If the typical Hoosier does little to celebrate this landmark date, our younger citizens make up for our oversight. Indiana history is taught in fourth-grade classrooms, and many students take part in the Statehood Day Essay Contest, which takes place every year in the fall with finalists invited to the Statehouse for a ceremony in the Rotunda.
Corydon is an especially popular field trip destination because its historic buildings tell the story of Indiana’s infancy. The original Federal-style capitol still stands on East Walnut Street; its 40-foot square walls were made of limestone from local quarries, testament to what would become a significant Indiana industry.
The first state office building was constructed in 1817 and housed the state auditor and treasurer. The state’s money allegedly was kept in a vault in the cellar.
Corydon remained the state capital until 1825, when the seat of government moved north to Indianapolis, and the capitol building became the Harrison County Courthouse. The building was restored and opened as a state historic site in 1930.
Andrea Neal is a teacher at St. Richard’s Episcopal School in Indianapolis and adjunct scholar with the Indiana Policy Review Foundation. Contact her at email@example.com.