Category Archives: Stories

Sharing Madam Walker’s History Online

In December 2019, we completed a yearlong project to digitize the library’s collections on one of Indiana’s icons. The purpose of the Madam C.J. Walker Digitization Project was to digitize and catalog 40,000 documents, photographs and artifacts from the library’s Walker collections and make them available online. We assigned a special digitization team to complete […]

New in Destination Indiana: Indianapolis Woman’s Club

The Indianapolis Woman’s Club was founded on Feb. 18, 1875, making it one of the oldest and longest-running clubs of its kind in the country. The purpose of the club was the exchange of ideas through presentation and discussion of papers written by members. Its founders were educated, progressive women who were interested in enriching […]

Hot Off the IHS Press: A Gentleman in the Shadows

The latest release from IHS Press tells the story of one of the most powerful people you’ve never heard of. Gentleman in the Shadows: Benjamin C. Evans Jr. and the Central Intelligence Agency by Douglas A. Wissing is the first-ever biography of Evans, a covert CIA officer and top-level executive during the darkest days of […]

Your Donation Helps Preserve Indiana’s History

Giving Tuesday is Dec. 3, and we’re asking you to help us save part of Indiana’s history! Your generous donation will help us preserve items in our collection that need a little extra TLC, like the items in the Children’s Bureau of Indianapolis Records Collection. Donate to help us preserve this invaluable collection here! Prominent […]

Securing the Vote: Women’s Suffrage Exhibit Hits the Road

Our latest traveling exhibit, Securing the Vote: Women’s Suffrage in Indiana, explores how women across Indiana passionately labored for suffrage through countless meetings, campaigns and grassroots efforts. Before the 1850s, Indiana women had few legal rights and no political power. In 1851, Amanda Way, a Quaker from Randolph County, decided it was time to talk […]

Block by Block: Our Indianapolis Bicentennial Project

In preparation for the City of Indianapolis’ 200th anniversary, the Indiana Historical Society has been curating collections already in the archive and acquiring new related materials. The goal of our Indianapolis History Collecting Initiative is to identify resources about the people, places and events that have shaped the city over the last two centuries. They […]

Country Girl in Town and Back: A Journal of Transitions in Jennings County in the Late 1890s

From The Hoosier Genealogist: Connections, Spring/Summer 2019. To receive Connections twice a year, join IHS  and enjoy this and other member benefits. Back issues of Connections are available through the Basile History Market. Featured image: Years after losing the presidential elections of 1896 and 1900, William Jennings Bryan was still drawing huge crowds. Having unsuccessfully run for president twice, he took to the […]

Angel Tree: Make the Holidays Brighter for a Child in Need

The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program goes back decades, but through the years, its purpose has remained the same: to share the joy of Christmas with struggling families. In Central Indiana, more than 5,300 children living below the poverty line benefitted from an Angel Tree last year. Numbers are expected to grow in 2019, and […]

Conserving the Madam C.J. Walker Collection

From artistic sketches to advertising layouts to architectural drawings to typewritten business documents, translucent and transparent “onionskin” papers are abundant in the IHS archives. But they pose a challenge for conservators, since traditional mending techniques are often not appropriate for these types of papers. Transparent papers are reactive to moisture, and applying a water-based adhesive […]

Every Portrait Tells a Story

“I couldn’t take my eyes off Kitty the first time I ever saw her. And I still, after 69 years of marriage, can’t take my eyes off her. Our wedding was the beginning of a magnificent love affair.” Jim Baker and Kitty Morrison have a true fairy tale love story. They met in 8th grade […]