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History of Earl Park, Indiana

Earl Park is a town located in Richland township, Benton County Indiana. Founded in 1872, the community was named for Adams Earl, landowner and developer. Current population approximately 500. Elevation 798 ft.

 

Adams Earl circa 1872 Adams Earl Biography

The 1972 Earl Park Centennial Celebration was the first annual fall festival.

The Earl Park Fall festival Labor day weekend

Adams Earl and Moses Fowler were prominent Lafayette businessmen and land developers. Earl Park's neighbor, Fowler Indiana is named after Moses Fowler. The Tippecanoe County Historical Museum at 909 South Street in Lafayette is the original Fowler mansion. The Adams Earl mansion was destroyed by a fire in the 1960s. This ten acre estate was known as Fountain Grove and was located in Lafayette on Union street where Union and Salem street intersect. Currently, the Earlhurst business park.

 

The webmaster would like to extend a special thank you to Cheryl Gentry for submitting her collection of Vintage Earl Park photos to this website.

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E.C. Sumner was a noted Indiana Cattle baron. After purchasing Topeneebee's reserve in 1846, his land holdings were 36,000 acres.

His statue stands in the center of his family plot on high ground in the Earl Park cemetery. He faces to the South with a view of the prairie that extends for many miles.

An inscription reads:

"Sumner in stone, contemplates what in life he once owned."

Edward C. Sumner

(1811-1882)

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Earl Park Military Band, turn of the century.

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C. Everly

Street view 1908.

Looking east. The Earl Park American Legion building is visible in the right edge of the photo.

Additional Image, same location Gentry

Additional image, 2006

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Street view 1908.

Looking South. The Thiene & Wagner building. (Now the Earl Park American Legion post 455)

Additional Image, with close up view of the horse and buggy

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The Ice storm of 1909.

Looking East down Railroad street from the side of the current American Legion building. The Depot is in the background.

Additional image 1909 Gentry

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Gentry

The "Big Four " water tank.

Used by the railroad to refill the storage tanks on the steam engines.

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Gentry

Earl Park Train Depot.

Looking to the East. The depot was new when this photo was taken. Notice the employees posing for the photo. Photo circa 1907.

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The Earl Park depot.

Looking to the West.

Notice the businesses on the left side of the tracks in the distance. None of which exist today. Photo circa 1915.

Additional image, 1907 with train Gentry

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The Richland Elevator.

Portions of the original structure is still standing at the West edge of town. The Caldwell home grounds are visible in the background. Photo circa 1909

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Richland Elevator 2006

The Richland Elevator.

At the West edge of town. The Caldwell home grounds are visible in the background. Photo circa 2006

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The Earl Park Cathedral.

Built in 1900. Damaged by fire in 1994, and torn down in the year 2000.

Photo circa 1900

Additional image with original church Gentry

Additional image of AltarGentry

Additional image, Father Webber funeral processionGentry

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The Earl Park Cathedral.

Built in 1900. Damaged by fire in 1994, and torn down in the year 2000.

Photo circa 2000

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The Presbyterian church

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Gentry

Additional Image 2007

The original Jennie E Caldwell Memorial Home, granddaughter of Edward Sumner

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Gentry

 

The second Jennie E Caldwell Memorial Home, granddaughter of Edward Sumner

Additional image 2007

Additional image, angle view Gentry

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Gentry

First Earl Park Public School

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Gentry

St. John the Baptist Catholic school

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Gentry

Additional image

J D Scott Restaurant, 1909

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Gentry

Earl Park post office, 1959.

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Gentry

The Jail, around 1900

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Gentry

Baseball in the town park, 1908

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Gentry

 

Interior view, Public library. Date unknown.

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Gentry

Matilde Moisant.

Pioneer aviatrix and the second woman in the USA to receive a pilot's license!

Born in Earl Park 1878.

Died in 1964.

Link to her biography

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