Historic Structures of
Indianapolis, in the central part of the state, is the capital of
Indiana and seat of Marion Co. Incorporated as a city 1847, and
the largest city in Indiana, Indianapolis is a commercial manufacturing,
transportation, and cultural center situated in the "Corn
Belt" agricultural region.
Points of interest include the home of President
Benjamin Harrison; the home of the Hoosier Poet James Whitcomb
Riley; the State Capitol (completed 1888); Union Station; the
Soldiers and Sailors Monument (1902), in Monument Circle, the
heart of the city; Woodruff Place and Lockerbie Square historic
districts; Indiana World War Memorial Plaza, including the American
Legion national headquarters building; and the Gothic-style Scottish
Rite Cathedral (1929).
Numerous cultural institutions and museums
are in Indianapolis. In addition, the city supports modern dance
and ballet companies, a symphony orchestra, an opera company,
and several theater groups, including the Indiana Repertory Theatre.
The community was named Indianapolis in 1821,
and the U.S. engineer Alexander Ralston who assisted the French
architect Pierre L'Enfant in planning Washington, D.C., was commissioned
to lay out the community.
In the 1960s and '70s major programs of urban
redevelopment were undertaken by the city. Indianapolis, unfortunately,
does not have the most progressive attitude toward historic preservation
in the state, but a growing awareness of the city's architectural
assets has resulted in a thriving preservationist community.