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Indiana Territory Sesquicentennial collection

 Collection — Folder: S1981
Identifier: S1981

Scope and Contents

This collection includes a wooden square with commercial printing from Retail Merchants Division, Vincennes Chamber of Commerce in Vincennes, Indiana on 1950/07/01 to 1950/07/04 regarding Vincennes celebration of Indiana Territory Sesquicentennial.


  • 1950

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.

Administrative History

Indiana was originally part of the Northwest Territory, organized in 1787. It was the first new territory created by lands of the Northwest Territory when Ohio decided to enter the Union, and it eventually was split into Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and the eastern region of Minnesota. William Henry Harrison was appointed by President John Adams as the first Governor of Indiana Territory, at the age of twenty-seven. Indians claimed all of Indiana except small sections they gave up claim to in the Greenville Treaty of 1795, following General Wayne's victory at the Battle of Fallen Timbers. Harrison had served as Wayne's aide-de-camp and knew some of the Indian chiefs. The Ordinance of 1787 required that a state government could not be established until the population reached 60,000 but Congress reconsidered and reduced the number to 35,000. The General Assembly met in 1815, an official census having been taken in the 15 counties in Indiana, and petitioned Congress, which passed an Enabling Act, allowing for the construction of a constitution. Indiana was formally admitted to the Union on December 11, 1816.

The Indiana General Assembly passed a law in 1949 to create a Indiana Territory Sesquicentennial Commission to "observe appropriately" in 1950 the 150th anniversary of the establishment of Indiana Territory. Governor Schricker was authorized to appoint the members of the commission. The director of the Indiana Historical Bureau was named as secretary ex-officio, and no appropriation was provided. The sesquicentennial of the Indiana Territory was celebrated in various cities around Indiana, especially in Vincennes, Indiana (the capital of the Indiana Territory in 1800) in 1950, with a traveling exhibit called the Hoosier History Caravan, a wooden nickel souvenir (used as money in Vincennes stores and redeemable in Vincennes banks until 3:00 pm, July 3, 1950), the issuance of 3 cent postage stamps on July 4th, at Vincennes, a commemorative plate, a pageant and a parade, the goal of the commission being to diffuse the commenoration over the state, with as many people participating as possible through an education program rather than just a birthday party. A suggested program of historical interest for men's and women's clubs was provided upon request. Many schools participated by scheduling events. The commission received $2,000 in donations, $267.20 in royalties from commemorative plates and $103.50 from the sale of electrical fixtures from the Hoosier History Caravan, for a total of $2,370.70. Their expenses were $2,328,12, and they donated $42.58 to the Indiana Historical Society upon dissolution of the commission.

"The Hoosier Heritage Caravan: Commemorating the 150th anniversary of Indiana Territory." (1950). Indiana Territory Sesquicentennial Cimmission: Indianapolis, IN. ISLO 977.2 #162. print.

"Indiana Territory". World Atlas. Retrieved 2014/07/31.

"The Indiana territory sesquicentennial". Indiana History Bulletin. 27.2 (1950): 39-44. print. Indiana Territory Sesquicentennial Commission. "Final report". (1951?) Indiana Territory Sesquicentennial Commission: Indianapolis, IN. ILSO 977.2 #165. print.

"The sesquicentennial takes shape". Indiana History Bulletin. 27.3 (1950): 59-60. print.

"Terretorial days of Indiana, 1800-1816". Indiana History Bulletin. 27.5 (1950): 91-120. print.


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 donation.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 1998 by Philip N. Williams. EAD finding aid created 2014/07/31 by Edythe Huffman.
Indiana Territory Sesquicentennial collection
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

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