Lincoln Funeral Train Commemoration Planned in San Pierre

Abraham LincolnThe unique event of a train stopping in San Pierre in 1865, which carried the coffin of assassinated President Abraham Lincoln, will be remembered in that community with a program this afternoon at 2 p.m.

The Starke County Historical Society will also place a rock monument with an appropriate bronze plaque on the grounds near where the Monon Line railway, which carried the President’s body through northwestern Indiana, once operated. Continue reading

Starke County to Celebrate Lincoln Funeral Train Anniversary

Abraham LincolnThe western Starke County community of San Pierre will be the focus of area attention the afternoon of  Saturday, May 2nd. Starke County’s Historical Society has planned a program to commemorate the travel of President Abraham Lincoln’s funeral train through the area on May 1, 1865. Continue reading

Historical Society Buys Knox Family Practice Building

Seated: Dr. and Mrs. Walter Fritz; standing, Ron Vendl, president of the Starke County Historical Society.

Seated: Dr. and Mrs. Walter Fritz; standing, Ron Vendl, president of the Starke County Historical Society.

Dr. and Mrs. Walter Fritz transferred ownership of the former Knox Family Practice building and parking lot at 1520 South Heaton Street in Knox to the Starke County Historical Society  yesterday in a signing ceremony at the 1st Source Bank in Plymouth.

The property is to be developed as additional display and storage space for the Starke County Museum now located at 401 South Main Street in Knox. The Main Street building, the home of former Indiana Governor Henry F. Schricker, will continue to be a major area attraction. Continue reading

Starke County Historical Society Building Fund Gets a Boost

Ron Vendl, president of the Starke County Historical Society, accepts a check for $5,000 from Blanche Richardson, President of the Starke County Genealogical Society, while other members of the Genealogical Society look on,  Front Row:  Ron Vendl, Alice Dolezal, Blanche Richardson, Ida Kennedy, Susie Szynalski,  Back Row:  Audrey Kinezian and Patty Williams.

Ron Vendl, president of the Starke County Historical Society, accepts a check for $5,000 from Blanche Richardson, President of the Starke County Genealogical Society, while other members of the Genealogical Society look on, Front Row: Ron Vendl, Alice Dolezal, Blanche Richardson, Ida Kennedy, Susie Szynalski, Back Row: Audrey Kinezian and Patty Williams.

The Starke County Historical Society received a check for $5,000 from the Starke County Genealogical Society on Sunday at the annual museum open house on Sunday. The gift will be added to the museum’s building and acquisition fund. The museum is currently using only the Main Street home of former Gov. and Mrs. Henry F. Schricker. Continue reading

Celebrate the Season at the Starke County Museum

Schricker Living Room Tree

This traditional Christmas tree is in the Schricker living room at the Starke County Museum.

The home of former Indiana Governor Henry F. Schricker is ready for the Christmas season. A “memory tree” is at the front door on the outside, and the old fashioned Christmas tree stands fully decorated the the Schricker living room.

The Starke County Museum, which is housed in the home, will be open at 1 p.m. Sunday, Dec.7th. to observe the Christmas holiday. Hot cider and cookies will be served. Visitors will also have time to make a short visit to all three floors and see the exhibits of Starke County history. Continue reading

Starke County Historical Society Announces Museum Capital Campaign

Starke County Historical Society

The Starke County Historical Society Museum is currently located in the former Gov. Henry F. Schricker home at 401 S. Main St. in Knox.

The Starke County Historical Society hopes to move its museum into a new building within the next three years. It’s currently located in the home of former Indiana Gov. Henry F. Schricker at 401 South Main Street in downtown Knox. Historical Society President Ron Vendl says the home is “jam packed with items of historical significance.” He adds there is no space left to store or display things. Family physician and longtime historical society benefactor Dr. Walter Fritz has offered to sell the historical society his medical office building at 1520 South Heaton St. to use as an additional museum. The 2,550 square-feet of space on the main floor is equal to that of the Schricker home, with an additional 2,100 square feet of storage space in the the basement. Continue reading

Studebaker to Be Featured at Annual Starke County Historical Society Meeting

StudebakerThe 40th annual meeting of the Starke County Historical Society, tonight, will feature as guest speaker, author Patrick J. Furlong, whose presentation will be “The rise and fall of the Studebaker Corporation.” Business includes the election of officers and 11 members to the board: one from each township in the county and two at-large members. The Knox schools also name representatives to the Society’s board. Continue reading

Enjoy a Historic Tram Tour of Bass Lake This Weekend

The popular song "Let Me Call You Sweetheart" was written at the Center View Hotel at Bass Lake.

The popular song “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” was written at the Center View Hotel at Bass Lake.

Take a slow ride around Bass Lake this weekend on a historic tram and learn about the colorful history of the popular Starke County attraction. Jim Nierman says the tours only take place during the Bass Lake Festival. He and the other guides point out 40 or so attractions on the 90 minute rides. Nierman has been studying the history of Bass Lake for the past 60 years. He says parts of “The Wizard of Oz” and the book “Ben Hur” were written at the lake. So was the song “Let Me Call You Sweetheart.” It was composed at the Center View Hotel.  Bass Lake was also a favorite vacation spot for Chicago mobster Diamond Joe Esposito in the 1920s. The Starke County Historical Society is a co-sponsor of this year’s tours.

They leave from the Bass Lake Property Owners Association building Saturday, July 26 at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Sunday tours depart at 9 and 11 a.m. Tickets are $4 for adults and $3 for children ages 12 and under.

Starke County Historical Society Loans Horse to Library

Starke County Library HorseA special piece from the Starke County Historical Society is on loan to a local library. Fred and Judy Parker of Boca Raton, Fla., formerly of Starke County, donated a 1920s antique carousel horse to the museum a few years ago. Until recently it’s been on display at the Starke County Museum. Space there is limited, so the historical society board wanted to find a special spot to display the piece for public enjoyment. Continue reading

Starke County Community Foundation Gives Generously to Local Organizations

A number of charitable organizations are on the receiving end of more than $40,000 in grants from the Starke County Community Foundation. The gifts are made possible through the foundation’s endowment fund, which is supported by gifts to the SCCF. The money is invested. Each year some of the interest goes back into the fund to help it grow, while some is given locally in the form of scholarships and grants. Continue reading

Volunteers Needed to Spearhead Bicentennial Celebration Pillars

Indiana BicentennialStarke County’s participation in Indiana’s upcoming bicentennial celebration may be limited unless organizations or individuals step up and volunteer to help with event planning.

Commissioner Kathy Norem says the county’s only commitment right now is to be part of the 92 county torch relay in 2016. According to the bicentennial website, it’s “designed to promote and unify the state by connecting people, communities and regions. Hoosiers will also symbolically “pass the torch,” connecting past and current generations to future ones to IGNITE our future.”

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Knox Council Once Again Tables Museum Relocation Discussion

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Starke County Historical Society has hit another roadblock as they seek to relocate their museum. The Knox City Council this week refused to give the Historical Society permission to lease the city’s railroad right-of-way on U.S. 35, across from the visitor’s center, but Marvin McLaughlin with the Historical Society said this won’t necessarily stop them from establishing the new building.

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Knox City Council to Discuss Several Items in Tuesday Meeting

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Knox City Council will meet Tuesday night with a full agenda.

Prior to the 7 p.m. regular meeting, the council members will hold an executive session to discuss the fireman’s insurance benefits.

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Possible Relocation in the Future for the Starke County Museum

Knox City Council

Knox City Council

The Starke County Historical Society is looking to relocate their museum to the area across from the visitor’s center in Knox on U.S. 35, but they’ll need the city’s cooperation in order to do so. Marvin McLaughlin with the Historical Society approached the city council at their meeting Tuesday night with a proposal for a new building to house the museum, but he wasn’t asking for money; rather, McLaughlin said the Historical Society would like to lease the railroad right-of-way.

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Starke County Historical Society’s Annual Dinner to Feature Makers of Belle Gunness Documentary

Historian Bruce Johnson  and Film Producer Stephen Ruminski

Historian Bruce Johnson and Film Producer Stephen Ruminski

The Starke County Historical Society’s annual meeting is Thursday, Nov. 21 at 6 p.m. at the Knox High School Cafeteria.

A special presentation by Bruce Johnson and Stephen Ruminski from LaPorte will be featured. They have researched the material and written the script for the award winning documentary, The Gunness Mystery. This is a portrayal of the life of Belle Gunness of LaPorte who lured wealthy men into her farm home. After a time, she would take all of their possessions and eventually kill them. She was often known as Lady Bluebeard.

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Starke County Historical Society Christmas Open House This Weekend

Kaylee Krom brought in 65 of her collection of 200 "Beanie Babies" for the display.

The Annual Starke County Historical Society Christmas Open House is scheduled for this Sunday, Dec. 2 from 1–3 p.m. CT at the Starke County Historical Society Museum, located 401 S. Main St. in Knox.

A new exhibit is on display just in time for this year’s Open House. Kaylee Krom brought in 65 Beanie Babies from her collection, including three of her favorites.

The Knox Community High School Showstoppers will performing Christmas favorites from 2–3 p.m. to help us get into the mood for the season.

You are invited to tour the museum, listen to great music and enjoy cookies and hot cider.