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Indiana Economic Development – Free Books and Articles

Indiana Economic Development - Free Books and Articles

Free books and articles about Indiana economic development throughout the state’s history. Includes immigration, trading, transportation …

The economy of Indiana has seen a long, varied history of development and growth. From its earliest days featuring the construction of canals, and plank roads on Indian trails, the state’s economy has seen many changes. As railroad networks developed in Indiana, it led to increased trade along the Ohio River and development of new industries like glass and mining.

Foreign-born Laborers in Indiana

Adams, Donald Griffith
Indiana University 1911

Typewritten thesis in Economics.

See the Menu at the top of every page for Directories of Free Online Fiction and NonFiction Books, Magazines, and more, on 400 pages like this at Century Past

The Wabash Trade Route in the Development of the Old Northwest

Benton, Elbert Jay
Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press (1903)

The author was a Fellow in History in the Johns Hopkins University. His goal was to contribute to the understanding of how waterways contributed to the history of the Old Northwest through an intensive study of this particular waterway. Chapter headings are:

– Early History of the Wabash Trade Route
– The Wabash and Erie Canal
— Origin and Federal Character
— Organization and Construction as an Interstate Enterprise
— As the Trunk Line of a General System of Internal Improvements
— Mismanagement and Collapse in the Panic of 1837
— The Butler Bill: Repudiation or Resumption
— The Administration of the Trust
– Influence on the Development of the Old Northwest

The National Road in Indiana

Burns, Lee
Indianapolis: C.E. Pauley 1919

This 40-page paper starts with an introductory history of the National Road from Cumberland, MD through Ohio. This is followed with a more detailed narrative of construction of the road across Indiana.

Martzolff, Clement L., “Zane’s Trace” in Ohio Economic History
Hulbert, Archer B., The Old National Road: a Chapter of American Expansion in Economic History in the Great Lakes Region

“Internal Improvements in Indiana: No. II—The National Road”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 3, Issue 2, 1907, pp 58-73

Chambers, Smiley N.
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University

Indiana History, Cumberland road

“Letters From Eighteenth Century Indiana Merchants”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 5, Issue 4, 1909, pp 137-159

Coleman, Christopher B.
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University

“History of Canals in Indiana”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 7, Issue 1, 1911, pp 1-15

Comstock, Howard Payne
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University

“Early Commerce in Indiana”

Indiana Magazine of History Vol 4, Issue 1 (March 1908) pp 1-7

Cottman, George S.
Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society

This short article is about the importation of consumer goods to pioneer Indiana towns, including items for sale, transportation challenges, costs, and barter practices.

“Internal Improvements in Indiana: No. IV—Railroads”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 3, Issue 4, 1907, pp 149-181

Cottman, George S.
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University

“The Internal Improvement System of Indiana”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 3, Issue 3, 1907, pp 117-124

Cottman, George S.
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University

Also see: Harcourt, Leveson Francis V., A Treatise on Rivers and Canals relating to the Control and Improvement of Rivers and the Design, Construction, and Development of Canals (1882) in Civil Engineering

Free Business Magazines, & Economy, News, Sports

“Pioneer Transportation on the Ohio River”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 4, Issue 3, 1908, pp 129-133

Covington, Samuel T.
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University

For works on boats and shipping, see: Navigation on the Great Lakes & the Region’s Rivers

See our books on What is Business Administration PDF

The Village at the End of the Road, a Chapter in Early Indiana Railroad History

Daniels, Wylie J.
Indianapolis. Indiana Historical Society 1938

The subject of this book is the great dissatisfaction in Indiana in early days with the condition of the roads, and the many issues surrounding funding, planning and construction of early railroads. The author’s approach to helping us see how people of that place and time viewed the issues was to enrich his narrative with numerous long quotes from local newspapers.

Challenge and Response: A Modern History of the Standard Oil Company (Indiana)

Dedmon, Emmett
Mobium 1984

The first history of the Standard Oil Company (Indiana) since the 1955 history by Paul Giddens [also on this web page]. Standard’s story of the last thirty years is told for the first time.” Books cover.

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State Banking in Indiana

Dehority, George Hupp
Bloomington: Indiana University 1914

Typewritten thesis in the Department of Economics at IU.

Valley of the Upper Wabash, Indiana, with hints on its agricultural advantages; plan of a dwelling, estimates of cultivation, and notices of labor-saving machines

Ellsworth, Henry William
NY. Pratt, Robinson 1838

Henry William Ellsworth was a grandson of Oliver Ellsworth, chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, who had purchased 41,000 acres in the Connecticut Western Reserve, including the later site of Cleveland. His father was a mayor of Hartford, Connecticut and then the first Commissioner of the U.S. Patent Office. Henry was a Yale graduate and then a lawyer in Lafayette, IN. He was later appointed Minister to Sweden and Norway.

This book was written during Ellsworth’s Lafayette years, and encourages investment in large-scale farms in the Wabash River Valley. It is filled with information gained from Ellsworth’s own experience and from information gleaned from other farmers about the costs, methods and potential profits of raising a variety of crops and livestock. He also promotes several types of state-of-the-art agricultural equipment.

Internal Improvements in Early Indiana

Esarey, Logan
Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society 1913

Section and Chapter Headings:

I Introduction
1. Economic Situation in the United States, 1816-20 2. Conditions of Travel in Early Indiana

II. Early Attempts To Build Transportation Routes 1816-’27
1. State Roads and the Three Per Cent Fund 2. The National Road 3. The Michigan Road 4. Opening Streams for Navigation 5. The Ohio Falls Canal 6. Commerce of Early Indiana 7. Early Parties and Government Aid

III. Era of Systematic Internal Improvements 1827-40
1. The Problem, the People, and the Legislature 2. ‘The System’ of 1836 3. Construction 4. Financial Management

IV. Failure of the System
1. The Settlement with the Creditors 2. Finishing the Wabash and Erie Canal

V. Conclusion

Read online free at Century Past

State Banking in Indiana, 1814-1873

Esarey, Logan
Bloomington, IN: 1912

Chapter headings are:

– The First State Bank of Indiana – Popular Ideas of Banking in 1834 – The Second State Bank of Indiana – Chartering the Bank in 1834 – Organizing the Bank – The Panic of 1837 – Attitude of the Constitutional Convention of 1850 – The Free Banks of 1852 – Bank of the State of Indiana — The Third State Bank

“Hoosier Cattle Kings”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 44, Issue 1, March 1948, pp 1-24

Gates, Paul W.
Bloomington: Indiana University

Indianapolis First

Geib, George W.
Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce 1990

A Commemorative History of the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce and Local Business Community. A This local business history is heavily illustrated with historic photos.

Standard Oil Company (Indiana): Oil Pioneer of the Middle West

Giddens, Paul H.
NY: Appleton-Century-Crofts 1955

“The full story of one of America’s great industrial enterprises is told in this completely documented history. This is the story of the Standard Oil Company (Indiana), the largest marketer of petroleum products in the Middle West. The stormy, but inspiring story of an organization which began as a branch of the Standard Oil combination and grew to be the fourth largest industrial corporation in the United States….” – Publisher

“The Gas Boom in East Central Indiana”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 96, Issue 4, December 2000, pp 313-335

Glass, James A.
Bloomington: Indiana University

Public Ports for Indiana: A History of the Indiana Port Commission

Gray, Ralph D.
Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Bureau 1998

“Traces the history of efforts in Indiana to establish its three major public ports, the first on Lake Michigan and two later on the Ohio River. The establishment of the Indiana Port Commission by the Indiana General Assembly in 1961 brought about the accomplishment of three world-class ports that connect Indiana to global trade and provide extensive economic benefits to the state and its citizens.” – Publisher

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Indiana’s Canal Heritage

Harlow, Alvin F.
Fort Wayne, IN: Fort Wayne Public Library 1926

In Indiana’s early decades its pioneers could see the state’s tremendous potential for agricultural production, but the obstacle to realizing that potential was the impossibility of transporting that product to eastern markets. The tremendous success of the Erie Canal, opening in the 1820s, seemed to show the solution for the transportation problem, and there followed a canal craze throughout the new Great Lakes states. This small book recounts the financial and political dramas that convulsed early Indiana during the canal-building era.

For works on boats and shipping, see: Navigation on the Great Lakes & the Region’s Rivers

See our Clothing and Textile Books PDF

Indiana at the World’s Columbian Exposition

Havens, B. F.
Chicago: Rand, McNally 1893

This report from the Board of World’s Fair Managers of Indiana lists all Indiana’s exhibits of every type, and the individual or company providing the exhibit.

Food for Thought: An Indiana Harvest

Hoppe, David
Indiana Humanities 2012

“Tells the story of Indiana’s food renaissance through the voices of more than 80 people who are creating this fresh and dynamic scene. Each of these substantive, first person stories is enhanced by original color photography, creating a vivid composite view of this extraordinary moment in Indiana history.” – Publisher

Automotive history ebooks

“Canal Mania in Indiana”

The Indiana Historian June 1997

Indiana Historical Bureau
Indiana Historical Bureau

A 16-page article on the history of canals throughout the 19th century, focusing on the economic effects of canals and the experience of canal travel. Also see the related article “Canal Construction in Indiana” on this webpage. Contains a bibliography.

“Canal Construction in Indiana”

The Indiana Historian September 1997

Indiana Historical Bureau
Indiana Historical Bureau

16-page article covering the various steps in constructing canals; including surveying, engineering, and construction. The Whitewater canal is used as an example for engineering and construction. A bibliography is included. Also see the related article “Canal Mania in Indiana”, on this webpage.

“Little Bottle – Big Business”

The Indiana Historian September 1995

Indiana Historical Bureau
Indiana Historical Bureau

16-page article about the Indiana glass and glass jar industry, and especially the history of the Coca-Cola bottle. Also a bibliography.

See our post on Magazines for Farmers 1850s-1900s

“A Marvel of Ingenuity”

The Indiana Historian December 1996

Indiana Historical Bureau
Indiana Historical Bureau

16-page overview of the rapid growth of bicycling in Indiana in the 1890s, including the sport and its economic impact. Photos of several types of bicycles of the period. Also a bibliography.

Indiana: Crossroads of Industry and Innovation

Kaelble, Steve
Cherbo 2000

“Hoosier inventors and businesspeople not only brought the world much of yesterday’s and todays automotive technology, but also new treatments for diabetes, depression, indigestion, and tooth decay. Indiana inventors dreamed up overhead garage doors, gas pumps, soft-serve ice-cream machines, and the electrostatic painting technique. Hoosiers have been leaders in improving television, video recording, and direct-broadcast satellite service, and have built the country’s strongest and most productive steel industry. “Indiana: Crossroads of Industry and Innovation” follows the progress of the Hoosier State, from the first horseless carriage ride to the launch of Internet2, the successor to today’s Internet. It revisits the early days of what was an Indiana- dominated auto industry, celebrates a manufacturing economy that is one of the nation’s strongest, and gazes into an Indiana-centered future of communications technology.” – Publisher

We have hundreds of top biographies free

Solon Robinson, Pioneer and Agriculturist; Selected Writings

– Volume 2

Kellar, Herbert A., ed.
Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Bureau 1936

Solon Robinson (1803-1880) was a native of Connecticut who arrived in Indiana in 1830 and settled in Lake County in 1834. He was a prominent early settler there and a founder of the county seat of Crown Point. In his early years there he was a postmaster, ran a general store, and bought a small printing press with which he produced handbills and newssheets that he wrote himself. He also wrote for newspapers, including a serialized short novel, and an emigrant guide entitled The Prairie Farmer. He was a popular orator on a variety of topics, and was a strong advocate for farmers’ organizations, for education, and for scientific farming practices.

These two volumes are collections of his agricultural writings, in a broad sense, from 1825 to 1851. Mostly they seem to be letters and articles published by numerous periodicals. Vol 1. covers 1825-1845, and Vol 2 covers 1846-51.

A Medical History of the State of Indiana

Kemper, G. W. H.
Chicago: American Medical Association 1911

The author was a physician and long-time member of the State Medical Society. This history originally appeared as several articles published in the Journal of the Indiana State Medical Association, so it is assumed that medical professionals were the intended audience. The book is both a history of medical progress and a memorial to many of the individual physicians who rendered service.

Also see:
– Dittrick, Howard, “The Equipment, Instruments and Drugs of Pioneer Physicians of Ohio” in Ohio Economic History
Juettner, Otto, Daniel Drake and his Followers: Historical and Biographical Sketches, 1785-1909 in Biographies & Memoirs in Ohio History;
Zeuch, Lucius H., M.D., compiled, History of Medical Practice in Illinois in Illinois Economic History;
Michigan State Medical Society, Medical History of Michigan (Volume 1) in Michigan Economic History
Frank, Louis Frederick (Dr.), The Medical History of Milwaukee: 1834-1914 in Wisconsin Economic History

History of Medicine, Indiana medical history

See our Carpentry Books PDF Free Download

“The Old Indian Traders of Indiana”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 2, Issue 1, March 1906, pp 1-13

Lasselle, Charles B.
Bloomington: Indiana University

This account of early Indiana traders was written in about 1860 by Lasselle, of Logansport, IN.

The Soft Coal Industry in Indiana

Maartz, Fred Moses
Bloomington: Indiana University 1908

Typewritten thesis for B.S. in Economics and Social Science.

“A Hoosier General Store in 1847”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 35, Issue 3, September 1939, pp 299-302

McFadden, I. M.
Bloomington: Indiana University

Description of the activities of a merchant in Bedford in the 1840s, who supplied manufactured goods to the community, acted as purchasing agent for the products of local farms, and carried out banking functions.

Fort Wayne Aviation : Baer Field and Beyond

Myers, Roger, et al.
Charleston, SC: Arcadia 2011

Volume in the publisher’s “Images of Aviation” series. A history of Indiana told through historic photos, with explanatory captions.

Hours, Earnings, and Conditions of Labor of Women in Indiana Mercantile Establishments and Garment Factories

Obenauer, Marie Louise and others
Washington: U.S. Dept of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics 1914

A Brief Practical Treatise on the Construction and Management of Plank Roads

Owen, Robert Dale
New Albany, IN: Kent & Norman 1850

Robert Dale Owen was the son of the founder of the ‘utopian’ community of New Harmony, IN, and served in the U.S. House of Representatives twice. He explained in the Preface that he had been elected one of the Directors of a company formed to build a 15-mile road from New Harmony to the Ohio River. However, the Directors found that they knew nothing of road-building, so Owen drew upon his circle of acquaintances in Washington, D.C. to research the subject. Since he saw a great need in Indiana for better roads, he put his newly-acquired expertise in this book to persuade other communities of the advantages of plank roads, and so it could serve as a practical guide for funding and building them.

“The New Albany-Salem Railroad—Incidents of Road and Men”

Indiana Magazine of History Volume 15, Issue 4, 1919, pp 342-362

Perring, Thomas Carter
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University

Advocacy and Action: 100 Years of Indiana Nursing and the Indiana State Nurses Association

Porter, Marjorie Lentz, and Wall, Barbra Mann, eds.
Donning 2003

Chapters: History of nursing in Indiana, 1860-1900 — Forming a state association in Indiana, 1900-1920 — Inheritors of a great tradition: the interwar years, 1920-1940 — Service to country and the profession: World War II and professional growth, 1940-1960 — The times they are a-changin: 1960-1980 — It’s time to move on, 1980-2002

Reading The Road: U.S. 40 and the American Landscape

Schlereth, Thomas J.
Knoxville: University of Tennessee 1997

“Once known as the National Highway, U.S. 40 has long been a major east-west route across America. In this fascinating and profusely illustrated book, Thomas J. Schlereth explores the historic landscapes and cultural legacies that are evident alongside the 156 miles of the highway that bisect central Indiana.”

Corn Country: Celebrating Indiana’s Favorite Crop

Stall, Sam
IN: Guild Press-Emmis 2003

“As far as the eye can see, as fragrant as summer, visions of cornfields wrap around our senses like a silky husk on a fresh ear of golden kernels. Corn is big business, harvested on half of Indiana’s 12 million agricultural acres. In Corn Country, author Sam Stall and photographer Darryl Jones delight readers with their verbal and visual chronicle of Indiana’s love affair with its favorite crop.” – Publisher

Indiana and Foreign Trade

U.S. Department of State
Washington: U.S. Department of State 1951

A detailed statistical report.

Early Indiana Trails and Surveys

Wilson, George R.
Indianapolis: C.E. Pauley 1919

This book was written by an ex-surveyor and historian of Dubois County. He identifies numerous Indian trails, locates them with precision, and provides some interesting historical background information for many of them.

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