Thursday, March 11, 2010
Greenfield, IN - it's more than corn and John Deere tractors.....
Early settlers of this are settled along the two creeks that flow through Greenfield. Being an agricultural community, they built grist mills to grind the wheat and corn they were growing. Greenfield was officially incorporated as a city in 1876. Natural gas was discovered in the area in 1887 which led to rapid progress and growth over the following 20 years. Greenfield became the county seat (1828) and was a stop along the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad that connected Pittsburgh to Chicago and St. Louis. These tracks were removed in the 1980's. US 40 (the National Road) was built through Hancock County (and Greenfield) around 1835. It was heavily traveled by wagon trains going west and livestock going to Cincinnati. Currently there is an annual "National Historic Road Yard Sale" that has run for the last 6 years for over 824 miles of US 40 from Baltimore to St. Louis. The last census (2000) had the population at 14,600, but there has been tremendous growth since then, so I'm sure the 2010 census will reflect much higher numbers.
I personally lived in Greenfield as a child and my mother retired as an elementary school teacher from the Greenfield Schools. I have seen the community grow and change, yet so much remains the same - which is a good thing! The small town atmosphere remains while staying relevant to the current trends. I-70 runs through Greenfield giving easy access to Indianapolis to the West and Dayton, OH to the East.
There are events that have defined Greenfield over the years. It is the birthplace of poet James Whitcomb Riley, and you can visit his historic home just west of downtown Greenfield. The Riley Festival is an annual 4 day event that beings the first Thursday in October. It features a varied number of performances, concerts, contests and streets lined with craft, art and food vendors. During the months of June and July, Greenfield Banking Company sponsors outdoor concerts every Friday evening at the Courthouse Plaza. The newly renovated H.J. Ricks theater has their own community theatre and hosts other live performances year round.
Greenfield is a great place to live and do business!