The Historic Photographs were originally part of the Allen County Public Library’s Indiana Collection Vertical File. The images consist primarily of photographs donated to the library from various sources, including private collections and the Fort Wayne newspapers. Some library staff members photographed buildings or places of interest and donated snapshots. Although there are photographs from all over Indiana, most have a Fort Wayne or Allen County emphasis. There are some photos from the 1880s and 1890s, but most date from the early 1900s to the 1970s. The library still maintains the original photographs in its special collections. While not comprehensive, this collection provides an interesting look at the Fort Wayne that was.
This collection, continually expanding through the cooperative efforts area citizens, contains images of people, places, and organizations in Fort Wayne, Allen County, and northeast Indiana. These images have been provided to the library for the Allen County Community Album, or the original photographs have been loaned to the library to scan and mount in the album. As it grows, this collection will become an increasingly important complement to the Historic Photos Collection in capturing the memories of this community.
Franklin P. Randall (1812-1892) was an attorney, state legislator, and Fort Wayne's "Civil War mayor." With his wife Mary Jane (Reed) (1829-1912), he was the father of seven children. The family was prominent in Fort Wayne society. One daughter, Mrs. Caroline Fairbank, was a leader in the local Women's Suffrage movement. A son, Alfred "Larry" Randall, opened the city's first automobile dealership, and his wife, Grace (Hayden), also came from a prominent local family. The photograph collection contains images dating from the 1850s to the 1920s and consists mainly of portraits of members of the Randall and Hayden families and their friends, as well as pictures of the Randall home at the corner of Lafayette and Berry streets.
Elmhurst High School closed its doors in the summer of 2010 after almost 80 years educating young people in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Many who walked through its halls have fond memories of the school, including the 2009 Girls Basketball State Championship, 1984 Regional Title in Boys Basketball, and the Elmhurst Jazz Festival held from 1970 to 1994. James Hardy, who plays for the Buffalo Bills in the NFL, set records in the Summit Athletic Conference while playing basketball for Elmhurst. More than two thousand images of the school and its history are presented here.
Contact The Genealogy Center if you have images you’d like to contribute to this Community Album.
The Fire Fighter Photograph images are from the collection of Donald A. Weber, a retired professional fire fighter and photographer, as well as from the personal collections of fire fighters Mr. Weber knew or with whom he worked. Not only do these images portray the important work of the Fort Wayne Fire Department over many decades, they also provide glimpses of Fort Wayne buildings, fire fighting equipment, and streetscapes no longer in existence.
Bert Griswold worked as a reporter and cartoonist, developing a deep interest in the history of Fort Wayne and Allen County. These historic images are from his works, published and unpublished.
This collection of Fort Wayne, Indiana postcards was assembled over a period of more than thirty-five years by the author of Postcard History: Fort Wayne, Randolph L. Harter, with the assistance of his wife Patricia K. Harter. This rare collection has been gifted to the ACPL by the Harters, and pictorially covers 20th century Fort Wayne, with the majority of the images coming from the “Golden Age” of postcards, a period from about 1905-1917. Included in this valuable collection are several thousand views covering Fort Wayne schools, hospitals, parks, hotels, restaurants, retailers, business and industry, transportation, government buildings, aerial and street views, vistas and local fire, flood and train disasters.