Indiana, one of the United States of America, the nineteenth in point of admission, lies between 37° 47′ and 41° 50′ N. lat., and between 84° 49′ and 88° 2′ W. long. Its length is 267 miles, north and south, and its average width, east and west, 140 miles. Its area is 35,885 square miles, or 22,966,400 acres. On the north it is bounded by the State of Michigan and Lake Michigan, on the east by the State of Ohio, on the South by the Ohio River, and on the West by the Wabash River and the State of Illinois. It is subdivided into ninety-two counties. Indianapolis is now the capital, situated in the geographical center of the State. The State has only three lake ports, Michigan City, Indiana Harbor, and Gary.
PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS.—There are no mountains in the State; the area is generally level or undulating, but with continuous drainage slopes of considerable extent. The most rugged or broken portion of the State borders the Ohio and extends north from twenty to fifty miles, interspersed by fertile valleys and table lands. There is more or less broken land adjacent to the larger streams, but back of these the country undulates and becomes level with easy drainage. More than eighty per cent of the State was originally dense forest, interspersed with open stretches. In the northwest portion of the State the great prairie begins that stretches across Illinois. Approximately ninety per cent of the original forest has been cleared and the land brought to a high state of cultivation. The Wabash and Ohio are the only navigable rivers, the former having once been navigable for light-draught steamboats as far north as Lafayette. But navigation to any extent has receded to a point below Terre Haute. All streams originally abounded in fish, but the supply has greatly diminished in recent years; strict fishery laws are now in force to encourage an increase.
POPULATION.—This, like the other central States north of the Ohio, is composed of a population of mixed origin (2,775,000 in 1908). Its first white settlers were the French from Canada, of whom some traces still exist, mainly near Vincennes, at Terre Haute, and around South Bend. The next in order of time were pioneers from Kentucky and southern Ohio, who first settled the southern counties. With later material progress in the nineteenth century, New York and New England blood contributed to the population of the northern part of the State, with generous infusions from the mixed races of Pennsylvania and Maryland. The digging of the Wabash and Erie Canal attracted large numbers of Irish and German immigrants, who worked upon the project. With the railroad and agricultural development in the middle of the century came further infusions of Irish, German, New England, and Eastern blood—the two latter classes being the descendants of ancestors who had crossed the Atlantic from Great Britain in the century or more preceding the Revolution, but thoroughly Americanized under the conditions of their new habitat. Foreign immigration in the past thirty years has not added largely to the population, but has proceeded farther west, leaving, however, as it crossed the State, some English, Swedes, Germans, and Swiss.
RESOURCES.—Although Indiana stands thirty-fifth in area among the states, in agricultural resources the State stands fifth in the production of wheat, and sixth in that of corn and oats. In 1908 the State produced 32,746,145 bushels of wheat from 2,059,339 acres; 31,368,570 bushels of oats from 1,528,502 acres; 120,447,582 bushels of corn from 3,884,980 acres; 4,143,084 bushels of potatoes from 66,884 acres; 1,835,-244 tons of hay from 1,317,455 acres; besides important items of tomatoes, clover, tobacco, peas, onions, clover seed, butter, cheese, poultry, eggs, and apples. The State is also a liberal producer of horses, cattle, hogs, and sheep. The assessed valuation of its farms is $660,172,175. In 1908 the population was 2,775,000; its total taxables in 1907 being $1,767,815,487. Of gravel and macadamized roads there were in the same year 18,252 miles; of steam railroads, 7,142, and 1,763 miles of electric inter-urban roads. Ohio and Switzerland are the only counties without railroads. The manufacturing interests of the State are considerable; in 1905 there were 7,912 factories representing an investment of $311,526,000, with 154,174 wage-earners. The value of their product was $394,165,838, and the wages paid were $72,178,259. The bituminous coal output in 1907 was 13,250,715 tons; from its oil wells were produced 5,103,297 barrels of oil valued at $4,489,213; of oolitic limestone the product value was $3,673,965.
EDUCATION—According to latest estimates the total value of school property (public and religious) is $33,792,339; number of teachers, 16,571; of pupils enrolled, 531,731. The public school fund of the State (including university fund) is $11,818,433. The State university is located at Bloomington, established according to the declaration of the first State constitution, and was opened in 1824. President Hall, a Princeton graduate, constituted at that time the whole faculty. It has many large buildings, a faculty numbering seventy-two, and about 1800 students, of whom over one-third are young ladies. Purdue University at Lafayette owes its name to John Purdue, a wealthy bachelor of that city, who endowed it as an agricultural college. It was founded by State legislative enactment in 1874 as Indiana’s land-grant college, under the congressional act of 1862, when 13,000,000 acres of government land were set aside for establishing industrial colleges to advance agriculture and the mechanical arts. It is one of sixty-five similar institutions founded in the United States. It has over 2100 students, 237 professors, some twenty-five substantial buildings, and a large U.S. experimental station. The campus and experimental farm cover 180 acres. Although supported by legislative appropriations it is over-taxed for room and facilities. Coeducation prevails at Purdue and the State university, and in other State educational institutions. It is estimated that in 1907 Purdue gave instruction to more than 100,000 people by its regular course, its short course in agriculture, its farmers’ institutes, and by its corn and fruit excursion trains with its professors and instructors accompanying the trains.
The public free school system of the State is now developed to a degree commensurate with the needs of the population. This development had its impetus from the spirit which dictated the constitution of 1852. Previous to that period, free public education was scattered and meager. A system of consolidating poorly attended schools into one central school of greater efficiency and the free transportation of pupils (made possible by the law of 1907) are doing much in rural districts to lift education to a higher plane. Local township taxation has been liberal in advancing this system. No small factor in raising the level of rural intelligence, moreover, has been the extensive spread of the system of rural free mail delivery, providing a daily mail, with daily newspapers and periodicals. The State is also well supplied with rural telephone systems and good roads.
Institutions worthy of mention are Wabash College at Crawfordsville, a Presbyterian school with 231 students; Earlham College, near Richmond, with 413 students, founded by the Society of Friends; Franklin College at Franklin, a Baptist institution; De Pauw University at Greencastle, under Methodist influence, with 924 students; Taylor University at Upland; Butler University (near Indianapolis), founded by the Church of the Disciples, 256 students; Rose Polytechnic at Terre Haute, where also is the State normal school; Hanover College, founded in 1827 by Presbyterians, near Madison, with 138 students; Chautauqua classes at Winona Lake, and its technical institution at Indianapolis; Culver Military School at Lake Maxinkuckee (the largest of its kind in the U.S.); the normal school at Valparaiso, with 4000 students, the Indiana Kindergarten Training School at Indianapolis; manual training and domestic instruction have been instituted by about seventy-five towns; there are also State schools for blind, deaf and dumb, feeble-minded, and soldiers’ orphans, where industrial training is also carried on.
History records that the first known regular school in the State was that of the Catholic priest Rivet at Vincennes (1793). Three years later there is an account of a little school in Dearborn County. As settlers came into the southeastern counties children were taught in their homes. Owing to dangers from Indians and wild beasts, the teacher went to the homes, spending one-third of the day there. Thus with six families a teacher gave three lessons each week to all the children. Later, as danger of going through the forest decreased, the children congregated at the home of a centrally located family, where a lean-to was built for their use against the pioneer’s cabin. When possible a log house near some living spring would be built and a teacher hired for three or more months, and “boarded around” with the patrons. It is a matter of history that some of the early log school houses in Washington County were constructed with loopholes for shooting at Indians. Barns and mills were often utilized. At Vevay (a Swiss settlement) the first school taught in English was in a horse mill.
In many southern counties after the Indian wars, blockhouses were turned into schools. The interiors were of the crudest character. Adventurers from England, Scotland and Ireland, or the East, were generally the teachers in these primitive days. Many of them, to increase their earnings, chopped wood after school and on Saturdays. In these days there were no regular school books. Any accessible book—the Bible, Gulliver’s Travels, or Pilgrim’s Progress—was used to teach pupils to read. Ink and paper were almost as scarce. But as time went on, with the advance of civilization, these primitive conditions, so common to all the States west of the Alleghenies at some time in their history, were replaced by larger facilities, with better teachers and a fuller supply of books. But this may be taken as a true picture of pioneer days previous to (if not for a decade after) the adoption of the constitution in 1816. Struggles against the forces of nature, the sparseness and poverty of the population, made education in a general way a secondary matter. It was out of this condition that was evolved the theory and the system of free schooling in the rudiments at public expense.
HISTORY.—Indiana was originally part of the French possessions extending to the Gulf of Mexico. It was first visited in the latter part of the seventeenth century by hunters and Indian traders from Canada, and government posts were extended in the early years of the eighteenth century down the Wabash as far as Vincennes. Indian and French interests never clashed, but their settlements were of little historical moment. The Miami confederacy of Indians, whose villages were scattered through the central and northern parts of the State, included the Weas, Foxes, Piankishaws, Pottawottomies, Shawanos, Ouiatenons, and Kickapoos. In 1763 the territory embraced by the State was ceded to England. At the time of the cession to Great Britain of the northwest territory it is estimated that north of the Ohio it contained about 1200 adults, 800 children and 900 negro slaves. Many retired to French posts like St. Louis. That portion of this domain, now known as Indiana, remained British territory less than twenty years. By the treaty of 1783 it was ceded to the United States, after the English had been surprised and driven from Fort Vincennes by the heroic exploits of General George Rogers Clark. The post of Kaskaskia on the Mississippi was the first object of acquisition in Clark’s assault upon the northwest territory.
It was at this old town that Clark first met Father Pierre Gibault, to whom (as Judge Law states in his history of Vincennes), next to Vigo and Clark himself, the United States is more indebted for the accession of this great domain than to any other man. He was a native of Montreal, where he was born in 1737. He had been ten years pastor at Kaskaskia, much beloved and of great influence. Having been formerly at Vincennes, he was well known there. He had little sympathy with his new masters, the English. Clark’s humane and liberal treatment soon won the hearts of the Canadians and the influence of Father Gibault, their recognized leader. It resulted in an offer from the good priest to win over the allegiance of his compatriots at Vincennes. This he undertook at once in face of the difficulties of wilderness travel and Indian dangers, and readily accomplished it after a two days’ sojourn there. The American flag was hoisted over the fort, after all who remained had taken the oath of allegiance. Vincennes, so easily captured and at once garrisoned and officered by Clark, was soon afterwards (December, 1778) retaken by a large force of English under Colonel Hamilton, dubbed by Clark as the “hair buyer” general, because of his being accused of offering rewards to the Indians for American scalps, and of his efforts to harry the frontier by Indian raids. It was in the second and final capture of Vincennes from Hamilton that Clark and his pioneers proved their prowess and earned the gratitude of their country against almost superhuman difficulties.
It was again at this juncture that the influence and services of Father Gibault, supplemented by those of the Sardinian merchant Francis Vigo, were so essential to Clark’s heroic enterprise. Patrick Henry (then Governor of Virginia) refers to him as “the priest to whom this country owes many thanks for his zeal and services”; but probably the highest compliment paid to Father Gibault’s loyalty and services is contained in Colonel Hamilton’s wrathful denunciation of his influence. Indian attacks continued to make the State an unsafe place of residence, but the campaign of General Wilkinson in 1791 and later of General Wayne discomfited and disorganized the savages, and many tribes submitted. In 1800 Ohio was carved off from the northwest territory as a separate State, and the territory west and northwest was designated Indiana Territory. On July 4, William Henry Harrison became its first territorial governor, resident at Vincennes. In 1805 Michigan, and in 1809 Illinois were carved off, thus confining the State to its present boundaries. But settlements continued to increase against Indian and natural obstacles and by 1810 the population, confined mainly to the southern end of the territory, amounted to 24,250. From the day that the British flag was hauled down at Vincennes until a decade after the Indians were scattered by the pioneers of Kentucky and Indiana, fighting back to back at Tippecanoe, the history of the State was one of long and bloody effort upon the part of the settler to win the fertile soil for homestead and plough. Year by year the front line of civilization was pushed farther and farther up the State, its advance marked by block houses and log cabins punctured with portholes.
The record of this period is one of fierce reprisal of white man against red man, and of red man against white man, in which the savage played a steadily losing game. That deep-rooted hatred against the Indian for his aid to the English in the war of the Revolution, nothing could quench in the breast of the pioneer. He was the peer of the Indian in woodcraft and stealth and his master with the rifle. Daily this weapon went with his plough afield as, furrow by furrow, the soil yielded to its new claimant, forever. The threatening attitude for Tecumseh, who was an Indian of unusual ability of organization, determined the governor to proceed against him. On November 6, 1811, Harrison’s army reached Prophetstown on the Wabash, about five miles below the mouth of the Tippecanoe. The next morning, before daylight, in violation of previous agreement, the Indians (Tecumseh being absent), led on by his brother, “The Prophet”, attacked the Americans and a massacre was narrowly averted: but the frontiersmen fought bravely and stubbornly and turned the attack into a victory. Aside from minor skirmishes up to 1815, which marked the close of the war of 1812, the troubles from Indians were spasmodic (caused by wandering bands) for another decade. Yet the battle of Tippecanoe must stand as a decisive one in western history. In answer to a petition for admission to the Union, a bill admitting the State was passed in April, 1816, and on June 29 following the State adopted a constitution. On December 11 the State was formally admitted. It was not without considerable effort on the part of the free-soilers of that day that a clause excluding slavery was adopted.
From this time forward emigration, mostly from the southeast, was so rapid that by 1820 the population was 147,176, and by 1830 the sales of public lands for the previous decade reached 3,588,221 acres and the population was 343,031. It had more than doubled since 1820. Down the Mississippi and its tributaries (the Ohio and Wabash) was to be found the sole outlet for the increasing produce of the Middle West, whose waters drained into the great valley. Districts which were not upon streams navigable by even the lightest draught steamboat were sorely retarded. The small, flat boat was their main reliance. Roads suitable for heavy carriage were few up to the middle of the century. To meet this condition the building of canals (espoused by the constitution of 1816) was long advocated, in emulation of Ohio which took example after New York State. In 1826 Congress granted a strip two and a half miles wide on each side of the proposed canal. A very extensive and ambitious scale of main and lateral canals and turnpikes was advocated in consequence. The expense and time attending shipment of merchandise from the east at this time were almost prohibitive. Yet 100,000 bushels of salt came to the State each year from central New York, because it was a necessity, regardless of price. Work began on the Wabash and Erie Canal in 1832, on the White Water in 1836, on the Central in 1837. But bad financing and “bad times” nearly wrecked the whole scheme; yet the Wabash and Erie Canal was completed from Toledo to Evansville. It was a great factor in the development of the State, although it brought heavy loss upon the bondholders on the advent of the railroad, which competition the canal at that time could not stand.
Before the canal was in operation wheat sold at 37 to 45 cents, and corn at 16 to 20 cents per bushel. Salt brought $10 per barrel, and sugar from 25 to 35 cents per pound. But the canal increased prices of farm products three or four fold and reduced prices of household needs 60%, a tremendous stimulus to agricultural development. By 1840 the population of the upper Wabash Valley had increased from 12,000 to 270,000. The canal boat that hauled loads of grain east came back loaded with immigrants. In 1846 it is estimated that over thirty families settled every day in the State. Manufacturing also developed rapidly. In the ten years between 1840 and 1850 the counties bordering the canal increased in population 397 per cent; those more fertile, but more remote, 190 per cent. The tide of trade, which had been heretofore to New Orleans, was reversed and went east. The canal also facilitated and brought emigration from Ohio, New York, and New England, in the newly established counties in the northern two-thirds area of the State. The foreign immigration was mostly from Ireland and Germany. Later, this great canal fell into disuse, and finally very unwisely was abandoned, as railway mileage increased. In the next ten years, by 1840, of the public domain 9,122,688 acres had been sold. But the State was still heavily in debt, although growing rapidly. In 1851 a new constitution (now in force) was adopted. The first constitution was adopted at a convention assembled at Corydon, which had been the seat of government since December, 1813. The original state house, built of blue limestone, still stands; but in 1821 the site of the present capital (Indianapolis) was selected by the legislature; it was in the wilds, sixty miles from civilization; today it is a city of 225,000 inhabitants and the largest inland steam and electric railroad center without navigation in the United States. Yet no railroad reached it before 1847.
The State sent three regiments to the Mexican war. Lew Wallace (afterwards general in the rebellion and the author of “Ben Hur”) was a second lieutenant. All her regiments were officered by volunteer officers. During the war between the States, Oliver P. Morton (later U.S. senator) was the war governor and lent the full force of his strong character to the demand made upon this State, which furnished to the Civil War 208,000 soldiers. In addition to the sums expended by the State, the counties and townships gave, in bounties, $15,492,876; for the relief of soldiers and their families, $4,566,898; and for other expenses, $198,866. Her total loss from battle and the incidents of war was 24,416. Her troops saw service in every Southern State. There is a National Soldiers’ Home at Marion, established by Congress in 1890, and a State Soldiers’ Home near Lafayette, created by the legislature in 1895. Benjamin Harrison, twenty-third President of the United States, had been a resident of the State since his twenty-first year and was the grandson of her first territorial governor, who was later elected ninth President of the United States. Thomas A. Hendricks, Vice-President of the United States, was elected with Grover Cleveland in 1884; both Harrison and Hendricks were lawyers of national reputation.
RELIGION.—History.—The first religion of Indiana, after its emergence into the daylight of history, was that of the Roman Catholic Church, brought thither by those missionaries of New France who followed the lakes and watercourses leading to the valley of the Wabash. The earliest of these priests was the Jesuit Allouez, whose rude mission-house stood on the St. Joseph River, within the present limits of Indiana, in close neighborhood to the present site of Notre Dame University. The ground on which this mission stood is the earliest recorded land grant in the territory comprising the State’s present limits. It was made in 1686 to the Jesuit Missions on condition of their erecting a house and chapel there within three years. Here the founder of the church in Indiana died in 1689. His place was taken by Father Claude Aveneau, who for many years ministered to the Christian Indians and the flitting coureurs des bois, who passed back and forth over this portage, which transferred their canoes from the waters of the Great Lake basin to those of the Great Valley. The mission was suspended by trouble with the Miamis for a few years, but in 1706 was restored under
Father James Grainer. In 1711 he was succeeded by Father Peter F. X. Chardon, but Charlevoix found it deserted in 1721.
Until 1734 Father St. Pe was in charge and his successor was Father Du Jaunay. In 1719 at Fort Ouiatenon on the Wabash below the present Lafayette, then at Fort Miami where Fort Wayne now stands, and finally in 1733 at Poste au Ouabache (later and still known as Vincennes), Jesuit missionaries were established almost continuously down to 1763. On July 22, 1741, at Fort Ouiatenon was born a child, Anthony Foucher, who was destined to be the first native of the State to receive Holy orders. Ouiatenon was the head of navigation for the largest pirogues. Here all peltries destined for Canada were transferred to canoes. This made it an important rendezvous. As many as 20,000 skins a year are said to have been shipped from Ouiatenon in 1720 and the decade following. Yet not a vestige of this post remains—not even a stone upon a stone. From that point of time, until the battle of Tippecanoe (1811) marked the close of serious Indian warfare, there were only visiting priests at Vincennes and Fort Wayne. Confirmation was first administered at Vincennes about 1814 by the Bishop of Bardstown. Communicants were mostly of French origin, remnants of the early days of French sovereignty.
Dioceses.—(a) Diocese of Vincennes. This included the whole State, was established in 1834, and its first bishop was Simon Gabriel Brute. At the time he was named for this diocese he was president of Mount St. Mary’s College, Emmitsburg, to which he had donated his library of 5000 volumes. He died after incredible hardships in 1839, a veritable martyr to his zeal for the faith. There were only two priests besides in the State at the time of his consecration. Celestine de la Hailandiere succeeded him. He attracted the Eudists to establish a theological seminary at Vincennes, drew Father Sorin and the Fathers of the Holy Cross to begin the work now flourishing at Notre Dame, and the Sisters of Providence whose house adjoins Terre Haute. He resigned (1847) and was followed by Bishop Bazin, who died in six months and was followed by Maurice de St. Palais, who had labored many years on the frontier. To him the State owes the first orphan asylum and the Benedictine monks, whose house is at St. Meinrad. Bishop St. Palais died in June, 1877, rich in labors accomplished and much beloved. He had been offered the Archbishopric of Toulouse, but refused. His successor is the present Bishop Francis Silas Chatard, formerly at the head of the American College in Rome, now resident at Indianapolis. His jurisdiction is now known and designated as the Diocese of Indianapolis.
(b) Diocese of Fort Wayne. Erected in 1857, it comprises the northern half of the State. Its first bishop, John Henry Luers, a tireless laborer, was the founder of an association to care for infirm priests, and did much to extend the church under his care. There were only three schools and one college when he came. When he died there were forty schools and a university. His successor (1872) was Joseph Dwenger, founder of the St. Joseph‘s Orphan Home at Lafayette, and one for girls at Fort Wayne, who did much to extend the work of his predecessor in establishing parochial schools. He was also instrumental in the establishment of St. Joseph‘s College, near Rensselaer, by the Community of the Precious Blood. He was followed (1893) by Joseph Rademacher, who was transferred from Nashville, Tennessee, where he was consecrated (1883). This zealous administrator died in 1900, and was succeeded by the present incumbent, Herman Joseph Alerding.
Principal Religious Denominations.—Few states (if any) of the Federal Union present such a variety of religious denominations as the State of Indiana. This is due to the varied racial elements of its population. The accompanying table shows the various forms of religion represented, according to the latest state statistics (1907). Denomination
Adventists Seventh Day
Baptists, Free Colored
Baptists Free White
Baptists Missionary (colored)
Catholics (of Latin Rite)
Catholics of Greek Rite
Church of Christ (Disciples)
Dunkards (German Baptists)
Lutherans, English and German
Lutherans, English and German Indep. * Meeting places
Two notable religio-sociological experiments on a considerable scale were tried in the early history of the State, which attracted widespread interest. In 1815 George Rapp transplanted his Rappist brethren, numbering 800, to a tract of 30,000 acres bordering the Wabash, where they built a substantial town which they called Harmonic; there they formed a socialistic celibate community of people belonging to the German peasant class, originally from Wurtemberg. Their church structure, the most massive and notable one west of the Alleghanies, was in the form of a Greek cross, about 120 feet in length; the roof was supported by eighteen pillars of native walnut, cherry, and sassafras, some of them six feet in circumference. Although eminently successful in material advancement, they sold their domain in 1824 to Robert Owen, a Scotch philanthropist, who was ambitious of exploiting there some of his social theories. He rechristened the town New Harmony, and brought with him or attracted there many men of eminent culture, and it became a veritable Mecca for scholars and travelers during the years of Owen’s proprietorship, and was an enduring influence for many years upon the intellectual development of the State. The experiment came to an end in 1828, with failure marked across its record.
Legislation Directly Affecting Religion.—By statute (enacted in 1881 and now in force) “Clergymen, as to confessions or admissions made to them in the course of the discipline enjoined by their respective churches, shall not be competent witnesses.” By statute (enacted in 1891 and in force) “Every building used and set apart for educational, literary, scientific or charitable purposes, and the tract of land on which such building is situated, not exceeding forty acres; also the personal property, endowment funds and interest thereon, set apart for the purpose”; likewise “Every building used for religious worship, pews and furniture, and parsonage, and the land whereon said buildings are situate, not exceeding ten acres, when owned by a church, also every cemetery, are exempt from taxation.”
Sunday is a dies non; and all contracts or acts, otherwise legal, are void if executed thereon; and all persons are under statutory prohibition from pursuing their usual business avocation, or rioting, hunting, fishing, or quarrelling upon that day. The penalty is a fine of not more than ten dollars. Exceptions are made for those conscientiously observing the Seventh Day, and travelers, tollgate-keepers, and ferrymen. Profanity and blasphemy at any time are also subject to fine. All witnesses must take an oath most consistent with and binding upon the conscience. Those conscientiously opposed to an oath may affirm, under the pains and penalties of perjury. The legislature is by custom opened by prayer. Sunday, New Year’s Day, Christmas, and days recommended by the President of the United States, or the governor, as a day of public fasting or thanksgiving, Lincoln’s birthday, Washington’s birthday, Memorial Day (May 30), Labor Day, and days of any general, state, or national election, shall be legal holidays. If any such day falls on a Sunday, the Monday following shall be the legal holiday. All traffic in intoxicating liquors is prohibited on Sunday, the Fourth of July, New Year’s Day, Christmas, Thanksgiving Day, and upon the day of any election in the township, town, or city where holden; such sale is also prohibited on all days between eleven p. in. and five a. in. There are strict statutes against obscene pictures or literature.
In the constitution of 1851, now in force, the provisions relating to religious freedom in the constitution of 1816 have been substantially reenacted and are worthy of note: “All men shall be secured in their natural right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their own conscience. No law shall in any case whatever control the free exercise and enjoyment of religious opinions or interfere with the right of conscience: no preference shall be given by law to any creed, religious society, or mode of worship; and no man shall be compelled to attend, erect, or support any place of worship, or to maintain any ministry, against his consent. No religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office of trust or profit. No money shall be drawn from the treasury for the benefit of any religious or theological institution” (Art. I,—§47-51).
Marriage and Divorce.—The statutory grounds of divorce are: adultery, impotency (pre-existing), abandonment for two years, cruel treatment, habitual drunkenness, failure to make provision for two years, or conviction of infamous crime. There has been generally considerable liberality upon the part of the courts in granting divorces. In 1907 there were 29,-804 marriages and 3980 divorces. It is estimated that the divorces of residents of the cities are fifty per cent above those from rural communities. The marriage of negroes and whites is prohibited; all parties contracting marriage must procure a licence; solemnizing without a licence is punished by a heavy fine. Recent enactment has yielded to the public sentiment against easy divorce, and greater restrictions have been thrown about the procurement of the marriage licence. But legislation is far short of checking the evil.
Sale of Liquor.—Temperance sentiment has grown stronger in Indiana each year for the past twenty years and has voiced itself in increasingly restrictive legislation. The majority of voters in any township may by petition prevent the sale for two years thereafter of intoxicants. And by the most recent enactment it is provided that, upon petition signed by twenty per cent of the aggregate vote last cast in the county for secretary of state, an election must be ordered to determine whether intoxicants may be sold within the county. A majority of the votes cast at such election shall determine the issue. Since this law was passed (September, 1908) about ninety per cent of the counties of the State have been made “dry” territory. The general sentiment of the community therefore is overwhelmingly opposed to the evils of intemperance, and the influence of the saloon in politics. Even where tolerated there are many statutory penalties, such as for selling to minors, to intoxicated persons, for maintaining “wine rooms” and the other evils incidental to the traffic. The disposition is growing stronger in favor of a drastic enforcement of these statutes.
Matters Affecting Religious Work.—The title to the property of the Roman Catholic Church in this State has of recent years been vested in the bishop of the diocese and his successors in office, in trust. This has been done to avoid the inconvenience of lay trusteeship of church and cemetery property authorized by statute. The statutes relating to wills have not hampered the devising of property for charitable or religious purposes. Married women may (when of age) devise by will their real or personal estate since the statute of 1852. Foreign wills proved according to the law of the country where made are admissible to probate in this State in the manner specially prescribed. Under the constitution (Art. XII) no person conscientiously opposed to bearing arms shall be compelled to do militia duty, but shall pay an equivalent for exemption. By recent statute clergymen are exempt from grand jury service. But, although there is no special statute exempting them from petit jury service, it has been the invariable custom not to draw clergymen for such service. By common law (no statute contravening) they are exempt from jury or military service.
Catholic Schools and Religious Houses.—Notre Dame University, in St. Joseph County, in charge of the Fathers and Brothers of the Holy Cross, is one of the largest Catholic institutions of learning in the United States. It was started in 1844 by Father Sorin, assisted by several brothers. The students in 1907 numbered 833, and the faculty, 69 professors. It has some 600 acres of land; upon this estate, over a mile distant from the university, is situated a large school for young ladies, called St. Mary’s of the Lakes, started in 1855 and directed by the Sisters of the Order of the Holy Cross; the number of students in 1908 was 297. A similar school, called St. Mary’s of the Woods, west of the limits of Terre Haute, dates from 1845, when six Sisters of Providence, from Ruillesur-Loire, came with Mother Theodore at their head; their motherhouse is located here; there were 208 scholars in 1908, and they have several other schools in the State. The Congregation of the Most Precious Blood took charge of the Indian School at Rensselaer, erected by Mother Katharine Drexel, and continued it until the withdrawal of government support in 1896 forced a discontinuance of the work. The college (St. Joseph‘s) started in 1891 is in a flourishing condition, having been enlarged in 1897; the number of students in 1908 was 200. The Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ have a motherhouse at Fort Wayne; they have charge of St. Vincent’s Orphan Asylum and a hospital at Fort Wayne. Since 1887 they have had a sanatorium for consumptives at South Bend, a hospital at Laporte, and numerous schools.
The Sisters of St. Francis of the Perpetual Adoration have a hospital (St. Elizabeth‘s) at Lafayette; the motherhouse adjoins the hospital; they are also in charge of St. Joseph‘s Orphan Asylum (for boys) and St. Anthony’s Home for the Aged, in the same city. They have also founded hospitals at Hammond, Logansport, New Albany, Terre Haute, and Michigan City; and elsewhere are in charge of schools. The Sisters of St. Joseph (founded by the Jesuit Medaille in 1650) have a convent school near Tipton, an academy in Tipton, and schools at Delphi, Elwood, Kokomo, and Logansport. The Sisters of the Most Precious Blood began their labors in Jay County in 1853; they are in charge of the Kneip Sanatorium near Rome City, and several schools. The School Sisters of Notre Dame conduct several schools in the State. The Sisters of St. Agnes have been engaged in similar work since 1872. The St. Francis Sisters of the Sacred Heart have a Home for the Aged Poor at Avilla, and nine schools and two orphan asylums. The Felician Sisters teach the parochial school at Otis. The Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth teach two schools at South Bend. The Sisters of St. Dominic have charge of schools at Earl-park and Mishawaka; the Sisters of St. Francis conduct the Wabash Railroad hospital at Peru.
St. Meinrad’s Benedictine Abbey and College in Spencer County has a stately Gothic church of stone, connecting with large community and college buildings. To the abbey belong 40 priests, 12 clerics, 6 choir novices, 42 lay brothers, and 1 novice. There are 80 ecclesiastical students, and in the college 271 students. St. Joseph‘s Orphan Asylum for boys at Lafayette was founded in 1875, with an endowment of 580 acres bequeathed by Rev. George A. Hamilton and a gift of 51 acres from Owen Ball and James B. Falley. It has ample brick buildings and cares for 133 children. The Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ are in charge of St. Vincent’s Asylum for girls at Fort Wayne, with 106 children. The Franciscan Fathers have at Oldenburg a monastery and their theological study house with 24 clerics and 7 lay brothers. They are also engaged in pastoral work at Indianapolis and Lafayette. The Little Sisters of the Poor have a house at Indianapolis with 136 inmates, and at Evansville with 101 inmates. The Sisters of the Good Shepherd have a house at Indianapolis. The Sisters of Charity have hospitals at Evansville and Indianapolis. The Poor Clares have a monastery at Evansville. The Nuns of the Order of St. Benedict have a convent and academy in the same city. The motherhouse of the Sisters of St. Francis is located at Oldenburg, with an academy of 100 pupils. The Sisters of Mercy have a hospital at Lawrenceburg. The Ursulines have houses in Madison and Evansville; and the Servants of Mary at Mount Vernon. The Catholic population of the Diocese of Indianapolis (formerly Vincennes) in 1900 was 118,200; that of the Diocese of Fort Wayne was 96,405.
Catholics Distinguished in Public Life.—Individual Catholics have not been prominent in the higher offices of public life. Until recent years, predominant religious feeling would have barred such preferment. But to the highest lines of business and positions of trust, their ability and integrity have carried representative Catholics in large numbers. Timothy E. Howard, one of the judges for some time of the Supreme Court of Appeals, and John E. Lamb, for one term a member of Congress from the Terre-Haute district, are both Catholics.
J. WALTER WILSTACH