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A TIMELINE OF FAITH AND COMMUNITY:

CARMEL, 1822 TO 1995

1822

About a dozen families settle along the west bank of the White River in the western half of what will become the original Delaware Township of Hamilton County.  Settlers include William Wilkinson, Benjamin Mendenhall, and Silas Moffitt.

1823

Hamilton County organized.  Noblesville designated as county seat.

1824

William McShane becomes first landowner in the original Clay Township by purchasing land in the vicinity of what is now 106th Street and Westfield Boulevard.

1825

McShane builds a cabin and moves his family to the area.

1829

Indianapolis-Peru Road (now Westfield Boulevard/Range Line Road) surveyed through Clay Township. 

1830

Members of the Society of Friends living in Clay Township begin meeting in local homes.  Request permission from nearest quarterly meeting (White Lick) to begin an Indulged Meeting under the supervision of Fairfield Monthly Meeting.  Permission is granted.

 

Friends Meeting establishes a local school.

1832

James Beck and Isaac Sharpe join McShane in Clay Township area.  Originally called Pleasant Grove, it is known today as Home Place (106th Street and College Avenue).

 

Subscription school is organized and held in Isaac Sharpe’s cabin at present-day 106th Street and College Avenue.

 

Regular Methodist class meeting begins in Sharpe’s cabin, called “Sharpe’s Meeting House.”

 

William D. Rooker erects a grist mill on Cool Creek, thereby eliminating the need to travel to mills in Marion County.

1833

Hamilton County is divided into nine townships.  Clay Township occupies the southwest corner of the county.  It is the smallest township, bounded on the west by Boone County, the south by Marion County, the north by present-day 146th Street, and on the east by present-day Westfield Boulevard/Range Line Road.  Delaware Township is bounded on the west by Clay Township, the south by Marion County, the north by 146th Street, and the east by Fall Creek Township.

 

Clay Township Indulged Meeting of Friends granted Preparative Meeting status.  Members name meeting Richland and erect 18 x 20-foot meeting house on the east side of Indianapolis-Peru Road in Delaware Township.  Building also used as Richland School.  Teachers are members of Richland Meeting, but school is open to all citizens in the area.

1834

Methodist Episcopal Church built of logs at Pleasant Grove—at the northwest corner of present-day 106th Street and College Avenue—on land donated by Isaac Sharpe.

 

Hannah Griffith is first regular teacher at Pleasant Grove subscription school.  The school meets in the Pleasant Grove Church.

1835

Methodist Episcopal class established in western Delaware Township.  Six attend first meeting.  Circuit riders conduct occasional services.

 

Richland Friends add room to meeting house.

1836

Methodist class organized in southern central Clay Township.  One year later, a log church is constructed and becomes known as Poplar Grove ME Church.

 

By year’s end, all government land in Delaware Township is sold.

1837

John Phelps, Alexander Mills, Daniel Warren, and Seth Green plat the village of Bethlehem at the boundary of Delaware and Clay townships on the Indianapolis-Peru Road.  Village, consisting of fourteen lots, is to be governed by a town board.

 

Pleasant Grove settlement establishes cemetery behind Pleasant Grove ME Church.

 

Farley School constructed in west central Delaware Township near present-day 106th Street and Keystone Avenue (Indiana 431).  Johnson Farley is teacher.

 

Pleasant Grove School building erected at same corner with church and cemetery.

1841

Richland Preparatory Meeting granted monthly meeting status.  Meeting minutes show Richland Meeting is active in areas of prison reform, equality of sexes, temperance, peace, and abolition of slavery.  Although not as vocally abolitionist as the Westfield Friends, Richland Meeting minutes show frequent references to “African Committee” and “Committee on people of color.”

 

Poplar Ridge Meeting (three miles west of Bethlehem) and Grassy or East Branch Meeting (now Gray Friends), established and join the Richland Monthly Meeting.

1843

Richland Meeting erects frame meeting house.  Also used as school for the area.

1846

Post office established for Bethlehem and named Carmel because the name Bethlehem is already in use.  Postal service to town is weekly.

1848

Methodist Episcopal class organized in Bethlehem with a dozen members.  Meetings at various locations for two years before a church is constructed for $800.  By 1880 it is known as Carmel ME Church.

1849

Samuel Carey enters addition to Bethlehem plat.

 

United Brethren Church established in Bethlehem.

1850

US Census figures for Clay Township: 1,106; Delaware Township: 867.

 

Poplar Grove Friends Meeting House erected in western part of Clay Township.  Log building also serves as school.  By 1852 a frame church replaces the log structure and a separate school building serves the area.

 

Richland Friends Meeting establishes First Day Scripture School before meeting.  Minutes show meeting collects money to aid freed slaves.

 

Rev. Jacob White, Methodist Episcopal circuit rider in Hamilton County, approaches Mattsville area Methodist Episcopal class for donation of land, materials, and labor to construct a chapel on Cool Creek at Mattsville (present day 116th Street and Gray Road).  Now called White Chapel.

 

New frame school erected at Pleasant Grove.  By 1880 it is part of the township system and known as District School #6.

 

Ninety people petition Hamilton County commissioners to change Clay Township name to Carmel Township and move the eastern boundary to White River.  Petition granted but quickly rescinded after objections by eastern Delaware Township citizens.

1853

New school at Pleasant Grove constructed at cost of $550.

1854

New frame church constructed on site of log Pleasant Grove ME church.

1856

New frame Poplar Grove Church erected half a mile east of original church.

1857

Nathan Hawks adds to the original Bethlehem plat.

1860

US Census figures for Clay Township: 1,161; Delaware Township: 1,267.

1862

Pleasant Grove Methodist Episcopal Church splits.  Two factions disagree as to the justification of the war in progress.  Pastor and pro-government faction leaves the church to meet in a nearby schoolhouse.

1864

Pastor G.W. Bowers reunites the Pleasant Grove ME Church.

 

Post office boxes installed at Carmel Post Office.  Service increases to three times a week.

1867

Mt. Zion Baptist Church constructed after several years of meeting in members’ homes.  Active until 1877.

1868

Richland Quarterly Meeting established.  Consists of Richland, Poplar Grove, East Branch meetings.

1869 

Richland Friends build brick schoolhouse on Clay/Delaware township line.  Known as Richland Academy.  This serves as Carmel’s school (K-8) well into the twentieth century.

1870

US Census figures for Clay Township: 1,413; Delaware Township: 1,434.

1874

Town of Bethlehem presents a petition to the Hamilton County commissioners requesting authorization to hold an election for incorporation and requesting the town name to be changed to Carmel, the name of the post office.  Both requests granted.  Incorporation passes by vote of 33-12.

1882

Monon begins laying railroad track in Clay Township.

1883

First Monon train runs through Clay Township and connects Carmel to Indianapolis, Westfield, and Sheridan.

1887

Carmel High School built at Range Line Road and 500 South.  Serves the area until “Old North” is constructed at 420 E. Main Street in 1923.

1892

Richland Friends Meeting changes name to Carmel Friends.

1893

Pleasant Grove ME Church constructs a new church building on original site.

 

New Carmel Friends meeting house built.

1898

Carmel Wesleyan Methodist Church dedicated.  Class met in public halls through most of 1890s.  Church is now located at 761 Range Line Road.

1901

Carmel’s first bank, formed with $5,000 in capital stock, established.  Serves the area until 1930.

1903

Interurban railroad begins serving the Pleasant Grove area.

 

Poplar Grove M.E. Church merges with Carmel Wesleyan Church.

1904

Electricity made available in Carmel.

1906

Artesian well, located at present day 106th Street and Gray Road, is tapped in attempt to drill for natural gas.  Flowing well opened to public.

1911

District schools #6, #7, #8, #9 are consolidated into Clay Center School.  The new school is located at the northeast corner of 116th Street and Clay Center Road.  Serves western Clay Township until 1956 when Orchard Park School opens.

1912 

Carmel Board of Trustees adopts “light ordinance.”  Installation of poles for streetlights begins.

1913

Fire begins in post office and spreads along Main Street, destroying Kinzer store and Odd Fellows Hall.  Also, flood damages Carmel.

 

Carmel Library constructed with money from Carnegie Foundation and local donations.

 

Referendum on changing Clay Township boundary east to White River narrowly defeated.  Citizens east of White River and in Fall Creek Township object.

1914

Orin Jessup Land Company plats a new town called Home Place in the area of the Pleasant Grove community.  It is located on the traction car line.  According to plans, no saloon will be allowed within town limits and no home may be erected costing less than $1,300.

1915

Author Theodore Dreiser and illustrator Franklin Booth visit with Booth’s family in Carmel and Dreiser’s home in Terre Haute.  They collaborate on a book of reminiscences, A Hoosier Holiday.

1919

North and south bound interurban cars crash head-on near 111th Street.  Two are killed and many are injured.

1923 

State Road 31 (Westfield Boulevard/Range Line Road) paved with concrete.  The roadway is 18 feet wide.

 

New Carmel school “Old North” constructed at 420 E. Main Street.  Serves as K-12 school until 1950s.

1924

Carmel inventor Leslie Haines installs automatic “stop and go” lights of his design at intersection of Main Street and State Road 31 in Carmel.

1929

Petition with 201 signatures favoring city water works presented to Carmel Town Board.  By the fall 1930, the water system is installed and serving the town.

1930

U.S. Census Bureau figures for Carmel: 682.

1933

Meridian Street becomes State Road 31 and is paved through Clay Township at a width of 20 feet.  The former State Road 31 (Range Line Road) becomes State Road 431.

 

Gas piped into Carmel.

1938

The last interurban car travels through Clay Township.

1954

Clay Township boundaries redrawn to include Delaware Township west of White River.

1955

Clay Township locates the new Orchard Park Elementary School at 104th Street and Orchard Park South Drive; Building completed in 1956.

 

Father Joseph McDonnell organizes Clay Township Catholics, who meet in Carmel Theatre until Our Lady of Mount Carmel, located at 146th Street and Oak Ridge Road, is completed in 1956.

1957

Metropolitan School District organized, consolidating Clay Township and Carmel City schools.

 

New Carmel High School construction begins at site of “Old North.”  Building is dedicated November 1958.  By 1994, enrollment of high school (grades 9-12) numbers 1,997.

1960

US Census figures for Carmel: 1,442; Clay Township: 9,000.

1961

Northside Drive-In theater tries to locate near 96th Street and Westfield Boulevard.  The neighbors object.  The drive-in succeeds in opening in 1964 and operates until 1981.  In 1988, the area is cleared for single-family housing.

 

Carmel Elementary School opens at 101 Fourth Avenue S.E.  The 1994 enrollment is 508.

 

Carmel Friends build new church at 651 W. Main Street.

1962

Construction begins on Keystone Avenue (Indiana 431) from 86th Street to State Road 31.

 

Zoning approved for Keystone Square shopping center at 116th Street and Indiana 431.

1964

The last service at Pleasant Grove ME Church held after 132 years at this site.  New church is located at 445 E. 111th Street.

 

The consolidated town/township school district is renamed the Carmel Clay School District, consolidating all township schools under a single administration.

 

Carmel Junior High School opens.  1994 enrollment is 1,617.

1965

College Wood Elementary School opens.  It is located on the west side of Carmel at 3rd Avenue.  The 1994 enrollment is 583.

 

Keystone Avenue (State Road 431) is completed to State Road 31.

 

Carmel town board annexes 541-acre parcel of land southeast of town.  Area known as the Keystone Square development will include shopping area, residential area (Woodland Springs apartments), two churches, and a school.  Development budget estimated at $50 million.  The annexation doubles the acreage of Carmel.

 

Carmel Town Hall and Water Works buildings completed.

 

Carmel Clay Educational Foundation formed to supplement actions of school board with assistance from the private sector.

 

Keystone Square Shopping area opens at 116th Street and Keystone Avenue.

1967

Construction of I-465 along the southern edge of Clay Township begins.  Interchanges are located at Meridian Street and Keystone Avenue.

 

The Monon makes its last passenger run through Clay Township.  Freight traffic continues until 1970.

 

Residents vote to shift from town marshal to police department governed by a three-person board.

1969

Groundbreaking for Indiana Farmers Mutual Insurance Company at 106th and Meridian streets; completed in 1970.  By 1995, company employs 150.

 

Fire causes $250,000 damage at Woodland Country Club.

1970

US Census figures for Carmel: 6,578.

 

Carmel reactivates the Chamber of Commerce.

 

Woodbrook Elementary School built.  Enrollment reaches 506 by 1994.

1971

Carmel government becomes more elaborate to accommodate the city’s growth: Carmel holds first primary for Town Board; Carmel Court established; Carmel Plan Commission enlarged to 14 members representing township, with seven members from Carmel; Carmel Clay Comprehensive Plan rewritten by community committees,

 

Carmel named in the busing order for Indianapolis desegregation suit.

1972

Carmel Library moves to new facility on East Main Street, across from Carmel High School.  Dedicated October 1, the structure costs $400,000.

 

City buys old library for city hall.

 

Carmel halts area construction to increase public services to handle growth adequately.

 

Mohawk Trails School opens.  1994 enrollment is 522.

1973

Fidelity Bank chartered and opened in Carmel.

 

Topics Newspapers, Inc. locates offices at 9615 North College Avenue.

 

Town Board votes to hire a Town Manager to supervise daily town business. 

1974

Carmel area schools are dropped from the federal desegregation suit by the U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago.

 

R.V. Welch begins development along Meridian Street at 116th Street.  By 1984, Welch has constructed office towers, low-rise buildings and a restaurant.  Investing more than $50 million, Welch pays for street widening, underground utilities, and extensive landscaping.  By the time the area is annexed by Carmel in 1976, U.S. 31 has become a commercial corridor.

 

Clay Junior High School opens at 5150 E. 126th Street.  The 1994 enrollment is 1,482.

 

Our Lady of Mt. Carmel dedicates new sanctuary at 1045 W. Gray Road.  Former church converted to school gym.

 

Referendum held on city status.  Voters decide to convert to 4th-class city and adopt the mayor/city council form of government.

1975

Albert B. Picket elected first mayor of Carmel.

1976

Plan Commission reorganized under city management with seven members from Carmel, six from township.

1979

Mysterious illness strikes students and faculty of Orchard Park Elementary School.  In November, health officials close school and sanitize facility with air filters.  Building is used as Carmel Clay School offices from 1981-1985.  Reopened as school in September 1985.  Building renovated in 1990-1991 at cost of $7.5 million.  The 1994 enrollment is 618.

 

Groundbreaking for Delta Faucet Company headquarters on North Meridian Street.  Facility is occupied in October 1980.  By 1995 250 are employed at the site.

1980

U.S. Census figures for Carmel: 18,272 residents and 6,431 housing units; Clay Township: 32,795 residents.

 

Jane Reiman, Carmel’s first female mayor, elected.

 

Forest Dale Elementary School constructed.  The 1994 enrollment reaches 526.

 

Meridian Corridor Plan adopted by council.  Sets standards for construction of high-rise buildings.

1981

Carmel Christian Church dedicated.

 

Four new Clay Township congregations use Carmel-Clay schools for weekly worship—St. Mark’s United Methodist, St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic, Brethren Church of Carmel, and Lakeview Christian Center.  Each pays township school district $25 per use.

1983

Carmel High School and Clay Junior High School named among top 100 schools in nation.

 

Flowing well renovation completed.

 

Saint Elizabeth Seton Catholic Church breaks ground for building at 106th Street and Haverstick Road.  Parish had met for two years at Woodbrook Elementary School.

1984

Special census of Carmel conducted to assist in creating a comprehensive plan for future development.  Census shows Carmel population of 19,212 and Clay Township of 34,826.

1985

St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic Church dedicates its new building on Haverstick Road.  The $5 million facility serves 800 families.

 

St. Vincent Hospital opens at 13500 North Meridian Street.  The 100-bed, $18.9 million facility is situated on 32-acre site.

 

Carmel voters raise property taxes to increase school funding by $2 million.

 

Carmel Junior High School expansion doubles existing facility.

1986

The seventy-six -acre area at northwest corner of Meridian Street and I-465 annexed for development by R.V. Welch.

 

R.V. Welch develops the 188-acre Meridian Technology Center at 116th and Pennsylvania Streets.  The $66.4 million technology park has thirty acres set aside for lake and landscaping.

 

Carmel Library expansion dedicated.

 

Construction of Civic Square begins.  The $5 million Phase I includes fire headquarters and amphitheater.  Dedicated August 1987.

1987

Census shows 23,573 residents of Carmel.  Population is 97.5 percent white, with a median age in the mid-30s.

 

Duke Associates purchase eighty-five acres along 96th Street between Pennsylvania Street and College Avenue for a proposed $100 million project to be developed over five to seven years.

1988

Phase II of Carmel Civic Square in design stage.  The $8 million project will include a city hall, police headquarters, and a commons.

1989

Construction begins on $9 million Arbor Psychiatric Hospital at 11075 North Pennsylvania Street.  Now Charter Hospital.

1990

U.S. Census reports City of Carmel has population of 25,380.  Clay Township population is 43,007, an increase of 31.9 percent over 1980.

 

Phase II of Civic Square project completed.  City moves offices.

 

Task force established to study the consolidation of Carmel city and Clay Township governments.

1992

Hamilton County acquires land at 126th Street and River Road to create River Road Park along the west bank of the White River.  The park is to feature water recreation activities.

 

Integrated Information Systems moves headquarters to Carmel.

 

Last farm within Carmel city limits ceases production.

1994

Thomson Consumer Electronics, parent company of RCA, breaks ground for its North American headquarters at 10330 North Meridian Street.

1995

Long-time Indianapolis-based insurance publisher Rough Notes Co., Inc. moves to Carmel.

 


 
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