Learn About Historical Events and Corridor Sites
The locals cherish their diverse past through the Tippecanoe Battlefield and Museum just north of West Lafayette, along the Wabash River. This national historic landmark sits within a 96-acre park setting and features an 85-foot marble obelisk monument marking the 1811 Battle of Tippecanoe between the US Forces and the Native American confederation. The park hosts an annual Indiana Fiddlers’ Gathering in June.
The obelisk monument was erected in 1908 and marks the site of the 1811, Battle of Tippecanoe between the United States’ forces, led by William Henry Harrison and representatives of Tecumseh’s Native American confederation.
Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:
West Lafayette was settled in the late 1820s. The present city was formed in 1888 by merging adjacent suburban towns of Chauncey, Oakwood, and Kingston.
West Lafayette remained a small suburban village until Purdue University opened in 1869. In May 1888, Chauncey’s town voted to change its name to West Lafayette after a petition signed by 52 electors. By that time, the growth of the university was fueling the development of the little town. The address of Purdue University was given as Lafayette, Indiana, until well into the twentieth century. West Lafayette never gained a railroad depot and lagged several years behind Lafayette to establish municipal infrastructure and services. Today West Lafayette has established itself as a different city, with independent services and unique neighborhoods distinct from its sister city.
In 2013 the City of West Lafayette approved an annexation that placed much of the Purdue University academic campus and residence hall system within the municipality’s official boundaries for the first time. This expansion also included a large section of the US Highway 231 corridor previously part of unincorporated Tippecanoe County.
Lafayette was a shipping center on the Wabash River. The Wabash and Erie Canal in the 1840’s stimulated trade and affirmed Lafayette’s regional prominence. Railroads arrived in the town in the 1850s, connecting it with other major markets. The Monon Railroad connected Lafayette with different sections of Indiana.
Lafayette continued to grow, and in 1869, Purdue University was founded. The school has played an essential part in the development of the Lafayette-West Lafayette area. Today, Lafayette has developed as a diversified community with manufacturing, merchandising, education, and transportation contributing their share.
The community has honored and preserved the many historic districts leading to Lafayette’s national award recognition as an “All American Main Street” city.
Downtown Battle Ground
Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_Ground,_Indiana
Listed on the national and local register of historic places, Ninth Street Hill boasts over 80 architecturally significant houses, some dating back to the mid-19th century.
Image Source: https://www.planning.org/greatplaces/
Historic map of Lafayette, Indiana from 1868
Image Source: https://www.homeofpurdue.com/plan/our-community/area-history/
Annual Feast of the Hunters Moon in October at Historic Fort Ouiatenon Park near West Lafayette, Indiana
Image Source: https://www.crazycrow.com/site/photo-galleries/rendezvous-and-historic-reenactment-events-galleries/feast-of-the-hunters-moon-gallery/
Early days of Purdue University’s campus
Image Source: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/power-epiphany-how-purdue-went-paperless-eric-kavanagh/
Loeb Fountain as it originally appeared outside of Hovde Hall
Image Source: https://www.purdue.edu/newsroom/purduetoday/didyouknow/