Bellefontaine St.
Location: Near East side, Runs North-South
Indianapolis & Bellefontaine Railroad;  Bellefontaine, OH

The Indianapolis and Bellefontaine Railroad was Indiana’s second railroad line and once ran along Massachusetts Ave. and south along the current path of Bellefontaine St.

The company started in 1846 as the Pendelton and Indianapolis Railroad.  The new railroad was chartered in 1848 and connected with Union City, Indiana and Bellfontaine, Ohio.  Bellefontaine, which means “beautiful spring” in French, is an east central Ohio town that served as a railroad hub throughout the 19th and 20th centuries.

Ownership of the railroad changed several times, but it was eventually absorbed by the Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Indianapolis Railroad in 1889.

All Photos Courtesy Sergio Bennett

5 responses to “What’s in a Name: Bellefontaine”

  1. basil berchekas jr says:

    Considering the economic vitality that the “railroad” had on Indianapolis, blogs on Indianapolis are always very interesting…believe this is now the CSX, which was CONRAIL, which was the Penn Central, which was the New york Central, which had purchased the “Big Four” before (the Brightwood shops and yard were built there, plus the first roundtable designed by the Greenleaf company, I believe!)

  2. matt says:

    Cool, I love learning about this city!

    What’s the correct way to pronounce Bellefountaine? I’ve heard it pronounced like Bell-Fountain and Bella fountAine.

  3. basil berchekas jr says:

    Several years ago, a lady who grew up on this street said “Bella fountAine”…but that’s just one person…

  4. Carmen S says:

    My grandparents lived in the 1300 block of Bellefontaine, and as a little girl, we stayed with them during the day as my parents worked. I went to kindergarten at School #10 at the corner of 12th and Carrollton. When the highway came through in the 60’s, in exchange for that HUGE house with all it’s beautiful parquet floors, awesome crown moldings, and exquisite stone and woodwork, they gave my Grandfather just enough to get a little boxy bungalow on the eastside. They also told him not to remove ANYTHING out of the house…now you can see those homes in the old Northside, but they didn’t realize what they had. My Mom, Aunt, and Uncle went to Attucks when she was a teenager, and her younger siblings (still at home as teenagers when I was small) went to Tech. The highway took out the school, and the whole block of my little friends and their parents/grandparents. Wow…time.

  5. Anonymous says:


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