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Indiana Roadtrip

Next Stop Newburgh Indiana

Newburgh

Newburgh is a town located just east of Evansville, Indiana along the Ohio River and my next load brings me up there. Newburgh is locally known for its charming, historic downtown district that features a number of specialty stores, antique shops, and quaint dining establishments along its riverfront.

Also due to its top-rated schools and family-friendly atmosphere, the town remains a popular residential community for people working in or near Evansville.

By 1850 Newburgh was one of the larger riverports between Cincinnati and New Orleans. It also was the first town north of the Mason–Dixon line to be captured by Confederate forces during the Newburgh Raid as part of the American Civil War.

Shortly after the mid-nineteenth century Newburgh’s growth leveled off until the economic boom of the 1960s and 1970s resulted in substantial growth as a bedroom community for families looking for new housing developments near Evansville.

Top 3 Things to do near Newburgh, Indiana

1. Dream Car Museum

The Dream Car Museum is presented by Bennett Motors where the Corvette sits High in the Sky! See the cars of your dreams. They have something for EVERYONE! Over 50 cars & trucks! Includes exotics, classics, muscle cars, race cars, movie and TV cars, memorabilia and so much more! FREE and open to the public. They offer guides and tours for groups of all ages and sizes. Donations accepted for local charities.

This is a hidden gem and an awesome experience. You could easily spend a few hours in this air conditioned and very clean exhibit. The guides, both Ken and Josh are super hosts, very knowledgeable and friendly. They add much to this experience.

Thanks to Bennett Motors for providing this. Great job!! I never dreamed a collection of this caliber was right in our back yard!

Navigation: 2400 N Heidelbach Ave, Evansville, IN 47711-3208 | Website: dreamcarmuseum.com
2. USS LST Ship Memorial

“To visit one of the last boats that won WW2, is like stepping back in time to discover a piece of Evansville and the nation’s history. The LST 325 is a well preserved landing craft maintained and guided by a dedicated group of volunteer enthusiasts. See where the brave sailors slept, ate, and fought as they lead up to V day off the coast of France. The story behind how the LST 325 survived an moved on to another life in the Greek Navy, discovered in moth balls, restored, reclaimed, and recrewed by some of the surviving American sailors to make the hazardous sail back to the Evansville port where it was built. Sit behind the 30 and 50 caliber guns to get a feel of what our boys went though!” , says JerryIndiana74.

This is a very interesting tour that gives you a look into the lives of the soldiers who invaded on D Day. Don’t miss it!

Navigation: 840 Lst Dr, Evansville, IN 47713-3108 | Website: www.lstmemorial.org

 

3. Evansville Museum of Arts, History & Science

The Evansville Museum of Arts, History & Science is one of Southwestern Indiana’s most established cultural institutions. The museum is a good way to get some insight into the history of today. Admission also gets you to the planetarium show and the EMTRAC railroad museum which is next door.

The Evansville Museum of Arts, History & Science is a general museum located in the Historic District in Downtown Evansville. The Museum’s roots have been traced to the Ladies’ Literary Club in the year 1874. Since its founding, the Evansville Museum has had several homes; the Museum has stood at its current site since the 1950s.

The Museum offers exhibitions, educational happenings and family programming that feed the mind and soul. Watch for events exploring art, history and science and make sure to see the exciting, panoramic films in the Koch Immersive Theater! Enriching Lives Through Preservation, Exploration, Enlightenment & Amazement- Go check it out!

Navigation:411 SE Riverside Dr, Evansville, IN 47713-1037 | Website: www.evansvillemuseum.org

 

History

As a town situated on the fertile banks of the Ohio River, Newburgh has a long and rich history of human activity. Western explorers first arrived in the area in the 17th century. But for centuries prior to that it had been inhabited by the Shawnee and was near the center of prehistoric Mississippian culture even as late as 1450 A.D.

Evidence of this prehistoric society remains today at Angel Mounds, a National Historic Landmark, and Ellerbusch Site, both approximately two miles west of Newburgh.

The principal founders of Newburgh are John Sprinkle and Abner Luce. Sprinkle, a businessman of German descent, landed in Newburgh in the spring of 1803, thirteen years before Indiana entered the Union as the 19th state. He secured land grants in 1812 and in 1818 platted what became known as Sprinklesburgh (sometimes called “Mount Pleasant”). It was the first town in Warrick County. The original plat of Sprinklesburgh consisted of about 12 blocks immediately west of today’s downtown Newburgh.

Abner Luce founded Newburgh almost directly to the east of Sprinklesburgh in 1829. In 1841 Luce’s plat was merged with Sprinkelsburgh and the name of the town was changed to Newburgh.

However, it was Samuel Short’s land, a strip on the block west of State Street, that now has some of the most visible and important land in today’s downtown Newburgh.

Early on in its history Newburgh enjoyed prosperity. By 1850, the town had grown to be one of the largest riverports on the Ohio-Mississippi River between Cincinnati and New Orleans. Much of its growth in this time period was due to coal mining and its beneficial location on the Ohio River. The first underground mine shaft in Indiana was sunk in Newburgh in 1850.

Regional economic dominance

However, when the national railway system came to southern Indiana, it bypassed Newburgh completely in favor of Evansville, beginning a permanent shift in regional economic dominance.

According to a number of historical sources, Newburgh was a prominent stop on the Underground Railroad between the mouth of the Little Pigeon River and Lake Michigan.

The Newburgh Raid

On July 18, 1862, Newburgh was the first town north of the Mason-Dixon line to be captured by the Confederate forces during the American Civil War. It would come to be known as the Newburgh Raid. Colonel Adam “Stovepipe” Johnson, with a partisan band, crossed the Ohio River and confiscated supplies and ammunition without a shot being fired.

The Confederates would have been unable to shell the city (as promised) had Newburgh put up a fight. The Confederates’ “cannons” were an assemblage of a stove pipe, a charred log, and wagon wheels. The raid convinced the federal government that it was necessary to supply Indiana with a permanent force of regular Union Army soldiers to counter future raids. Many of the structures used in this raid are still standing, including The Exchange Hotel.

Newburgh’s economy benefited from the construction of the Lock and Dam 47 in the 1920s, and its replacement in 1974 with the Newburgh Lock and Dam. The town has also benefited from the arrival, and later expansions, of the Aluminum Company of America (ALCOA) in the 1950s and then the 1970s. Many of Newburgh’s residents are commuters to businesses and industry in Evansville and surrounding areas.

In 1994, Newburgh leaders planned to annex large areas that would have extended town limits to Frame Road (west) and SR 66 (north and east).From a planning perspective, this would have given Newburgh the ability to plan land use for large open, undeveloped areas. However, by 2001 the town’s leadership shifted its focus away from annexation toward planning in the well-established current town limits.

On November 6, 2005, the Evansville Tornado of November 2005 caused 25 deaths in nearby Evansville. Newburgh suffered extensive property damage and some injuries, but suffered no fatalities during the 2:06 AM strike.

 

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