Lake Maxinkuckee Its Intrigue History & Genealogy Culver, Marshall, Indiana

Commercial District of downtown Culver Part 2  

Part 1

Culver Commercial (downtown) Historic District

The Culver Commercial Historic District is located in the town of Culver in Union Township in the southwest part of Marshall County.

The town is situated on the northwest side of Lake Maxinkuckee, the second largest, natural, inland lake in Indiana. The center of Culver is near the northwest point of the lake. The town extends south and east along the waterfront.

Culver Military Academy is on the north side of the lake near the east shore. Along the east, south, and west shores are houses of the resort community of Lake Maxinkuckee. The surrounding area is mainly farmland.

Sanborn maps for Culver, dating from 1906, 1914, 1924, [and 1937] show that the main commercial area has historically been concentrated in the two blocks on Main Street between Washington and Madison.

The earliest commercial buildings were small, wood frame structures.

After the turn of the 20th century, these were gradually replaced by larger, wood frame, or brick structures.

One of the oldest extant buildings is the north half of the Osborn Block (right in 2), which appears is the Medbourn Ice House. Most of these structures are now gone, a 1901 photograph of Main Street. Also visible in the 1901 photograph is the two-story wood frame building located at 108 S. Main Street (left in 6). The Menser Building at 116-20 N. Main Street, a two-story, brick building which originally housed a meat market and bakery, was built in 1903.

The south half of the Osborn Block had been constructed by 1906, the year the Sanborn Company first mapped the town of Culver . Also appearing on this map is a two-story, brick building, which was remodeled c.1920 for the Easterday Funeral Home, at 108 N. Main Street; and a t wo-story, brick building, also remodeled c.1920, at 103 S. Main Street.

By 1914, the two-story, wood frame buildings at 117 S. Main, and

110 S. Main Street had been constructed.

The 1924 Sanborn map shows the Knights of Pythias Building at 110-12 N. Main Street, which dates from c.1915. This building replaced two earlier wood frame commercial buildings.

The Carnegie Library at 107-11 N. Main Street, completed in 1916, replaced a wood frame dwelling. 

The concrete block building at 115 S. Main Street, built c.1920, replaced a one-story, wood frame, commercial building.

The c. 1935 service station on the southwest corner of Main and Jefferson Streets was constructed on the site of a wood frame dwelling which had earlier served as a boarding house.

The one-story, brick, commercial building located at 114 N. Main, was built on a vacant lot in about 1930.

Two wood frame houses were removed to make way for the 1935 U. S. Post Office on W. Jefferson Street.

There are two vacant areas in the historic district.

The one on the southeast corner of Main and Jefferson Street contained a two-story, wood frame commercial building which housed J. Saine & Son, a dry goods store. This was torn down in 1932 to make way for a service station which was later demolished itself.  

This was the location of two one-story, wood frame buildings, built c. 1910 and demolished in 1990.

The south building was Rectorís Pharmacy, a long-time Culver business.

Three of the non-contributing buildings in the district replaced earlier buildings of note.

The one-story brick building atn 105 W. Washington Street, built c. 1950 , was constructed on the
site of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

The bank located on the northwest corner of Main and Jefferson Streets was originally the State Exchange Bank, located on this corner by 1914.

The Culver Hardware Store on the northeast corner of Main and Madison Streets is on the site of an earlier hardware store, the O. T. Goss Store

The Goss Store, comprised of two, two-story, wood frame buildings, was at this location by 1906.

Outside the historic district boundaries, on East Jefferson Street between Main Street

and the Pennsylvania Railroad tracks, there were transportation-related and industrial buildings. Among these were liveries (replaced later by garages),

the Ferrier Lumber Company

Dillon and Medbourn Grain Elevator,

John Osbornís cement block factory, warehouses, and

the Medbourn Ice House.

Most of these structures are now gone,replaced by a condominium. complex

Two automobile garages remain on the south side and one on the north side of Jefferson Street, east of Main Street.

Part 3