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Parks History 1800-1899

1800-1899

Year

Event

1863

Old Fort Park, first city park, purchased by Mr. Henry Williams and given to city. (Site of Anthony Wayne's first fort.)

1866

Northside Park acquired to be home of the Indiana State Fair.

1869

Colonel Thomas W. Swinney leased his property to the City. It became known as Swinney Park.

1875

Colonel Swinney died and bequeathed his property to the City as a park with the condition that his family should have the home as long as they lived.

1876

Hayden Park acquired.

1880

Reservoir Park developed when the City reservoir was built.

1886

McCulloch Park given to the City by Mr. Hugh McCulloch.

1893

City leased more land for Swinney Park from Swinney heirs.

1894

Park Department formed under control of the Board of Public Works.

1895

Colonel Foster headed up a committee to investigate formation of a municipal park board. He believed that Fort Wayne should have a city park within a 10 minute walk of every home.

1896

August W. Goers was the first Park Superintendent, serving in that capacity at a time when parks were under the jurisdiction of the Board of Works. During his tenure Lawton, Swinney, Reservoir, McCulloch, Hayden, Weisser and Lakeside parks were developed as beauty spots of their time. All of this was reportedly accomplished at a very low cost to the taxpayers.

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