MP 172.4 2nd Subdivision -
Nora Grain and Coal Company, circa 1947. In 1871 Peter Lawson named the post office for a town in southern Sweden. Another version of how Nora camed to be named is that of it being named after a wife of a Swedish storekeeper in the community. Part of a land grant to Abraham Bowen, the town consisted of a post office, general store, blacksmith shop, a two room schoohouse, churches and the elevator (Newby Feed Mill) pictured. The Monon arrived in 1883. The town's rapid development was preceeded by the paving of a dirt road, today known as 86th Street in 1942. The building of the Nora Plaza Shopping Plaza in 1957, dramatically changed the rural nature and atmosphere. Today Nora is part of the greater Indianapolis metropolitan area. The former mainline is now part of the Monon Trail.
Newby Feed Mill, Nora. Date unknown.
Steam locomotive #413 working local switching near Nora, 1946. (Editor's Note: We are not 100% certain this location is Nora, but it was indicated near Nora on the photograph.)
Left and Right: Milepost B171.8, Nora. Wreck train working to clear a derailment, December 1969.
Side view of the wreck train at Nora, near 75th Street.
Left: Looking south along the former right of way from a location about 500 yards north of 86th Street. Right: Old telephone building north of 86th at Nora.
Left: Concrete base of a signal along the right of way. This base is about 5 feet south of the telephone shack. Right: Looking to the north along the former right of way from 86th Street.
Left: Looking south along the former right of way at 86th Street. Right: Another view looking south along the old right of way. This location is about 600-700 yards south of 86th Street.
Left: Looking north along the former right of way towards 86th Street. Right: Old ties from a siding or passing siding still in place east of the mainline. This location is to the east of where the left photo was taken. It looks like there was a passing siding at one time.
MP B 175.3 2nd Subdivision - Bo
As early as 1821, pioneers began settling the area near the present site of Broad Ripple. Yet it was not until 1837 that people started coming to the area in great numbers. In late 1836 or early 1837, construction began on the Indianapolis link of the Central Canal, one of the many projects in canal building which followed the completion of the great Erie Canal in 1825. The town of Broad Ripple was established on the banks of the White River in 1836 by Jacob Coil. One year later construction of the Canal began. The town of Wellington was platted on the south side of the canal. In 1884 Wellington became part of Broad Ripple. In 1922 the town of Broad Ripple was annexed into Indianapolis. -"History Of Broad Ripple" Broad Ripple High School 1967, Courtesy Broadripplehistory.com -
Barthel Hotel, also known as The When, circa 1900. The Barthel Hotel burned down, but the Ripple Hotel, built in the 1890's by the Medsker family on the southwest corner of Westfield and Winthrop, is still in use today with shops on the first floor and apartments above. -"History Of Broad Ripple" Broad Ripple High School 1967, Courtesy Broadripplehistory.com -
Broad Ripple school building. Built on the south bank of White River in the geographical center of Washington Township, the school opened in 1884 with Josiah Savin Puett as principal. -"History Of Broad Ripple" Broad Ripple High School 1967, Courtesy Broadripplehistory.com -
Broad Ripple Park had its beginning when Jonas Huffman received a 60.05 acre tract of land north of Indianapolis from the United States government on September 16, 1822. In 1907, the park became the great amusement center known as White City when the White City Company of Indianapolis, owned by W. H. Tabb and Dr. Robert C. Light, leased the park for nine years. The park was given the nickname of Broad Ripple Park since it was located on the outskirts of that community, and about 100 people from the village were employed there. The White City company added many facilities to the park, giving it the appearance of Coney Island. A Venetian canal, a fire show, a scenic railroad, an 80'x 100' concrete Natatorium or pool, and an open circus were located on the northeast side of the park. Amusements in the east section of the City included the "bump-the-bump," bowling alleys, the "Johnstown Flood," the Theaters of Paris, carousels, and other midway rides. One of the unique features of White City was the exhibit in which white horses jumped from an elevated platform into a tank of water. -"History Of Broad Ripple" Broad Ripple High School 1967, Courtesy Broadripplehistory.com -
Left: Broad Ripple Park as it was in its heyday during the early 1900's. In the background is the park's gigantic roller coaster. On the right is the "chute," one of the park's main amusements. Miniature boats slid down the ramp and ended up in the lagoon below. Right: Midway of Broad Ripple Park as it looked in the 1930's. On the left of the roller coaster, added to the park in 1922. One of the most fascinating midway features was the "dodge'em" shown in the center of the picture. -"History Of Broad Ripple" Broad Ripple High School 1967, Courtesy Broadripplehistory.com -
One of the main attractions at Broad Ripple Park during the early twentieth century was the miniature train that took little children on rides around the park. -"History Of Broad Ripple" Broad Ripple High School 1967, Courtesy Broadripplehistory.com -
Broad Ripple Aveune, then and now. Top of image shows Broad Ripple Avenue circa 1949. Note street car tracks. Bottom of image, circa 2003. -Courtesy Broadripplehistory.com -
Broad Ripple, circa 1917. Left: Monon mainline looking north. Right: Looking to the southeast (railroad south).
The LNA&C (Louisville, New Albany & Chicago) finished grading the line at Broad Ripple in February 1882. This left the line less than 10 miles from Indianapolis. Rails were pushed through Broad Ripple and Howlands (between Broad Ripple and Boulevard Station.) linking to the Lake Erie & Western. A depot at Broad Ripple was first established in 1894.
Br 178.4 -2nd Subdivision-
Original bridge over the White River in Broad Ripple. Photo was taken in 1901.
Left: North end of the White River bridge. Engineering dept poses for a picture. Right: North approach to the White River bridge.
Standing at north end of White River Bridge looking south, circa July, 1987. The Indianapolis Art Center Artspark now occupies far right shore area, along with a canoe launch. The bridge is now part of the Monon Trail and has been rebuilt and reinforced.
White River Bridge, circa 1987. Left: South end of White River Bridge, looking north. Winston Island Woods condos now occupy far right shore area. Right: Side view of the White River Bridge.
Williams Creek Connector Bridge, circa 1987. Left: Side view of the Williams Creek Connector Bridge. Right: Standing at north end of Williams Creek Connector Bridge, looking south.
Broad Ripple, Indiana. Left: Looking at the former White River bridge, now part of the Monon Trail. Right: Standing in the center of the bridge.
Left: Former right of way, probably south of White River. Right: Standing at 65th Street, looking north past railroad car that still sits there.
Standing at 64th Street, looking south past the Whistle Stop, the actual Broad Ripple Depot, now a deli shop.
Standing just north of 75th Street, looking south at intersection. Indiana School for the Blind campus is on our right.
Northbound freight, with C-420 #503 in the lead passing the former Broad Ripple Depot.
Broad Ripple Depot. -MRHTS Photo Archives-
Left: Broad Ripple Depot, date unknown. Looking south. Right: Broad Ripple 2004. The depot and former mainline are now part of a walking trail.
The bridge over the Hydraulic Canal at Broad Ripple.. Now part of the Monon Trail.
Left: Mainline looking north at Broad Ripple. Note cabooses to the left of the picture. Not sure if they were Monon or not. Right: Mainline looking south.
Indianapolis Line freight near Westfield Blvd. The year is 1969.
Left and Right: Looking north along the right of way at Broad Ripple. -MRHTS Photo Archives Collection-
Looking north along the right of way, near mile post B 177. The water tower pictured is that of the Lux Laundry Company. The photo is believed to be circa 1950 - 1951 as evidenced by the rails lying alongside the mainline. The Monon replaced the rails with 115 pound ones in the early 1950's. The building to the right of the photo I beleieve is the A.R. Nicholas Company. Lux was the local Indianapolis "To Your Door" Laundry and Dry Cleaning service. The company did not manufacture the laundry soap by the same name.
Looking south along the mainline near milepost B177. The switch leads into the Shelhorn Company.
Pictured is a derailment that occured in Indianapolis in 1969. Information on back of photograph says the location was 75th and Westfield.
Kessler Avenue. Train #11 speeding south toward Union Station. The bridge was replaced when a truck became stuck, resulting in the bridge falling down. Note white band boxcar behind the locomotive.
MP B 178.5 2nd Subdivision -
Monon management came to understand that the Indianapolis branch's only real potential was as a passenger line. In 1922 Boulevard Station was constructed to serve the north side of Indianapolis as well as the State Fair Ground, which were just east of the tracks at 38th Street. The station boasted floral displays, adequate parking and for many years a house track for Pullman cars that were part of the Mid-night Special.
Northbound special at Boulevard Station, late 1930's. This excursion was on its way to Michigan City, Indiana. Courtesy Steve Dolzall.
Southbound making a station stop at Boulevard Station. Locomotive #431 in the lead. No date listed.
Southbound Hoosier making a stop at Boulevard Station. Unknown date.
Boulevard Station. Left: August 23, 1953. Note the presence of vehicles in the parking lot. Right: Boulevard Station, another look, date unknown. Looking north.
Left: May 1959. Train #11 making a stop at Boulevard Station. Right: The Hoosier , Train #14, running alonside the Indiana State Fairgrounds on the northside of Indianapolis.
Southbound arriving at Boulevard Station. August 23, 1953. -Courtesy Steve Dolzall-
Boulevard Station, circa late 1950's. Crowd await Train 11 or 12. Until 1938 Train #35 and #36 The Midnight Specials ran to Cincinnati, Indianapolis and for Boulevard. The Pullman for the special was placed on a side track that ran in back of the station. During World War II train service was reduced to one daytime train.
Boulevard Station, early 1960's.
NEW 01-23-2011 Northbound Hoosier about to cross 38th Street and will soon glide to a stop at the depot. -MRHTS Photo Archives Collection-
Northbound freight on the Air Line approaching 38th Street, late 1960s, early 1970's.
Boulevard Station, circa 2003. At least it looks like a railroad depot again.
Boulevard Station 2006
Boulevard Depot, circa 2006. Left: Looking at the north and east walls. You are looking to the southwest. Right: Look at the east wall of the depot.
Left: Back wall of the depot. Right: Shot from the former 38th Street crossing of the depot.
This pictures was taken April 6, 1981 in the Boulevard station area. Old Monon mainline looking south.