The Blackford County Courthouse in Indiana (1894-)

Although it’s been long since bypassed by the interstate, Indiana State Road 3 still provides a scenic route through the countryside of northeastern Indiana that can be traveled relatively quickly. I became acquainted with the road from trips to visit family during my childhood, but it took constant weekend drives back home to Muncie from my Fort Wayne apartment to become really close with it. Without question, the highway’s most prominent landmark is the Blackford County Courthouse in Hartford City. I eventually wondered how such an impressive courthouse wound up in a county seat that seemed so ordinary.

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Wayne Township’s District 7 schoolhouse in Hamilton County

Wayne Township’s District 7 schoolhouse was apparently known by number and doesn’t appear to have had a colloquial name. In 1866, the building sat on 160 acres of land owned by the Huntzinger family1. Based on the building’s appearance, it probably replaced a log or frame structure in the 1890s.

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The Colleton County Courthouse in South Carolina (1820-)

One of my favorite things about traveling is being exposed to things different from what we have at home. I don’t just mean swapping White Castle for Krystal, either: as a kid, I was fortunate to grow up with parents who stressed the importance of experiencing authentic slices of local culture on our trips, whether they found us in Montreal, Belize, New Orleans, or the ruined Mayan city of Chichén Itzá. The South Carolina Lowcountry is no different- here in the midwest, two-hundred-year-old Greek Revival Courthouses aren’t exactly common!

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Peder Jeppesen’s Neerup pipes and accessories got me all like Nee-YUP!

I thought long and hard about what would be the first new pipe I’d ever buy for myself when I first got back into smoking them. Eventually, I came across a $120 sandblasted tomato from Neerup, a brand I’d never heard of. I loved how it looked, but analysis paralysis got the best of me and someone else snagged it. I wound up with two lesser pipes instead, but I eventually bought a Neerup of my own, a Classic Smooth Bent Pot. With some experience under my belt now, I can honestly say that Neerup pipes are the best value for the money. Anywhere!

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The Starke County Courthouse in Indiana (1897-)

The Starke County Courthouse in rural Knox, Indiana has a tantalizing pedigree. Its architects, John F. Wing and Marshall Mahurin of Fort Wayne were responsible for many of Indiana’s landmarks, including courthouses in Greenfield and Bloomington and a replacement clock tower for the one in Decatur. They also drew up plans for city halls in Fort Wayne and Kokomo, the 214-foot tall St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Fort Wayne, and the Riley School in Greenfield.

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Harrison Township’s Bethel schoolhouse in Delaware County

If I had to rank all of Delaware County’s one-room schoolhouses based on their architectural merits, I’d probably grant the top honors to the old Bethel schoolhouse that served Harrison Township’s District 6. The building predated the era of township-wide consolidated schools, but it was extraordinarily impressive in its day. It was so impressive, in fact, that it’s hard to believe that what’s left of the structure is even the same building.

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Harrison Township’s Beech Grove schoolhouse in Delaware County

In 1876, William Carpenter granted the trustees of Harrison Township a portion of his land on which to erect a schoolhouse1. Five years later, J.C. Muncey served as teacher2. In 1894, a frame United Brethren church was constructed to the school’s southwest, opposite a jog in West County Road 700-North3.

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