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New County Historians Appointed in Five Indiana Counties

January 18, 2021

Five new Indiana county historians have been appointed, in Pulaski, Delaware, Vigo, La Porte and Shelby counties, with their terms beginning January 2021.

New Pulaski County Historian Mary Conner is a docent at the Pulaski County Historical Society, where she has been a member since 1995, and has served on the board and committees. Conner is a civilian reenactor representing the home front during WWII, and she has been working on family research for more than 25 years. In 1997, her family’s farm was awarded the Hoosier Homestead Award. Conner also serves as a board member and fundraising co-chair for Special Olympics Pulaski County.

New Delaware County Historian Karen Vincent is currently board president of the Delaware County Historical Society and recently retired from a 32-year career at Minnetrista in Muncie, where she worked with a variety of initiatives, including collections, exhibits, programs, events and education. Vincent holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Ball State University and attended the Seminar for Historical Administration in Williamsburg, Virginia. She has served as president of the Association of Indiana Museums as well as on boards and committees for several historical organizations. Her areas of special interest are the Gas Boom and industry in East Central Indiana, particularly Ball Brothers Company, makers of the iconic fruit jar, and notable women from Delaware County.

New Vigo County Historian Timothy Crumrin holds a bachelor’s degree in European history and a master’s degree in American history from Indiana State University, and he received the prestigious Eli Lilly Lifetime Achievement in Indiana History Award from the Indiana Historical Society in 2014 for his contributions to history. Crumrin is an award-winning historian and author and has written or edited more than 35 scholarly publications and made numerous presentations at conferences. In addition to winning two national awards of merit from the American Association of State and Local History for his programs at Conner Prairie Museum, he received a national Telly Award as writer and director of the PBS documentary “Harvesting the Past.” He has served on the board of directors of the Vigo County Historical Society since 2014.

New La Porte County Historian Bruce Johnson holds degrees in education from Ball State and Valparaiso Universities and has been a guest lecturer at Purdue University Northwest. He taught Indiana history to fourth graders for 25 years and organized annual field trips for students to visit the Indiana Statehouse and Indianapolis museums. Johnson serves on the board of directors for the La Porte County Historical Society and the Carmel Cemetery Association, and he was a charter member of the La Porte County Genealogical Society. He has presented his programs on “Famous Hoosiers” in literature, motion pictures, inventions, flight and sports throughout the state. In 2008, he researched, wrote, narrated and co-produced the documentary film “The Gunness Mystery.” Johnson is the recipient of many awards, including the Lifetime Achievement Award from People to People International, the Historian of the Year from the La Porte County Historical Society and Educator of the Year from the American Legion of Indiana.

New Shelby County Historian William Aughe has been researching genealogies for more than 15 years across Indiana and Kentucky. He is a member of the Grover Center Museum and Historical Society and Shelby County Genealogical Society as well as other organizations. Recently, Aughe served as a volunteer for the Irvington Historical Society and on the boards of the Irvington Historic Landmarks Foundation and the Historic Irvington Community Council.

In addition, a number of other Indiana county historians have been reappointed to new three-year terms, beginning January 1, 2021. Those county historians are as follows:

Brown County – Diana Biddle
Dearborn County – Jenny Awad
Decatur County – Russell Wilhoit
Dubois County – Arthur Nordhoff Jr.
Grant County – William Munn
Johnson County – Max Fitzpatrick
Madison County – Stephen Jackson
Miami County – Kreig Adkins
Montgomery County – Dian Moore
Morgan County – Don Adams
Owen County – Anton Neff
Pike County – Sandra McBeth
Porter County – Kevin Pazour
Randolph County – Gregory Hinshaw
Starke County – Venita Cunningham
Sullivan County – Donna Adams
Union County – Vicky Logue
Vermillion County – Dail Henry
Warren County – Terri Wargo
Wells County – James Sturgeon
Whitley County – Mark Parker

The Indiana Historical Society and the Indiana Historical Bureau thank all Indiana county historians for their service and dedication to local history.

In 1981, through an effort to improve the historical communication network in the state, the Indiana Historical Society and the Indiana Historical Bureau established the Indiana County Historian Program.

County historians serve as volunteers appointed by the Indiana Historical Society and Indiana Historical Bureau to promote local history in their counties, connect individuals and groups with history resources, promote collaboration between local history organizations and maintain connections with the Indiana Historical Society and Indiana Historical Bureau.

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