Indiana is the birthplace of the first black Supreme Court Justice, Thurgood Marshall. He was born in Baltimore, Maryland, but grew up in Indiana, where he attended high school and college.

Putnam County, Indiana has a rich and diverse history that dates back to the early 19th century. The county was named after Israel Putnam, a hero of the American Revolutionary War. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Miami and Delaware tribes. Settlement by European Americans began in the early 1820s, and the county was formally established in 1822.

During the 19th century, Putnam County saw significant growth and development. It became a prominent agricultural region, with farming and livestock becoming the main economic activities. The arrival of railroads in the mid-1800s further boosted growth, connecting the county to larger markets for its agricultural produce and encouraging industrial development.

In addition to its agricultural and industrial growth, Putnam County also played a role in the Underground Railroad. Some residents were active in helping enslaved African Americans escape to freedom in the northern states and Canada. Places like the Lincoln School and Indiana Asbury University (now DePauw University) were important centers of the anti-slavery movement in the county.

The 20th century brought further changes and advancements to Putnam County. The county's agricultural economy evolved, with farming practices becoming more mechanized. The manufacturing sector also expanded, with the establishment of factories and industries that produced goods ranging from automobiles to farm machinery. Today, Putnam County continues to thrive as a diverse community, blending its rich history with a dynamic present.

  • 1821 - Putnam County was established on January 7th.
  • 1831 - The county seat was relocated from Greencastle to Manhattan.
  • 1833 - The county seat was moved back to Greencastle.
  • 1861-1865 - Putnam County participated in the American Civil War.
  • 1875 - DePauw University was founded in Greencastle.
  • 1899 - The Cataract Falls State Reserve was established.
  • 20th Century - Putnam County experienced agricultural growth and development.
  • 1990s - The county saw a rise in population due to growth in the Indianapolis metropolitan area.