JBA Network
(Location, Name, Category, or Keyword)   Advanced Search
Fort Wayne, IN (Population: 223,341)

Fort Wayne is a city located in northeastern Indiana. The city was founded at the site of a U.S. Army fort named after Gen. "Mad" Anthony Wayne. The fort was located near the Kekionga, the largest of the Indian tribe Miami villages. The Miami nation established the first settlement at the Maumee, St. Joseph, and St. Mary's Rivers in the mid- 17th century. Kekionga was also the traditional capital of the Miami nation and related Algonquian tribes.

In 1790, President George Washington ordered the United States Army to secure Indiana. Three battles were fought in Kekionga against Little Turtle and the Miami Confederacy. The Miami forces defeated the American army in the first two battles. Anthony Wayne led a third expedition, destroying the village while its warriors were away. When the tribe returned to their destroyed village, Little Turtle decided to negotiate peace, which General Wayne refused. The tribe was forced to Fallen Timbers where they were defeated on August 20, 1794. On October 22, 1794, the United States Army captured the Wabash-Erie portage from the Miami Confederacy and built the new Fort Wayne, near the three rivers.

Fort Wayne was officially incorporated as a city in 1840. During the early- to mid- 20th century, the area became a major manufacturing center whose employers were the pioneers of the electronics and automotive industries. Major companies like General Electric, International Harvester, and Tokheim, who manufactured gasoline pumps, provided substantial employment opportunities.

Most of the population growth at that time was from large numbers of people who came from Germany and Ireland looking for factory work. In recent years, there has been more economic growth in the areas of logistical transportation and military contracting. Ratheon and ITT presently employ over 1,000 people each, and Kitty Hawk Air Cargo supplies over 2,500 jobs. Today, the city is Indiana's second largest after Indianapolis with approximately 223,341 residents as of 2005.

For all of its industrial history, Fort Wayne also has a rich art and theatre scene. Some of the venues and organizations include: the Embassy Theatre, Fort Wayne Philharmonic Orchestra, Scottish Rite Center, First Presbyterian Theatre, Bower North Productions, the Fort Wayne Dance Collective, Cinema Center, Artlink, Fort Wayne Mannerchor/Damenchor, Foellinger Theatre, Arts United Center, Fort Wayne Youtheatre, Fort Wayne Civic Theatre, the Firehouse Theater, Bach Collegium, IPFW Department of Music, IPFW Department of Theatre, Fort Wayne Ballet, Festival Choir of Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne Children's Choir, Fort Wayne Cinema Center, and Heartland Chamber Chorale.

The Fort Wayne Museum of Art permanently features a 1,300-piece collection, as well as traveling exhibits. Other notable attractions include: the Allen County Courthouse, Buckner Farm Park, Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, Foster Park, Franke Park, Fort Wayne Children's Zoo, Freimann Square, Headwaters Park, Historic Old Fort, Hurshtown Reservoir, Japanese Garden, Johnny Appleseed Park (including the gravesite of Johnny Appleseed), Lakeside Park, Lindenwood Nature Preserve, McMillen Park, Little Turtle Memorial, and Shoaff Park.

Fort Wayne is the home of Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW), and with an enrollment of 11,755 is the 5th-largest public university campus in Indiana. The city also holds the main campus of the Northeast Region of Ivy Tech Community College, the second-largest public community college campus in the state. Indiana University (IU) maintains the third public higher educational facility in the city with the Fort Wayne Center for Medical Education, a branch of the IU School of Medicine.