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Calvin Fletcher papers

 Collection — Folder: S473
Identifier: S0473

Scope and Contents

This collection includes an autographed, signed letter Calvin Fletcher in Indianapolis, Indiana on 1855/01/08 regarding the receipt of seeds and asking Thomas A. Hendricks to deliver a letter to John B. Dillon.


  • 1866/01/08


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Biographical Note

Calvin Fletcher was born February 4, 1798 in Ludlow, Vermont, to Jesse and Lucy Keyes Fletcher. He was the 11th of 15 children. He taught school in Urbana, Ohio to finance his study of law. He was licensed to practice law in Urbana, Ohio in 1821. He married Sarah Hill in 1821 and moved to Indianapolis, Indiana. He defended the persons accused in the Fall Creek Massacre, 1824-1825 and represented an African-American woman who sued for her freedom. He practiced law with Ovid Butler, who founded the Northwestern Christian University, which is now Butler University, and Simon Yandes. He and Sarah had eleven children, and she died in 1854.

Calvin was a township overseer of the poor, county prosecuting attorney, attorney for the fifth judicial circuit (1825-1826), and elected as state senator from 1826-1833. He was an opponent of Jacksonian Democrats, later a Whig, became anti - slavery and was a Republican by 1855. He was elected by the General Assembly as one of the founding directors of the State Bank of Indiana in 1834. In 1857 he founded the Indianapolis Branch Banking Company with Thomas Sharpe and acquired banking interests in Madison, IN. He promoted canal and railroad construction and was appointed director and president of the Indianapolis and Bellefontaine Railroads in 1855. He married Keziah Price Lister Nov. 4, 1855 in Hall County, Maine.

He was a founder of the Indiana Colonization Society in 1829 and the Indiana Historical Society in 1830. He was also active in many charitable organizations, church and educational activities, including serving as a school superintendent for Roberts Chapel. He owned more than 400 acres of land in Marion County and became very involved in farming and agricultural writing and organizations. Much of that land is now known as Fletcher Place Historic Neighborhood District, including Fletcher Place United Methodist Church, now used as condominiums.

He wrote extensive correspondence and kept a diary for most of his life. He died May 26, 1866 and is buried in Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis, Indiana. Mayor Bart Peterson declared February 4, 2003 (Fletcher's 205th birthday) as Calvin Fletcher/Fletcher Place Neighborhood Day in Indianapolis, Indiana.

"Fletcher, Calvin". (1980). In A biographical directory of the Indiana General Assembly . (v.1, pp. 128-129). Indianapolis, IN: Indiana Historical Bureau. Print. ISLI 920 B15G

"Fletcher, Calvin". Find a Grave Memorial. Retrieved 2014/12/22.

"Fletcher, Calvin". Fletcher Place. Retrieved 2014/12/22.

"Fletcher, Calvin". Maine Marriages in 1875. Retrieved 2014/12/22.

"Fletcher, Calvin". U.S., Sons of the American Revolution Membership Applications, 1889-1970. Retrieved 2014/12/22.

"Vanderstel, Sheryl D.". (1994). Fletcher, Calvin. In The Encyclopedia of Indianapolis. (pp. 577-579). Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press. Print. ISLI 977.201 M341Ien


0.01 Cubic Feet (1 folder)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged chronologically.

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a records transfer from Indiana State Library Reference Division on 1932/09/27.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2014/12/23 by Edythe Huffman. EAD finding aid created 2014/12/23 by Edythe Huffman.
Calvin Fletcher papers
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
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Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.