Author: Rudy Schouten

Then & Now: Knickerbacker Hall, 1545 Central Avenue

Knickerbacker Hall (misspelled) from a post card mailed in 1910 If you have ever driven south of 16th Street on Central Avenue, you may have noticed a big church on the southeast corner. What you may not have noticed is the more recent recessed addition and long lawn south of the historic church. If your family tree stretches back 100+ years, one of your ancestors may have been educated in the building that used to stand there. It was September 1891 when the four-story “Saint Mary’s Hall” opened in what is now Old Northside. Built for $20,000 on the...

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Ambassador Apartments, 39 E. 9th Street

Ambassador Apartments, July 2017 (Image: Tammy C. Millott) Despite efforts to the contrary, the Ambassador is standing after 93 years and firmly set on its original foundation. Sixteen years ago, planners, architects, preservationists, neighbors and members of the St. Joseph Historic Neighborhood Association debated proposals to raze or move the Ambassador Apartments at 9th and Pennsylvania Streets. The building stood in the way of plans for a 267,000-square-foot addition to the Marion County Public Library. Not everyone was satisfied with the decision, but on July 19, 2001, library officials voted to modify blueprints for the $100 million expansion: The...

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Then & Now: Canterbury Apartments

The Canterbury Apartments, 1603 Central Avenue, as they appeared in 1919. Looking at northeast corner of 16th and Central. (Bass Photo Co. Collection, Indiana Historical Society.) In 1914, the vicinity of Sixteenth Street and Central Avenue was dominated by boarding houses and low-rise apartment buildings. The house that stood on the northeast corner belonged to J. Guy Haugh, an executive in the men’s clothing industry in Indianapolis.  Four years later, Haugh traded his house for a new complex of buildings on the same lot: the Canterbury Apartments. The Canterbury held its ground for eight decades, a lifespan that began...

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Then & Now: Schrader Building, 101 S. Pennsylvania Street

C.A. Schrader Building, 101-105 South Pennsylvania Street, home of C.A. Schrader Wholesale Grocer from 1901 to 1953.  (Image: Bass Photo Collection, Indiana Historical Society) The American Civil War had yet to begin when C. F. Schrader opened a grocery store at Virginia Avenue and McCarty Street. His four sons, Edward, Charles, Christian A., and Henry, helped in their father’s shop every day after school. This is how one local multigenerational family business was born. Edward and Charles spent their careers in their father’s store. Henry and Christian A. Schrader ventured into another aspect of the grocery business. In 1883, they...

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