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History of Evansville, Indiana. There was a continuous human presence in the area that became Evansville from at least 8, BC by Paleo-Indians. Archaeologists have identified several archaic and ancient sites in and near Evansville, with the most complex at Angel Mounds. This was built and occupied from about A.

French hunters and trappers were among the first Europeans to come to the area, using Vincennes as a base of operations for fur trading. The land encompassing Evansville was formally relinquished by the Delaware in to General William Henry Harrison , then governor of the Indiana Territory. Evansville incorporated in and was designated as the county seat on January 7, The land comprising the former town of Lamasco was platted in and was annexed in The project bankrupted the state and was so poorly engineered that it would not hold water.

Only two flat barges ever made the entire trip. The city was a major stop for steamboats along the Ohio River, and it was the home port for a number of companies engaged in trade via the river.

Manufacturing also took off, particularly in the automobile and refrigeration industries. The Graham brothers, Ray, Robert, and Joseph, got their start with a successful glass factory in Evansville.

After they sold it in , the glass factory became Libbey-Owens-Ford. In , seeing the need for a dependable truck, the Graham brothers entered the truck chassis business. Evansville was home to Graham Brothers Trucks from then until The dependability of Graham trucks was due in part to their use of Torbensen internal gear drive rear axels. In , after the death of both Dodge brothers, Graham Brothers started selling 1. Dodge did not manufacture trucks at the time.

These vehicles had Graham chassis and some Dodge parts. Dodge Brothers bought a controlling interest in Graham Brothers in , picking up the rest in By , Evansville had more than two dozen furniture companies. A bridge was built across the Ohio River in and in that same decade steps were taken to develop an airport. But the Ohio River flood of covered city blocks in Evansville, resulting in a major crisis.

A huge, acre shipyard complex was constructed on the riverfront east of St. The Plymouth factory was converted into a plant which turned out "bullets by the billions," and many other companies switched over to the manufacture of war material. Evansville produced a total 6, Ps, almost half of the P47s made nationally during the war. A growing housing demand also caused residential development to leap north and east of the city. However, between and , a nationwide recession hit Evansville.

Among other closures, Servel which produced refrigerators went out of business and Chrysler ended its local operations. The economy was saved from near total collapse by 28 businesses that moved into the area, including Whirlpool , Alcoa , and General Electric.

A s economic spurt was fueled by the growth of the University of Southern Indiana. As the twenty-first century began, Evansville continued in a steady pace of economic diversification and stability. This area is sometimes referred to as " Kentuckiana ", although the area is usually referred to as the "Tri-State" by the local media. Most of the city lies in a shallow valley surrounded by low rolling hills. The eastern portion developed in the valley and is protected by a series of levees that closely follow the path of I Notable landmarks on the east side are the acre 1.

Other streets nearby were later laid out on the cardinal points, due north-south, and east-west. Thus, anyone entering or leaving downtown finds the street makes a confusing oblique-angle turn in one direction or another. The business district and riverfront feature riverboat gambling, restaurants, bars, and shops that attract tens of thousands of visitors each year.

A few blocks east of the main business district is the Riverside district , featuring tree-lined brick streets full of turn of the twentieth-century homes. Neighborhoods[ edit ] Evansville has thirteen neighborhoods that have qualified as historic districts and are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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