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Indiana History

Indiana History
Research and Notebook Resources by Jodi Small


Indiana Shutterfold
Why did LaSalle Travel minit book (1 student)
Hoosier Hall of Fame Matchbooks
My City Tab Book
Why did LaSalle Travel minit book (2 students)
Government File Folders
Design a Postcard (for your city)

Map of LaSalle’s Travels

Age Requirements Flap Book
How Did My Family Get to Indiana?
Battle of Tippecanoe Shutterbook
Automobile Side by Side
Family Tree Book
Indian Chiefs Twice Folded Book
More Than Corn in Indiana Flap Book
State Symbols Simple Fold
Hoosier Flap Book

Extreme Weather Triangle

State Motto Simple Fold
Pioneer Life Flap Book

Indy 500 Tri-fold

Timeline Notebook Page
Pioneer Creative Writing Pocket
Tribes in Indiana and What does Indiana mean?
Mounds Shutterflap Book

Levi Coffin House Flap Book 

Famous Hoosier Report Pocket

Where are we?

Using a map of the United States, locate Indiana.
Research your family roots.  How did your family arrive in Indiana?

Learn more about your city.

Notebook Resources:
Indiana Shutterfold
My City Tab Book
Design a Postcard (for your city)
How Did My Family Get to Indiana?
Family Tree Book

Other avenues for exploration
Learn about your county and the cities it encompasses.
Learn the counties that border yours.

State Symbols

State Flower - Peony
State Tree- Tulip
State Bird- Cardinal
State Motto - Crossroads of America  (Why?  Because we have more miles of interstate per square mile than any other state)
State Nickname- Hoosier State
State Flag Information-

Our state flag was adopted in 1917.  It is mostly blue.  The golden torch represents liberty and enlightenment.  The thirteen outer stars represent the original 13 colonies.  The inner 5 stars represent the states that were admitted to the Union before Indiana.  The larger star above the torch represents Indiana, the 19th state admitted to the Union.


1000BC – 1650 AD – Indians lived and built mounds in Indiana and around Mississippi
1679 – LaSalle explored northern Indiana
1763 – English take over the French forst
1778 – George Rogers Clark leads Americans to take over English control of Fort  Vincennes
1787 – the Northwest territory established
1800 – Indiana Territory separates from the Northwest territory
1800 – Vincennes becomes the capital of Indiana Territory
1811 – William Henry Harrison defeated Tecumseh at the Battle of Tippecanoe
1812 – Battle of Mississinewa
1813 – Capital moved to Corydon from Vincennes
1816 – Indiana becomes the 19th state
1825 – Capital moved to Indianapolis from Corydon
1909 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway is built
1911 – First Indianapolis 500 race is held
1913 – State song adopted
1917 – Adopted State Flag

Notebook Resources
State Symbols Simple Fold
State Motto Simple Fold
State Flag Coloring Page
State Bird/Flower Coloring Page

Start your Timeline Notebook Page
*Cut off area as indicated (on second page).  Three hole punch first page. Tape top of second page to bottom of first page and fold it up and write "Timeline Notebook Page" as this will be your cover.

Other avenues for exploration
Time Zones in the U.S.
State Seal
State Song

Meet the First Indianians ~ the Mounds Builders

   lived in the valleys of the Mississippi and Ohio rivers
-   Mounds were built in different shapes and sizes.  Some were the shapes of animals.
-   Mounds were used for different functions – burial grounds, religious temples, underground forts or houses for protection
-   Bones have been found in mounds used for burial grounds
-   Farm tools, as well as bone needles and clay tools have been found in the mounds proving they were used for other functions as well

Where can mounds be found?
Sugar Loaf mound – near Vincennes
Angel Mound – near Evansville
Mounds State Park – near Anderson (there are 10 mounds total)

Indiana means “Land of the Indians”
The Indians that lived in what is now Indiana were from the Algonquian Tribe.  This includes the following:

-          Miami – largest tribe in Indiana.  Lived in wigwams made of bark and animals skins.  Grew corn, beans and squash.  Hunted deer, buffalo, and bears with bow and arrow.
-          Delaware
-          Shawnee
-          Kickapoo
-          Ottowa
-          Wea
-          Piankeshaw
-          Chippewa
-          Wyandotte
-          Potawatomi

These Indians were wanderers, following the wild animals as they traveled for food.

Notebook Resources
Mounds Shutterflap Book

Tribes in Indiana and What does Indiana mean?

Field Trip Ops:
Mounds State Park, 4306 Mounds Rd, Anderson
There are 10 mounds built by the Adena-Hopewell people.  The Great Mound, almost ˝ mile in circumference, is believed to have been constructed around 160 BC.

Angel Mounds State Historic Site, 8215 Pollack Ave, Evansville
 "Native American Days" - Angel Mounds' flagship event is back again! A weekend of fun will include several demonstrators, including a dance circle and Indian market, as well as food from a number of vendors.

Etljorge Indian Museum

Early Explorers                                      

European Explorers                                                                                   

French settlers from Canada traveled the St. Lawrence River (through Quebec, Canada and north of New York state), through the Great Lakes to the Ohio and Mississippi rivers.  They traded with the Indians.   The French knew that if they built forts along the waterways, they would be able to better trade with the Indians and have control over the waterways.  The French and the Indians had formed a “business relationship” as far as trading for the items they needed.  Fort Vincennes was one of the most successful forts.  Other forts were Fort Miami, near present-day Fort Wayne, and a fort near present-day Lafayette.

Frenchman Robert La Salle learned several native American languages and learned of a “great river” the flowed south.  Explorers from the time of Christopher Columbus were trying to find a way to China, and La Salle hoped this would be it.  He was the first to record his travels in Indiana.

His first attempt brought him down the St. Lawrence River, through Lake Ontario where he portaged to the Ohio River.  When he got to present-day Louisville, Kentucky, he encountered the Falls of the Ohio.  His crew deserted him and he was forced to turn back.

His second attempt brought him down the St. Lawrence river to the Great Lakes (Ontario, Erie and north through Huron).  After starting through Lake Michigan, he stopped in present-day Green Bay, Wisconsin, which they also called Green Bay.  They then canoed down through Lake Michigan to the St. Joseph river, where he stopped at the south bend of the river.  This is present-day South Bend.  There is a marker at the site.  After portaging across to the Kankakee River, he canoed to the Illinois River which led him to the Mississippi River.  This took him down to New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico.  He had succeeded in his journey to find the “great” river.

Notebook Resources
Why did LaSalle Travel minit book (1 student)
Why did LaSalle Travel minit book (2 students)
Map of LaSalle’s Travels


French and Indian War
As the English came over to America, they settled on the east coast and moved west to settle.  They wanted to also trade with the Indians as the French people did, but the Indians did not trust the English.  The English had begun taking their land and forcing them westward.  This was the start of the French & Indian War.  The English won the war in 1763 and took over the French forts.

Revolutionary War
By the 1770’s, new Americans wanted to be free from English rule and make a new country.  This was the start of the Revolutionary War.  In 1778, George Rogers Clark led a group of Americans to Illinois and Indiana to take over the forts from English rule.  They succeeded in taking control of forts in Illinois and started to move to Indiana, but officials urged him to wait until spring.  He did not want to wait and traveled through snow and cold rivers, surprising the English at Fort Vincennes.  The Northwest Territory was formed including present-day OH, IL, MI, WI, IN, and MN.  Even after the Americans defeated the English and took over the forts, the battles did not stop.  The Americans still had to defeat the Indians to take over the land.

Chief Little Turtle
Little Turtle, chief of the Miami Indians, defeated the Americans in a battle at Fort Miami.  President George Washington sent “Mad” Anthony Wayne to Fort Miami to regain control of the fort.  (“Mad” Anthony got his nickname because he took dangerous chances during the Revolutionary War.)  “Mad” Anthony defeated Chief Little Turtle in the Battle of Fallen Timbers in Ohio, just over the border.  At that time, General Wayne built a new fort – Fort Wayne.  Chief Little Turtle signed a peace treaty and encouraged Indians to live in peace.  Little Turtle did not realize the number of settlers that would be moving into their land after the peace treaty was signed.

In 1800, Indiana territory was established and Vincennes was made the capital.

Tecumseh and The Prophet at the Battle of Tippecanoe                                            
After moving their tribe from Western Ohio, Tecumseh and his brother, The Prophet, both chiefs of the Shawnee tribe, began to fight the whites for land.  They traveled down the Mississinewa River to the Tippecanoe River where the Wabash begins (near present day Lafayette.) They built Prophetstown, a place for the Indians to join up for the battles.  This poses a threat to General William Henry Harrison, because Prophetstown is midway between Fort Vincennes and Fort Wayne.  This reduces the ability of free communication between the forts.  Gen. Harrison met with Tecumseh, The Prophet, and their warriors at the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811.  There Harrison won, giving Harrison the nickname “Old Tippecanoe”. 

War of 1812 and the Battle of Mississinewa
Soon after the United States declares war on Great Britain, Chief Little Turtle, who encouraged peace between the Indians and the whites, dies.  The British join forces with the Indians to take over American controlled forts.  Battles are commonplace throughout Illinois, Indiana and Ohio.  Indians unsuccessfully attack Fort Wayne and Fort Harrison (Vincennes) and Americans destroy Indian villages along the Wabash River.  The Americans destroy Prophetstown and other villages along the Tippecanoe River.  Then the Americans get the order to attack Miami Indian villages along the Mississinewa River, but to guarantee the safety of the Indian women and children.  On Dec. 17, 1812, Americans led by Col. Campbell surprise attack four Indian villages near present-day Jalapa.   On Dec. 18, 1812, Indians counterattack Campbell’s army forcing Campbell to retreat.  Campbell’s army had captured 34 women and children and allowed them to ride the horses, causing his army to suffer frostbite in the deep snow and frigid temperatures.  Although the American army retreated, the Indians lost many of their people and the battle for land.

The War of 1812 ended in 1814. 

Frances Slocum
Frances Slocum was born to a Quaker family and lived in Pennsylvania.  She was kidnapped from her home in 1778 at the age of 5, when a group of Delaware Indians robbed her family for food and supplies.   She was brought to Indiana and lived with the Indians the rest of her life.  Her husband was the chief of their Miami Indian tribe, but he was totally deaf, so their tribe did not participate in the Battle of Mississinewa.  Frances’s Indian name was Maconoquah, meaning “Little Bear”.    

Notebook Resources
Battle of Tippecanoe Shutterbook

Indian Chiefs Twice Folded Book

Field Trip Ops
Feast of the Hunter’s Moon, re-enactment of the annual fall gathering of the French and Native Americans that took place at Fort Ouiatenon, a fur trading post near present day West Lafayette, in the mid-1700s.

Tippecanoe Battlefield & Museum, SR 43 off I-65, Battle Ground

Field Trip Ops:
Battle of Mississinewa re-enactment,

Northern Indiana Center for History,

Pioneer Life                                 

Indiana Becomes a State
In 1800, Indiana became a separate territory from the Northwest Territory, and Vincennes was named the capital.  On Dec. 11, 1816, Indiana was named the 19th state of the United States of America.  The first capital was Corydon, and in 1825 the capital was moved to be more centralized in Indianapolis. 

Many people came from Scotland, Ireland and Germany to help build the Wabash and Erie Canal, which connected the Ohio River with Lake Erie.

Indiana became known as “The Hoosier State”. 

Pioneer life
-  Clothes and beds made of animal skins
- Richer people had feather beds
- Cabins built near streams for water supply
- Cabins lit by candles or bear grease oil lamps
- Cabin floors of dirt
- Ate corn, deer and bear meat
- Children learned in a 1 room schoolhouse and did their lessons on slate

Notebook Resources
Hoosier Flap Book
Pioneer Life Flap Book
Pioneer Creative Writing Pocket

Field Trip Op:
Conner Prairie, 13400 Allisonville Rd, Fishers,

Civil War

Levi Coffin and the Underground Railroad                                                                   
Levi Coffin grew up in North Carolina in a Quaker community.  The Quakers wanted to end slavery.  While Levi was growing up, he saw many instances of slaves being treated unfairly.  In 1822, Levi’s brother-in-law asked him if he would like to go west with him.  Levi agreed knowing that he would be living in a state where slavery was against the law.  After traveling to Indiana, Levi moved back to North Carolina with his family where he met his wife, Katy.  After their first child was born, Katy and Levi decided they did not want to raise him in a slave state.  They moved to Newport, Indiana near Richmond and opened a dry goods store.  The Coffins soon found out that Newport was an area where most slaves passed on their way to Canada.  Other families in Newport had set up safe houses, and the Coffin’s house was considered “Grand Central Station” of the underground railroad and Levi was the “stationmaster”.  Levi learned the slavery laws so he could keep slave hunters from entering his house without a search warrant.  On the second floor of the house, behind the bed in the girls room, there was a small door leading to a windowless room.  Levi then moved on to Cincinnati where he continued helping slaves 

Notebook Resources:
Levi Coffin House Flap Book

Field Trip Ops:
Levi Coffin House, 113 US 27, Fountain City

Israel Jenkins house, 7453 E 450 S, Marion

Famous Hoosiers

Virgil Grissom or “Gus”
- Born near Mitchell
- An astronaut
- Grissom Air Force Base named after him

Ernie Pyle
- Born near Dana, Indiana
- attended Indiana University
- became a journalist
- was a war correspondent during WW2

Wilbur Wright
- Born near New Castle
- Invented the airplane

Dan Quayle
- Senator of Indiana and US vice president under George H.W. Bush
- Born in Indianapolis

John Chapman or “Johnny Appleseed”
- coffee sack for a shirt and an old tin pot for his hat
- planted apple seeds and preached to pioneers throughout IN, OH, and IL

Eli Lilly
- lived near Greencastle, Indiana
- studied pharmacology at Depauw University
- opened a drug store in Indianapolis
- founded a pharmaceutical company in Indianapolis and committed himself to only selling the highest quality medicines

Samuel Morris
- a Liberian prince who attended Taylor University
- died before graduating

Benjamin Harrison
- senator of Indiana
- 23rd President of the United States

William Henry Harrison
- led US forces to defeat the Indians in the Battle of Tippecanoe
- earned the nickname “Old Tippecanoe”
- the first governor of Indiana Territory
- 9th president of the United States

“Mad” Anthony Wayne
- earned the nickname “Mad Anthony” during the Revolutionary War
- defeated Little Turtle
- built Fort Wayne

Notebook Resources
Famous Hoosier Report Pocket
Hoosier Hall of Fame Matchbooks

Field Trip Ops:

President Benjamin Harrison’s home,

Grissom Air Museum, US 31, Peru,        

 Dan Quayle Center and Museum,

 Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial,

Wilbur Wright Birthplace & Museum,

 Ernie Pyle State Historic Site,

Indiana Authors

James Whitcomb Riley or “Hoosier Poet”
- Born in Greenfield
- Wrote poems about small town life in Indiana (“Little Orphant Annie, The Old Swimmin’ Hole, and When the Frost is on the Pumpkin”
See When the Frost is on the Punkin' Unit Study for James Whitcomb Riley Report Form

Gene Stratton Porter
- born in Wabash County
- was an author and wildlife photographer
- wrote Freckles, Harvester, Laddie, A Girl of the Limberlost

Charles Major
- born in Indianapolis
- wrote Uncle Tom Andy Bill, Bears of Blue River, A Forest Hearth

Booth Tarkington
- born in Indianapolis
- attended Purdue University
- wrote Penrod, The Two Vanrevels

Lloyd C. Douglas
- born in Columbia City
- was a Lutheran minister
- wrote The Silver Chalice, The Robe

Lew Wallace
- born in Brookville
- was a Civil War Colonel
- wrote Ben Hur
- died in Crawfordsville and is buried there

Field Trip Ops:
James Whitcomb Riley House,

Gene Stratton Porter State Historic Site,

Is there more than corn in Indiana?

What do we grow?   Indiana is in the corn belt, growing corn to feed cattle and hogs.  Soybeans are also grown.

What do we mine?  Coal and limestone

What do we produce?  Northwestern Indiana is the largest steel making area in the US
Pharmaceuticals and medical equipment – Eli Lilly
One of the leading states in production of Ethanol an Biodiesel

First automobiles
Elwood Haynes
- built his first car in Kokomo using bicycle wheels
- joined with the Apperson brothers to build one of the first automobiles
- founded Haynes Stellite Company in 1912

Studebaker brothers
- Clement and Henry Studebaker, Jr.
- automobile manufacturer based out of South Bend

Auburn Automobile Company
- founded by Charles Eckhart in Auburn
- also manufactured Cord automobiles

Notebooking Resources
Automobile Side by Side
More Than Corn in Indiana Flap Book

Field Trip Ops:
Elwood Haynes Museum,

Studebaker National Museum,

Auburn-Cord Duesenberg Museum,

Indiana Government

You will need to do your own research for your representative and for the senators since this information changes. 

Age Requirements:
35 for President or Vice President
30 for Senators
25 for Representatives
30 for Governor                                                                   

Notebooking Resources
Government File Folders (mayor, senators, representative, governor)
Age Requirements Flap Book

Field Trip Op:
February ~ Indianapolis State House (home school day)

Weather Records

Great “Tri-State Tornado” of March 18, 1925
- crossed south eastern Missouri, through Illinois, and southern Indiana
- 695 deaths were reported
- Continuous 219 miles was the longest ever reported in the world
- Harrison county in Indiana, only 4 deaths reported within our state

Palm Sunday tornado outbreak of 1965
- 10 tornados were reported in Indiana
- 162 deaths were reported
- Tornado came through Grant, Clinton and Howard counties injuring 800

Blizzard of 1978
- 20 inches fell during the storm
- Winds made drifts as high as 20 feet
- Indiana State Police closed all Indiana roads
- Travel was impossible

1816 – The year without a summer
- Snow and ice fell during 17 days of May destroying crops
- Snow in June finished off anything that was left
- First week of July, northern US suffered freezing temperatures
- August came with snow, frost and blizzards killing fruit trees

Notebooking Resource
Extreme Weather Triangle


Indianapolis Motor Speedway
- built in 1909
- 2 ˝ mile track
- first race held May 30,1911, 500 mile race
- Indy 500 is held every year during Memorial Day weekend
- First Brickyard 400 race held in 1994
- Infield road course constructed between 1998 and 2000
- Formula One races were held from 2000-07

Hoosier Athletes

Larry Bird
- born in West Baden Springs (French Lick area)
- played basketball for Indiana University under Coach Bob Knight
- played professional basketball for the Boston Celtics (1979-1992)
- returned to Indiana as the Indiana Pacers head coach in 1997

Mark Spitz (not a born Hoosier)
- attended Indiana University
- went on to win 7 gold medals in the 1972 Olympic games

Notebooking Resource
Indy 500 Tri-fold

Field Trip Ops:
Indianapolis 500 museum, 4790 W 16th St., Indy,

NCAA Hall of Champions, 700 W Washington St, Indy,

Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame Museum,

College Football Hall of Fame,

Indiana Baseball Hall of Fame,