Indiana: The Hoosier State
Nestled in the heart of the Midwest, Indiana, the "Hoosier State," exudes a warm and welcoming charm that reflects its rich history and cultural heritage. With a blend of urban centers, picturesque landscapes, and a deep love for sports and tradition, cities in Indiana offer a captivating experience for residents and visitors alike. From the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway, home to the renowned Indianapolis 500, to the tranquil beauty of the Indiana Dunes National Park, the state's geography showcases a diverse range of attractions. As the state that was home to Abraham Lincoln from the ages of 7 to 21, he was one of America's most revered presidents and spoke about his time in Indiana fondly. Beyond its storied past, Indiana's thriving industries, including manufacturing and agriculture, continue to shape its dynamic economy.
Indiana: Some Quick Facts
Indiana is often referred to as the "Hoosier State," though the origin of the term "Hoosier" remains somewhat uncertain. Some have speculated that it originates from the South in the 19th century for woodsmen or rough hill people. Today, it is still used proudly to describe residents of Indiana. Indiana became the 19th state to join the United States on December 11, 1816. Indiana is the 38th largest state by land area with a total of 36,420 square miles and is 1.63% water. The capital city of Indiana is Indianapolis, which is also the largest city in the state with a population of 869,387. Indiana is known for its historic covered bridges, with the Parke County region boasting the largest concentration of these charming structures in the United States. The first professional baseball game was played in Indiana on May 4, 1871. The creator of Garfield, Jim Davis, was born in Marion, Indiana. The Jackson 5, including Michael Jackson, were all born in Gary, Indiana. Other famous people born in Indiana include David Letterman, Mike Epps, James Dean, Larry Bird and Florence Henderson.
Indiana: A Brief History
Native Americans were the first to inhabit the land that is now Indiana as early as 8000 BC. These tribes included the Shawnee, Potawatomi, Miami and Delaware. In the 17th and 18th centuries, French explorers, fur traders and missionaries ventured into the Indiana territory, followed by the British during the French and Indian War. The area became part of the vast territory known as the Northwest Territory after the American Revolution. The early 19th century saw a surge in settlement as pioneers and immigrants from various backgrounds flocked to the state, attracted by fertile farmland and economic opportunities. In the mid-19th century, Indiana's transportation infrastructure expanded significantly with the construction of canals and railroads. The Wabash and Erie Canal, connecting Lake Erie to the Ohio River, facilitated trade and commerce within the state. Indiana played a significant role in the Underground Railroad, a network of secret routes and safe houses used by enslaved African Americans to escape to freedom. The state's location and the presence of abolitionist communities made it an essential link in the network. During the Civil War, Indiana was a loyal Union state. The state provided troops and resources to support the Union cause. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Indiana's economy shifted toward industrialization, with manufacturing becoming a dominant sector. Indiana experienced significant social and political changes during the 20th century. The state saw the rise of organized labor movements and the influence of the Progressive Era. It also faced challenges related to urbanization, environmental issues, and civil rights struggles.
The Geography of Indiana
The geography of Indiana is characterized by a diverse mix of landscapes, ranging from flat plains and rolling hills to rivers and lakes. Indiana is bordered by Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky and Ohio. The northern part of Indiana borders Lake Michigan, one of the Great Lakes. Indiana Dunes National Park is a prominent natural attraction in this region, offering visitors the opportunity to explore sand dunes and diverse ecosystems. The central part of Indiana (the "Corn Belt") is characterized by flat plains and fertile farmland. This agricultural heartland is a significant producer of corn, soybeans and other crops. The western part of Indiana is part of the Wabash Valley, named after the Wabash River that flows through the region. The southern part of Indiana is more hilly and rugged, with the southernmost region being part of the scenic Appalachian Plateau. Brown County, known as the "Little Smokies," features picturesque hills and forests, making it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts. Indiana is also home to several state parks and nature reserves that showcase the state's natural beauty and diverse ecosystems. Hoosier National Forest, located in the southern part of the state, offers hiking, camping, and wildlife viewing opportunities.
Indiana: A Relocation Guide
The state of Indiana is the smallest state west of the Appalachian Mountains in the continental United States. With the largest state capital population east of the Mississippi River in Indianapolis, Indiana boasts a large and rich center. While there are a number of small towns and industrial cities in Indiana, it is also home to a number of metropolitan areas which have a population greater than 100,000. Indiana is home to the largest single-day sporting event in the world with the Indianapolis 500, in addition to the NBA's Indiana Pacers and the NFL's Indianapolis Colts.
Indiana has a humid continental climate, which is marked by variable weather patterns. In particular, Indiana is very susceptible to tornadoes. Rainfall totals are steady throughout the year within the state. Indiana is home to a number of public transportation systems, from a vast rail system to updated county road system and major US and state highways.
Crime rates in Indiana are lower than the national average. Many smaller cities in Indiana are very safe, while larger cities like Indianapolis do have higher than average crime rates. The good news is that the cost of living in Indiana is very affordable; more than 10% less than the national average. With rich culture and affordable housing, Indiana might be a great choice for any family looking to relocate.