Scope and Contents
The collection contains a letter from Nicholas McCarty to his son, Nicholas McCarty, Jr.,
while attending Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.
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.
Nicholas McCarty, Sr. was born on September 26, 1795, in Moorefield, Hardy County,
Virginia (now West Virginia). He settled in Indiana in 1823, where he became a
successful businessman. In 1828, he married Margaret Hawkins with whom he had four
children, Susanna, Nicholas, Margaret, and Frances. In addition to his business
ventures, McCarty was also a public servant. He was a Canal Fund commissioner
(1832-1836); Indiana State Senator (1849-1852); and Indianapolis City Councilman
(1853-1854). McCarty lost bids for U.S. Representative (1847) and Governor of Indiana
(1852). He died on May 17, 1854.
Nicholas McCarty, Jr. was born on February 8, 1834, in Indianapolis, Indiana. He
attended Brown University (Providence, RI) until his father’s death required him to
return to Indianapolis. He managed the family’s affairs well, growing the estate to
include most of what is now the west side of Indianapolis. While McCarty was active in
Republican politics throughout his life, he never held a public office. He played a
significant role in the building of the first bridge at Kentucky Avenue, which connected
Indianapolis with the southwestern portion of the city, as well as the building of the Belt
Railroad. He never married and died on January 8, 1916.
“Nicholas McCarty, Jr.” Citizens Historical Association. March 1934. In McCarty, Indiana Biography
Clipping File. Indiana State Library.
Shepherd, Rebecca A., Charles W. Calhoun, Elizabeth Shanahan-Shoemaker, and Alan F. January,
comp. A Biographical Directory of the Indiana General Assembly, Volume 1, 1816-1899. Indianapolis:
The Select Committee on the Centennial History of the Indiana General Assembly, 1980.