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Contact: Maureen Callahan
317.977.2206, ext. 246

Carmel Redevelopment Commission Honors Old Town Carmel Landmarks with Historic Plaques
by Erin K. Witt

Nov. 3, 2008

Carmel, Ind. – As the Arts & Design District continues to bloom in Old Town Carmel, a joint effort by the Carmel Arts Council and the Carmel Redevelopment Commission is paying homage to the history that paved its way.

On Saturday, Nov. 8 during the Carmel Gallery Walk, two new plaques will be unveiled, marking notable locations and landmarks from the Carmel of days past.

A marker will be hung outside of The Great Frame Up, 21 1st St. S.W., to recognize Carmel's First Doctor’s Office. This historic home was built in the l890s by Dr. L.S. Campbell to serve as his personal medical office. Originally located at the corner of Main Street (now Range Line Road) and Water Street (now First Street S.W.), the home was moved to this location in 1921.  Dr. J.T. McShane purchased the house and later sold it to D.K.C. Hershey, one of the oldest practicing physicians in Hamilton County. Dr. Hershey was the last physician to use this house as a medical office before his death in August 1927.

The second plaque commemorates Carmel’s First Silent Film Theater,once housed in the building now home to Carmel Old Town Antique Mall, 38 W. Main St. This building was constructed in 1910 as a 24-hour auto garage. In 1927, it housed Carmel's first fire truck until the town fire station could be built. Silent films were shown in a room upstairs, which was reached by an outside stairway on the east side of the building. During this heyday of the silver screen, local pianists accompanied the action on the screen. The Economy Elevator Co., which made grain elevators for farmers, occupied the building after the curtain fell on the movie house. After standing empty for years, the building was renovated in 2003 for its current occupant.  

These plaques join existing markers recognizing Carmel’s First Library and the Carmel Theater. In the future, walking tours of these and other historical sites will be made available to visitors in the Carmel Arts & Design District.  

The first plaque unveiling will take place at the Carmel Old Town Antique Mall at 6 p.m., followed by a second plaque to be unveiled at The Great Frame Up. Participants are invited to enjoy a wine tasting at Ferrin’s Fruit Winery at the conclusion of the ceremony. The unveilings occur in conjunction with the 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Carmel Gallery Walk.

Parking is available at the Carmel Lions Club parking lot, National City Bank parking lot and other public parking areas, as well as on-street parking.

For a more information about the Carmel Arts & Design District and a list of galleries, eateries and merchants, visit www.carmelartsanddesign.com or call 317.571.ARTS.

The Carmel Arts & Design District is the Midwest’s newest, premier setting for the arts and design industry. Already it has attracted well over 100 businesses, including art galleries, antique dealers, furniture and interior design showrooms, even a race track design company! There are restaurants, boutiques, creative service providers, and an eclectic variety of specialty retail stores. And the list of merchants continues to grow.

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