 miles away); Ohio River Levee (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Evansville.
Also see . . .
1. "The men who dug the Canal" ::. A light and lively song with many old photos of canal builders in the process of digging a canal. (Submitted on October 13, 2011, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
2. "Angel of the Canal" ::. Many fell ill digging canals. In frontier days there were few doctors and medicine was scarce. In the Brecksville, Ohio area Mrs. Johnson became known as the "Angel of the Canal" for her care of the ill. (Submitted on October 13, 2011, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
3. Video (Two Parts) - - "An Evansville Treasure . . ." (Courtesy -- "Feel The History") :: (Submitted on December 13, 2012, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Man-Made Features • Settlements & Settlers • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 13, 2011, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. This page has been viewed 493 times since then and 39 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on October 13, 2011, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.