Yes Jenny, there is a Wabash Erie Canal Towpath Trail
TAKE A MOTOR TOUR ON THE WABASH ERIE CANAL TOWPATH TRAIL
…Biking & Hiking Trails Could Follow
Today you can ride the Wabash Erie Canal line in your car, bus or on your motorcycle from Fort Wayne to beyond Lafayette. Below are the street, road and highway directions with the few historic markers that now attempt to tell its story. You can stop at the several bike/hike ways that have been established in communities along the way. However, connecting these communities’ common heritage - one to the other – is the “Vision” for a celebration of the world’s second longest canal completed in the 19th century. For now the unique scenery and rich history of the Wabash Erie Canal can be enjoyed through your windshield.
Although the “motoring tour” can be picked up anywhere along the way, for a west bound excursion across northern Indiana, begin in Fort Wayne at the Allen County Fort Wayne History Center, 303 East Berry Street on Fort Wayne’s Bicentennial Heritage Trail.
Members of the Wabash Erie Canal Towpath Trail Banks of the Wabash Chapter may wish to consult these driving instructions for marking the route as an aid to visitors who want to follow the Towpath.
● Fort Wayne: Departing the Allen County Fort Wayne History Center parking area to the north, turn west (left) on Berry Street and immediately turn north (right) again at the stoplight at Barr Street. Advance one block to Main Street and turn west (left) and go two blocks to Calhoun Street at the Allen County Court House. Move ahead one block passing Columbia Street on the west (left) which is the “The Canal Landing.” Structures on the north side of The Landing are the reminders of the backs of warehouses and mercantile buildings that served the Canal. Continue south on Calhoun passing under the railroad tracks that replaced the Canal and since elevated marking the Wabash Erie route.
● At the Superior Street stop light look to the east (right) across the south east corner parking lot and to the two-story structure at its east end. Known as the Canal House, it has survived since 1852 when it was built of sturdy limestone. Another block east on the north side is Headwaters Park where a Canal historical sign is included with several Bicentennial Heritage Trail markers.
● At the Superior Street stoplight, turn west (left); the railroad line on the south side is the route of the Canal, and in one block’s distance cross over the now filled-in turnaround Orbison Basin. Follow Superior Street about one half mile to the 4-way stop at Van Buren Street and turn to the south (south). Cross back over the railroad tracks – and site of the Canal line – under the Fort Wayne Newspapers walk bridge to the Main Street stop light.
● Turn west (right) on Main Street passing Orff Park on the south (left) is a monument commemorating the Aqueduct Club, which was formed in the early 20th century by men who as boys swam in the old aqueduct.
● Crossing the Saint Mary’s bridge look downstream to the north (right) and near the site of the modern rail bridge is where the Saint Mary’s Aqueduct once provided boat passage over the river.
● Continuing west on Main Street eight blocks – paralleling the Canal line to the north – at Growth Street an…
Historical Marker relates the story of the Saint Joseph River Feeder’s junction with the main line of the Canal two blocks to the north and now buried under the railroad elevation.
● About three blocks is a fork in the road (to the north it becomes Leesburg Road) follow the old Canal line which is present-day West Main Street as it leads south past Lindenwood Cemetery (on the right) to U.S. 24.
● Turn west (right) on U.S. 24 and watch for Rockhill Park on the south (left) side, which is the beginning place of the River Greenway Towpath Trail that features three Bicentennial Heritage Trail Markers. At the U.S. 24 and Freeman Street stoplight turn south (left) and Rockhill Park is on the east and travel to the junction of Portage Avenue. Turn west (right) on Portage and the site of the Canal towpath to the stop sign where it joins with Taylor Street and continues west to the intersection of Ardmore Avenue.
● Turn to the south (left) on Ardmore to Covington Road and turn west (right) on Covington. At about 4/10ths of a mile the flat place in the road is the site of the intersection of the long abandoned Canal line. Another 6/10ths mile at the Smith Road stoplight, turn left heading south. At 6/10ths mile cross the Towpath Trail at Glendale Road and proceed another 4/10ths of a mile to Engle Road.
● Turn west on Engle Road and pass Eagle Marsh on the south side (left) of the road. It is part of Fox Island County Park preserving a sand dune that developed during an era of glacial drainage area between cycles when it was filled with water and when it was dry. Wind activity deposited sands in such a way to create present-day Fox Island.
● Ahead the road crosses the Canal bed and on to U.S. 24. Turn west on 24. Canal will be on the south (left) side of U.S. 24 or to the left. As the longest manmade waterway in America, the remains of the Wabash Erie Canal are buried under the highways, farm fields and buildings of our towns from Toledo, Ohio to Evansville, Ind. A marker once noted:
“The old ditch may still be traced as it parallels U.S. Highway 24 most of the distance between Antwerp, Ohio and Logansport, Indiana.”
● After passing under Interstate I-69, at 1 mile watch for East Woodland Ridge entering U.S. 24, which serves the addition known as the “Hamlets.” Here atop the bluff the scenery to the south (left) overlooks traces of Marias du Perches, the course of the Little Wabash River, the Maumee-Wabash Portage and the Wabash Erie Canal line in the glacier plain that is marked now with the railroad line once the domain of the Wabash Cannon Ball. Woodland Ridge west re-enters U.S. 24. Turn west (left) and continue through the Homestead Road stoplight and approximately one-half mile turn to the south on Redding Road,
● Redding Road quickly curves westward (right) and about 8/10ths of a mile joins the Canal bed in evidence on the south (left) berm of the road. The old channel’s prism is visible past a number of houses that have been erected Unfortunately there are places where the channel has been filled in and the historic artifact has been lost. Farther west Aboite Road from the south joins Redding. Here across from the juncture of the two roads stands the on the north (right) side stands the VERMILYEA HOUSE dating to 1839. This extant structure was a favorite stopping place for Canal boats and the first post office in Aboite Township of Allen County. Rumors persist of its role as an underground Rail Road station during the days that fugitives from slavery followed the towpath from southern Indiana on the Ohio River moving north to Canada and their freedom.
● To the west of Vermilyea House on the towpath was Ruffner’s Basin, a turnaround point and site of loading and unloading barges. Farther along Redding the road makes a sharp turn to the north to avoid Aboite River and the site of Aboite River Aqueduct No. 2 where Canal boats continued westward. Abutments of cut stone on each bank and during low water level in the river, a minimum of 25 foundation timbers are visible.
●Return to U.S. 24 turn west and pass along an immense gravel quarry at the Allen Whitley County Line Road. Prior to Canal construction this was the site of the Miami’s White Raccoon Village.
● Once the Wabash Erie Canal touched the south east corner of Whitley County for a distance of one-half mile now the towpath has been replaced by U.S. 24. The old Canal channel under the highway from approximately the Aboite River extended to Huntington, Indiana.
● South west on U.S. 24 the road today and the Canal yesteryear crossed CALF CREEK over Culvert No. 34.
● Entering Roanoke from the north, the highway passes through what was once a TURNAROUND BASIN near the bowling alley Roanoke Lanes. About 2/10ths of a mile beyond on the right is the Boat House probably used as a layover for boat crews.
● Approaching the stoplight at Roanoke on the west (right) side of the highway is near the site of the first lock west of the Summit Level of the Canal and known as Dickey Lock.
Historical Marker: Originally numbered Lock 1 in 1834-35 when the first leg of the Canal opened between Fort Wayne and Huntington, it was later renumbered Lock 4 when the Canal was completed to the Ohio line in 1840.
● A few yards before the stoplight is the actual site of Dickey Lock No. 4 it and the western end of the 16-mile long “Summit Level.” Back to the north and east, the next lock was Moots Lock between Anthony Blvd and Glasgow Street in Fort Wayne’s east side.
● Lock foundation timbers are still visible in the bed of McPherrens Creek.
● Cross Cow Creek site of old Culvert No. 36, and about 4 miles farther the highway and the once Canal line crossed Bull Creek.
● In between at Mahon Road was the site of the Port Mahon an important stop on the Canal and a once bustling town. Founded by Archibald Mahon, it was laid out on June 30, 1853. His brother Samuel Mahon was captain of the first boats made by Barthold & Sons of Fort Wayne.
● Cross Bull Creek site of old Aqueduct No. 3.
● From Bull Creek heading west depart the U.S. 24 bypass around Huntington and follow East Park Avenue and continue just over 4/10ths of a mile and cross Flint Creek once the site of Aqueduct No. 4.
● Huntington Indiana: Samuel Mahon guided his Canal boat Indiana here on July 3, 1835 marking the opening of the first leg of the project. The Canal passed through center of town.
● Upper Lock No. 5: raised and lowered boats 9 feet and was probably west of the intersection of Tipton and First streets
● Continue west on Tipton Street to Guilford Street and go south one block to Park Avenue and turn west. Proceed one block at Park Avenue and Warren pass and notice the marker for Burke Lock No. 6 that once stood at the intersection of Byron and Tipton streets, but later moved to Warren and Park.
Historical Marker: Burke Lock No. 6 raised and lowered boats 8-feet and the site of the docking of the first boat Indiana that opened the Canal from Fort Wayne to Huntington.
● Remain on course one block and turn south (right) on to Jefferson Street and cross the Canal line, which ran diagonally west of Warren and East Park Drive and now hidden by commercial buildings - such as the Huntington Theater and Nick’s Kitchen - standing over the channel. Proceed one block to Washington Street.
● On Washington Street a marker stands:
Historical Marker: Huntington Landing began 120 feet west on Washington Street and continued to a lock at Cherry Street. It reiterates that other locks were at First Street and at Byron Street.
● At Cherry Street turn south (right), Davies Lock No. 7 was at the west end of a turning basin at Cherry and Washington streets. The route of the Canal passed through present-day Huntington Township Library. One block south at West Market Street (on the north east corner of Cherry and West Market is a building once known as the Canal Hotel.)
● Follow West Market as it merges with West State Street to North Lafontaine Street. Turn north (right) on Lafontaine and at the 1/2 block point is the site of Sunderman Lock No. 8 and another 1/2 block reach West Park Avenue.
● Turn west (left) on to West Park Avenue. Passing over Sunken Garden Park (see Historical Marker that recollects the lime industry of Huntington) and past the limestone Fugitive Jail reportedly used by Lambdin P. Milligan, a states’ rights advocate who once lived near here. He was found in 1850s holding fugitive slaves awaiting return to the South by bounty hunters. In 1864, arrested and tried for treason by a military tribunal, he was found guilty and sentenced to hang before he was pardoned by Secretary of War Edwin Stanton. The Supreme Court ruled, in Ex parte Milligan 1866 and marks the decision, that a civilian cannot be tried in a military court if the civil courts are functioning.
● Across the highway from Mt. Hope Cemetery is the site of the long now-disappeared “Madison” Lock No 9. Next, across from Victory Noll is an inn build in 1840 to serve travelers on the Canal. It was once the home of Lambdin P. Milligan. From the highway a short distance, it is possible to discern the old towpath.
● One-half mile below the joining of the Wabash River and the Little Wabash stands Historic Forks of the Wabash, has preserved nearly a mile of the Wabash Erie Canal including the archival remnants of Forks Lock No. 10. Here too is the recognized “landing place” of the great Portage that connected the Maumee and Wabash river valleys and the most direct of land bridges between the Atlantic seaboard and the Mississippi River system.
● Along the Fork’s Canal Towpath Trail are five Historical Markers that point out specific details of the waterway through the park. Included are the stories about the dam in the river across from the lock. It was the 220 feet long Wabash Dam No.1. Today, foundation timbers preserved under the water on the river bed are evidence of the structure that provided a source of water to the Canal.
● Three miles west on the Hoosier Heartland Corridor U.S. 24, cross over Clear Creek at the site of a slackwater dam and a floodgate. Both were removed in 1999 to make possible the dual lane highway
● Silver Creek Arch started as a wooden structure but improved as a stone arch in the 1850s to pass Woodworth’s Creek, Also, it’s name changed to Silver Creek when legend says bandits, who stole an Indian payment annuity, were about to be captured by the authorities buried their loot in the bed of this stream.
● U.S. 24 crosses over the site of Woodworth’s Trading Post directly across from Cheesbro Lock No. 11 that raised or lowered boats 6 feet. Here is one of the exciting and entrancing sights of the Wabash River which flows as a backdrop to the arch and lock sites.
● From U.S. 24, turn south (left) on CR 1000W, that in 3/10ths of a mile joins old U.S. 24 now designated the Blue Star Highway. Turn west (right) on the Blue Star where the road nearly meets the Canal line.
● South of the highway near the Wabash River is the site of the ghost town Utica plated in 1837 and replaced nearby with the town of Belden in 1856. After railroad came, all moved east to Andrews across the river to east.
● Blue Star Highway moves traffic due west and east while the Canal line moved slightly away to the southwest.
● Head west 3 miles from CR 1000 at Blue Star Highway go to CR 400 and turn south (left) across the rail tracks and follow Old Indiana 24 as it turns to the west. Shortly, pass near Curley Hayes Lock No. 13 still standing behind a house that has used the lock chamber as a trash dump for years. Once this noble structure raised and lowered Canal packets and barges a full 7 feet yet survives - partially because it is constructed of cut stone.
[If by tour bus. From the intersection of CR 440 East continue west along the Blue Star. At CR 400 East look to the north (right) 3/10ths of a mile is St. Patrick’s Cemetery a burial site for Canal workers. Ahead on Blue Star 1/4 th mile cross over Lagro Creek. Immediately turn south on Canal Street pass under the rail trestle’s 14-feet clearance and proceed approximately one block to Washington Street.]
● Enter Lagro a town platted in May 1834 by General John Tipton. Originally the Miami village on the north bank of the river and across from the mouth of the Salamonie granted to Chief “Le Gros” hence the name Lagro. His house stood at the site of present-day American Legion Post 248. Lagro served as a Toll Collection station site. Fort Wayne is the next Collection Station to the east and Logansport to the West.
● Eventually the Salamonie Trail is planned to extend to Lagro from Montpelier, Indiana.
● Cross over Lagro Creek and make the turn into Kerr Lock Park on the south side of the road.
Historical Marker notes that Charles Nottingham gave the site to the town and its importance to the local economy.
Kerr Lock can be visited walking through an actual cut stone lock that lifted or lowered boats 6 feet. It was in 1837 when Captain Dana Columbia guided the Indiana and the first boat to arrive in Lagro.
● Travel 2 blocks west on Washington Street and turn south (left) on Spencer Street to Basin Street and turn west (right). Now atop the old canal towpath, a few feet west is Ditton Lock No. 15. It was directly in front of the extant Interurban Station.
● Wabash Dam No. 3. once located across the Wabash River behind the present-day Interurban Station was a 280 feet long and 7 feet high structure. Water collected by the dam entered the Canal through a short feeder a few yards west of the highway bridge that crosses the river.
[Extended Tour: To see Hanging Rock cross the Wabash River bridge south on Indiana 524 follow and as turns to left, but stay straight ahead east when 524 turns to the south (right). Cross over the Salamonie River Bridge to Hanging Rock and watch for the outcropping marked with as an ACRES site since 1962. Also U.S. Department of Interior designated Hanging Rock and Wabash Reef as National Registered Natural Landmarks. A famous landmark standing nearly 100 feet higher than the river, it once served as a meeting place for British General Henry the “hair buyer” Hamilton.
In 1778, Hamilton passed this way with 171 British troops and 350 Indians with 40 boats to retake Fort Sackville at Vincennes. It has been depicted worldwide in textbooks as a prime example of an exhumed reef that has been sliced in half by stream erosion.]
● Heading west on Basin Street at the north end of the Wabash River bridge the towpath can be seen extending as an unimproved dirt road behind houses along river. There is no outlet.
● At Basin Street and the Wabash River bridge, turn north (right) go one block and turn left on Washington.
● St. Patrick Catholic Church built by Irish canal laborers in 1838, and the original steps to the church can be seen. The current church building is the second one dedicated in 1870 and today serves as an oratory. In front of the newer church structure is an:
Historical Marker that tells of the Irish who built the original church during the years of Canal construction.
● Continue 3 blocks and turn north (right) on Buchanan Street one block to the stop at Main Street.
● Head west on Main Street that in a block and a half becomes Lagro Road.
● On Lagro Road, 1-1/ 2 half miles west of Lagro is Enyert Creek.
● Irish War Battlefield took place about 100-yards west of Enyert Creek. Here hundreds of Irish in two factions called, the “Corkonians” and the “Fardowners” came to do battle on the anniversary of the July 1690 Battle of Boyne that pitted the British and Irish led by James II against England’s William II. Or was it a labor benefits issue when the “Corkonians” found that the “Fardowners” were getting more jiggers of whiskey to ward off the fever. The two factions came together in July of 1835 and if not interfered by militia forces, a bloody battle may have erupted. One hundred insurgents were arrested and their leaders headed on foot to Logansport to the Michigan Road for Indianapolis on July. No historical marker tells this story that made news throughout the country.
● Lagro Road parallels the Canal route and the towpath is marked with utility poles and lines leading to the City of Wabash. At the city limits, Lagro Road becomes East Hill Street and turns to the southwest (left). After one mile, East Hill Street turns west (right) at Hanna Park.
● Continue 1 block to North East Street and turn south (left) on North East Street and enter a steep switch back. Proceed down the bluff and overlook Paradise Spring Treaty Ground Park.
[If by tour bus. Because of a 10 Ton Limit on the switchback road, after passing Hanna Park go 2 blocks to Allen Street. Turn south (left) and proceed to East Market Street. Paradise Spring Treaty Ground Park is on the southeast corner and marked with a State format Historical Marker. Turn west (right) on Market Street.]
● Paradise Spring Treaty was important for Indiana’s Internal Improvements because without the Miami and Potawatomi peoples’ agreement the Canal could not proceed nor could the Michigan Road through the north center of the State. A marker in the Park does not mention the treaty’s affect on transportation.
Historical Marker gives the name “Treaty Ground Kin Com A Ong Spring between the US and the Miami held on October 23, 1826.
It is important to note that this marker originally sat a few yards north of its present position near the spring but has been moved to be more accessible to visitors.
● Follow Market Street west from the park leads to the Wabash County History Museum. Continuing on Market Street, turn south (left) at the stoplight on Wabash Street and go one block through the intersection of Canal Street and at the half block point, look to the west (right) at the high limestone foundations of the buildings once known as Boat Row under the buildings that once lined the canal. Here boats lined up for loading and unloading and it is said that cargo was moved through underground tunnels to merchants in town. Some tunnels remain under the sidewalks today. Under the one of the building on Boat Row is the grave and marker of a 3-hours old baby who was born and died on a Canal boat entering from the east. :
● The railroad track marks the Canal towpath, however, to follow the tour continue to Water Street, turn west (right) go 2 blocks to Cass Street and turn north (right).
● At 1/ 2 block Cass Street crosses a rail line marking the canal line. To the east of Cass Street was Lock 16 called Cissna Mill Lock also known as Mill Locks or Hipskind Lock. It is also described as the lock under the Plain Dealer newspaper building’s shipping dock.
● A lock tumble or water bypass powered the Thompson Flour Mill near the intersection of Miami and Canal streets. It was built by Sanford Honeywell who came to town in 1843 and became the father of Mark Honeywell founder of the multi-national Honeywell Corp. Honeywell Center is across the street to the northwest.
● Drive North on Cass Street 3 blocks turn west on Hill Street. The Dr. James Ford House Museum is on the south east corner across from the Carnegie Library. Ford was a doctor, architect, writer Civil War surgeon and his house is replicated as it was in 1875.
● West Hill Street parallels the canal line some distance south until traveling 9 blocks where Hill Street joins Mill Street. Continue west on Mill Street for one and one half miles over a railroad crossing to the junction of Old U.S. 24
[Extended Tour: To see The Rock turn to the northeast on Old U.S. 24 and see two buildings once a lumber retailer and on its west side is the largest known glacier erratic to be studied. Chiseled in it are the measurements 15’ x 18’ x 10.’ A great boulder, it is a pudding stone composed of irregular and angular lumps of granite, gneiss and sienite and the largest seen in the state.]
● Canal line passed the backside of Wabash Alloys and a few hundred yards to the west was once a floodgate to release excess canal water. Today, the artifact has been buried it under a high mound of fill material.
● West on Old U.S. 24 at the junction of CR 530 West and marks the Stearns Fisher House which is 2 miles to the south and faces the Canal. The General Superintendent of the Canal was assigned resident engineer for the line between Wabash to west of Peru. Before he died in 1877, Fisher served as a State legislator in the 1860-61 Session and again in 1868. The quarry east of the Greek Revival House is believed to be the source for the limestone to build the house.
● Old U.S. 24 next takes a turn to the southwest and crosses over the rail line. At the south edge of the bridge to the east is the remnants of the quarry for limestone used to construct Lock No. 17 Fisher Lock, which raised or lowered boats 6 feet. Several yards to the south is the site of the lock which along with a stone quarry, was covered over by an earthen ramp constructed for the highway.
● Old U.S. 24 descends down a sweeping turn to the west (right) offering a broad vista of the river valley as it follows nearly on top of the Canal towpath. To the south (left) near the river stood Boyd Park an entertainment park was intended to promote the use of electric trolleys much like Fort Wayne’s Robison Park near the guard lock on the Saint Joseph River Dam that made possible the first water for the Canal.
● Continue west on Wabash Road to Rich Valley: The canal was along the north side of the old highway.
● Rich Valley’s history extends back to the Treaty of 1818 when a reserve of land was granted to the Miami. It extended 30-miles along the south side of the Wabash from between Salamonie River to the mouth of the Eel River. It was a 30 mile square to the south. A mill for the Miami was erected and a miller assigned to assist them. Jonathan Keller came in 1831 and later to the present site of Rich Valley where he built a home. It became a stop on the canal then on the railroad. John Hubbard and wife accepted as boarders of Aaron French, his wife and 5 kids. French family disappeared and Hubbard left in middle of night was suspected. The French family remains were found buried in shallow graves under the house.
● Continue west on Old U.S. 24 or Wabash Road to Omar Cole Landing: Here is a “transportation park” where first the river trail, the canal, the railroad, traction line and highway all squeezed between the river and the high bluffs suggest how important this place has been to the economic development of the region. Omar Cole made a fortune in the gold rush selling “water and supplies” then returned to Peru in 1867 where he opened the Peru Brewery. He was the grandfather of Cole Porter.
● Wabash Road generally rests atop the Canal channel and/or the towpath.
● Turn south onto PawPaw Road, which follows the canal towpath, and near here is the site of Lock No. 18 where boats were raised or lowered 6 feet.
● Across the Wabash River is the mouth of Mississinewa River. To the east of the Mississinewa stood Chief Godfrey’s Mount Pleasant Home and its river landing dock which held Godfrey’s promised of a $500 bonus to any steamboat captain who could reach his Wabash landing. In fact, the money was collected by the steamer Science in June 1835.
● PawPaw rejoins Wabash Road about 2 3/ 4 miles west. In a “U” turn maneuver, turn to the north (right) onto Wabash Road then to the west (left) then immediately turn south onto East Street and go 2 blocks where the road makes a turn to the west (right) and becomes East Canal Street.
● Here on East Canal Street the tour again parallels the canal towpath. ● (Lock No. 19 would have been on a line across from Smith Street if it were to be extended and intersect East Canal Street.)
● Keep on Canal Street heading west to Benton Street. Look south and view the site of Lock No.20 “Buttermilk” lock whose name recalls the custom of boat passengers enjoying cool buttermilk offered by a young milk maiden. She was Rachael Henton who became the wife of James Omar Cole. Their daughter Kate Cole married Samuel Porter who in turn became the parents of Cole Porter.
Here in Peru, Wabash Dam No. 3 was constructed to be 11 feet high and 400 feet across. It use water from the river supplied through a feeder to a guard lock on into the main line. It made possible water power that was leased to entrepreneurs who leased the water to power their mills.
[Extended Tour: Across the Wabash River are several interesting sites: Osage Village; home of Frances Slocum (1773 – 1847) also known as Maconaquah “Little Bear Woman.” She had been taken from her Quaker home at Wilkes Barre, Pa., in 1778 by raiding Indian party brought to this area. She married She-po-co-nah and lived near Kekionga (Fort Wayne) and later at Osage Village. Also see: the Seven Pillars formed by river erosion; connect with the Francis Slocum Trail; pass the summer home of Cole Porter’s grandmother’s Old Fashioned Garden; Westley Farm Home of Cole’s mother and father and site of Cole Porter Festival and the famous Peru Circus Museum.]
● On Canal Street at the Huntington Street intersection, look 2 streets to the north (right) and see historic Cole Porter home. Continue westbound approaching Broadway and pass the remnants of a Canal era grain elevator dismantled to only one first floor in 2006 .
● Behind the grain elevator is a renovated Toll House still standing that was originally built for collecting tolls for crossing the bridge over the Wabash.
● Crossing over Broadway go 5 blocks distance to Lafayette Street and notice that the next 4 blocks to Holman Street is the original space that once constituted east-west boundaries of the town of Miamisport laid out in 1829. An alternative idea for a town back to the east was more successful when favorable land deals were offered and the city of Peru was established even winning the status of county seat.
● All the length of West Canal Street is virtually on top of the old Canal channel and/or its berm bank.
● Ahead west on Canal Street 3 blocks to Chestnut Street and turn north (right) and proceed 2 blocks and turn west (left) Business U.S. 24
● From Chestnut go 6/10 ths of a mile passing through the stop light at the junction of U.S. 31 Business Route South, proceed west to South Kelly Street.
● Go south (left) on South Kelly Street to West Canal Street turn west (right) and continue 3/10 ths of a mile at which point the road becomes Old Stone Road. Continue west passing under U.S. 31 overhead bridge, on past the Old Stone House. Here an…
Historical Marker (removed and may not be replaced) described the Stone structure as the only two-story dwelling between Fort Wayne and Logansport when built about 1838. It also mentioned erroneously that it was the lockmaster’s home. However, the place may have served as a station on the Underground Railroad prior to 1860 but evidence of such sites is difficult to find.
● Old Stone Road to the west eventually turns sharply to the north. At the turn, to the southwest is a passing glimpse of Prairie Creek Stone Arch that recently was compromised when a creek dredging crew upended several of the arch’s foundation timbers.
● Old Stone Road turns again to the west (left) crossing Prairie Creek bridge and is within a mile an old interurban electric traction line generation station building that can be seen near the river. Covered by a crop field today, Miller’s Lock raised and/or lowered boats 8 feet at this point after it was built in 1837.
● At the Miami Cass County line Old Stone Road which becomes Lewisburg Road. Moving westward along Lewisburg Road [on the north side of the Wabash River] where the canal bed can be seen in many places.
● Follow Lewisburg Road west and turn north (right) on to CR S 850 East, cross over U.S. 24 Heartland Corridor to Old U.S. 24 now Logansport Road.
[Extended Tour: follow Lewisburg Road west (right) on into the old Canal town of Lewisburg. Once in Lewisburg notice that the Wabash River Bridge ahead is closed to traffic. Turn west on West Cole Lane, which is on the canal towpath and the location of Lock No. 22; Continue under the Heartland Corridor, turn back north up a switchback, pass by a waterfall view approximately 3/10ths of a mile and return to the Logansport Road. Be aware that his is rough traveling and the road may be closed in places.]
● On the Logansport Road go west to Potawatomi Point Road and turn south (left).
● Potawatomi Point Road crosses a railroad track, which is approximates the old canal line, and shortly makes a turn west and as Potawatomi Road follows the north side of the Wabash River. In several places the road is approximately the old towpath route to Logansport’s Eighteenth Street. At 2 1/ 2 miles Potawatomi Road becomes Dykeman for 1 block before meeting Eighteenth Street.
● Turn north (right) on Eighteenth Street across the railroad tracks continue to Jefferson Street and turn west (left) and join Erie Avenue.
Erie Avenue lies on the original canal route. Pass Ninth Street Cemetery; St. Vincent’s Church built by the canal laborers; and an extant canal warehouse at Erie and King streets Go 1/ 2 block and cross the site of “Lock Mills” No. 24. Just beyond the lock site was the terminus of canal construction in September 1838 and a large turnaround basin was put in place at about Fifth Street and Erie Avenue.
● Turn north (right) on Fifth Street, which was Logansport’s Landing, and the Canal Collection tollhouse that stood at present-day Fifth and Market streets. The Canal opening celebration took place here in July 1839.
● Proceed north, cross over Broadway, pass an old warehouse on the west (left), go over North Street and here see an…
Historical Marker sites the Canal passage through the city and notes that to the north across High Street, the Canal crossed the Eel River on an aqueduct. Eel River Aqueduct No. 5 was a wooden structure 200 feet in length and the south abutment is in place today along with pier foundations in the river.
● Because there is no road bridge at the Canal aqueduct site to cross the Eel River, turn east (right) from Fifth Street at High Street and go one block to Sixth Street.
● Turn north (left) over Eel River Bridge. Just across the river bridge is Linden Avenue that once served as the Michigan Road and crossed the canal near here. Some historians believe this was a likely Underground Rail Road trace used by fugitives from slavery before emancipation.
● Proceed to the second intersection and turn west (left) on to Miami Street.
● Here is the site of old West Logan, and it is where a large boat turn around basin was once excavated.
● At North Pearl Street turn north (right) and proceed to Ottawa Street turn north (right) just east of where it meets North Pearl Street. Cross the railroad line and turn west (left) on to Water Street at Third Street. Water Street is approximately on the canal towpath.
● Follow Water Street westbound 7/ 10ths of a mile at which point the road’s name changes to West Delaware Road. Go 1 half mile to Kiesling Road.
● Turn south (left) onto Kiesling Road. At 1/4th mile the road crosses a creek which is the path of the old canal line. Continue south to U.S. 24.
● Turn west (right) on U.S. 24, pass under U.S. 35 bridge and continue west.
● Enter Fitches Glen or “Chapultapec.” In the woods on the right of U.S. 24 is much towpath remaining some with water as a reminder of the Canal..
[Extended Tour: Although inaccessible, 3/10ths of mile on the left in a wooded area, is the grave of Joseph Barron interpreter to William Henry Harrison.
● Continuing west on U.S. 24 cross Farlow’s Run and see the Canal Boatman’s Cabin remnants of a limestone building on the east bank and begin to notice the water standing in the basin of the canal to the west.
[Extended Tour: To the south (left) see the remains of Old U.S. 24 that is between the current highway and the railroad elevation embankment. This abandoned highway has a pavement under the trees and brush and extends one mile could be made to return to present-day U.S. 24 at the Georgetown Road railroad.]
● Continuing, west on U.S. 24 from Farlow’s Run through this section is the site of the ill-fated Kentucky that in 1844 was lost due to flooding conditions. It tore through the towpath and three persons lost their lives in the accident.
● Cross Cottonwood Creek and sometimes view an extant stone arch that is partially preserved under a crop field to the north (right).
● Continue west on U.S. 24 and turn south (left) into France Park where the Canal channel and towpath are still in evidence. (Note: There is a small entrance fee to enter the park.) Cass County France Park, once known as Georgetown Quarry, first supplied suitable building stone for Canal structures.
● Leaving the Park, turn west (left) on CR 50 S to CR 600 W and go south (left) heading toward the Wabash River. On CR 600 W cross the Canal route at what appears to be a small creek. Continue on to Georgetown Road.
● Turn west (right) on Georgetown Road passing through the Canal town of Georgetown at the Wabash River Bridge, and proceed to the junction of CR 150. On the southeast quadrant is the Cicott’s Mill property and the site of the largest Red Oak tree in Indiana; 113 feet tall with circumference of 17 feet it has a crown spread of 371.5 feet
● Here at CR 150 turn north (right) go 3/10 ths of a mile to Lockport Road. CR 150 crosses over Crooked Creek that once shared space with the canal.
● Proceed to the west on Lockport Road to Meridian Road, which marks the boundary of Cass and Carroll counties.
● Turn south (left) on Meridian and join Carroll County’s Towpath Road.
[If by Bus Tour: because of bridges near Lockport with 10 tons limit, specifications, depart the Canal route and detour through Burrows, Indiana, on Indiana Highway 25. It can be traced by crossing the Wabash River to South River road turn to the west (right) off bridge. This becomes South CR 675 West. Cross West CR 325 South. Pass over West CR 400 South on left and proceed ahead to a natural right hand turn which becomes CR 425 South. Now enter Carroll County. Make a sharp turn again to south the road becomes South CR 700 West. Cross intersection of CR 500 South (to the right but E 1000 N to the left) and road changes from CR 700 West to North CR 100 East and on to Highway 25. Turn right Pass through towns on to Delphi where the Canal route.
● Towpath Road takes its name from its location atop the Canal channel and towpath making the drive a near-Canal boat ride experience.
● During the years that the Canal was being constructed, the Potawatomi of the Wabash were removed from Indiana passing along this route. An Historic Marker inscription states: that during September 1838, some 900 Potawatomi camped near this site on the “Potawatomi Trail of Death” forced removal from Indiana to Kansas. Today the route is commemorated with a marked trail and the Wabash Erie Trail converges with it along the Wabash from Logansport to Carrollton.
● Continuing west on Towpath Road enter Lockport and the widely acclaimed Burnett’s Creek Arch, which after 160 years continues to be used to pass traffic over the stream.
● Across the road from the Arch is Lock No. 28 that once raised and/or lowered boats 10 feet.
● At the Canal town of Lockport the road turns first to the north (right) then to the west (left) and marked Towpath Road.
● After making the jog in the road look to the south (left) to see Burris House.
Listed on the Register of Historic Places, this a two-story structure inn catered to Canal travelers and faced Lock No. 29 that raised and/or lowered boats 9-1/2 feet.
● About 2 3/10 ths miles, the Towpath Road makes another turn to the south (left) and after 2/10 ths of a mile bends to the west (right) on to CR W 900 N. To the north (right) lies what remains of the old Canal town of New Franklin now marked by a farm house and barn and was once the site of Lock No. 30. In its day, New Franklin had a hotel, dance hall and tavern all built within a three street wide plat.
● Shortly CR W 900 N comes to a “T” at which a left turn to the west (left) puts the tour back on to Towpath Road
● Continue passing through Conner Reserve the land given to William, Henry and James Conner for their assistance in removing the Potawatomi people after the 1826 Treaty of Paradise Spring agreement.
● After having made the turn left on to Towpath Road go one half mile and cross Rattlesnake Creek. Here was the Canal grain shipping center known as Rattlesnake Creek Village that once had a busy sawmill and a warehouses.
● Keep on Towpath Road traveling in a southwesterly direction and at about 2 miles is the junction of Peterson Hill. This is CR N 700 W and the road that climbs out of the valley. It may be very near the site where the Potawatomi Trail of Death followed on its westward march. This too marks the point at which the Towpath Road becomes Carrollton Road and heads southwest toward the river crossing at the one time Canal town of Carrollton. Near the intersection of Peterson Hill is the site of Lock No. 31, where boats were raised and/or lowered 8 feet near the site of what was once the Speece Warehouse.
● Go around a sharp curve approaching Carrollton Bridge and the site of Lock No. 32, which is supported with Historical Markers.
Historical Marker describes the town of Carrollton on the Wabash, Lock 32 that passed boats into the river on a slackwater lake formed by the great dam at Pittsburg 5 miles downstream. Further it tells of the animals that carried the boat’s towline across a covered bridge to a towpath on the south side of the river. Also, the marker mentions the Mentzer Tavern and the Speece Brothers Warehouse, and the trail to Fort Dearborn one half mile east.
Additional historical markers have been placed here that detail how the towing path bridge served canal traffic as well as Mentzer Tavern a popular stopping off place for boat travelers. A short trail passing under the present-day road bridge offers a short walking trail through the archaeological remnants of Lock No. 32.
● After the animals crossed the bridge toting a tram car attached to the boat, some times helped by poling across the river, they were re-hitched from tram car directly to the boat. This covered bridge was 500 feet long with one span used for a draw. The river here was like a lake since it was a slackwater created by Indiana’s longest dam at the time measuring 500 feet wide at Pittsburg about 5 miles downstream.
● On the south side of the river, the towpath along the bank of the river can be identified in several places. Three miles downstream was once a Guard Lock and the impetus for the settlement of the town of Paragon. The site is visible from the river because no roads go near the one time Canal village.
● Traveling south for 3 miles on Carrollton Road the roadway comes close to the town of Paragon but viewed best from the river. It is off to the west (right) at a bend in the river where the town site is about 2/10 ths of a mile from Carrollton Road.
● In another mile Carrollton Road becomes Wilson Street in Delphi and at the intersection of Adams Street turn west (right) and proceed 3 blocks to Washington.
At Washington turn north (right) go two blocks crossing over the Canal and turn left into Canal Park.
[Extended Tour: Wabash & Erie Canal Park. Here are walking trails that trace the towpath, an Interpretative Center that focuses on the history of the Wabash & Erie Canal in depth, an Archive Center, as well as a Community Center. Also, here is the historic Case House, Bowen Cabin and the dock to board a “canal boat” ride on the watered Canal. Plan to spend a few hours.]
● Departing Wabash & Erie Canal Park, return to Washington Street and turn south (right) and drive to the stop light at Indiana Highway 25. On the southeast corner the Carroll County Courthouse square houses the Historical Society’s museum and a worthwhile visiting stop.
● Turn west (right) on to Ind. 25.
● On the west side of Delphi, highway Ind. 25 turns to the south and U.S. Highway 421 splits to the north.
[Extended tour: travel north on U.S. 421 go two blocks distance to West Franklin Street that becomes West Bicycle Bridge Road. The bridge crosses the Canal and points the way to the towpath trail that is accessible to the public.
An Historical Marker mentions some of the area’s Canal reminders. On the walking trail is the site of Lock No. 33, the Canal Slip that gave boats access into the Delphi commercial area and an historic bridge preserved that crosses the Canal.
From north on U.S. 421, continuing across the Wabash River and turn east (right) on CR 900 W and proceed into the Canal town of Pittsburg.
An Historical Marker tells to story of the Wabash River dam built here to provide a backwater for canal boats to cross the river 5 miles upstream.
Returning to U.S. 421 south across the river to West Franklin Street, approximately 1 1/2 miles west on Bicycle Bridge Road is the Samuel G. Greenup homestead. A Canal contractor, Samuel Greenup, 1818 – 1897, participated in building the Wabash Dam No. 4 at Pittsburg. He also took contracts to build the first canal bridge and laying Canal lock flooring. Greenup built the first flatboats for a Delphi to New Orleans route, the first Carroll County Courthouse as well as various warehouses and barns. In later years, he turned his energies to agriculture and community development serving as commissioner and township trustee. He never married and died October 16, 1897.]
● If electing not to travel north on the U.S. 421 extended tour, turn south (left) on Ind. 25. The Wabash River is to the west (right) and generally the Canal line rests near the river’s bank.
● At 3/ 4 of a mile crossing over of Deer Creek road bridge, watch for Trail Head Park on the west (right). Here parking space is provided for any one wishing to experience the Trails of Delphi. A walking suspension bridge over Deer Creek reaches walking paths that follow either the Canal Towpath past the site of Lock No. 33, or on an old Interurban traction rail bed.
● From Trail Head Park, less than 2/10 ths of a mile is a second entrance way to a parking area and a walking path west at 300 yards offering an overview of the mouth of Deer Creek at the Wabash River. Near this confluence was the one-time site of the Deer Creek slackwater dam that horses and mules once crossed tugging at the rope that pulled canal boats.
● Retuning to Ind. 25 west, go 5 miles to the Canal town of Americus where the waterway arrived in 1841 and where portions of the abandoned Canal channel can be viewed. In another 1 and 1/ 2 miles distance the mouth of the Tippecanoe River can be seen at its mouth that empties into the Wabash River.
● Next watch for the junction of Indiana Highway 225, turn north (right) toward the river.
[Extended Tour: Across the river the road leads to Prophetstown State Park and the town of Battleground, Indiana, the National Tippecanoe Battle Ground Monument and the Battleground Museum.]
● West on Ind. 25 - after viewing the Tippecanoe River - the highway crosses Sugar Creek bridge and within 80 yards is the turn off to the right on to a portion of the Canal towpath now called Stair Road. Stair extends for a distance of 2 miles before meeting with Indiana Highway 225. If the Stair Road turn is missed, travel approximately 2 miles to the junction of Ind. 225 and turn right as described above.
● Highway 25 crosses under Interstate I 65 at about 3 miles from the junction of Ind. 225 and Ind. Go 1/ 2 mile cross over Wild Cat Creek and turn north (right) on to Conservation Club Road. Drive north 3/10 ths of a mile past the Conservation Club to the turn in the road. To the East or right is the site of the 1839 Wild Cat Creek Dam and its west abutment remnant. Conservation Club Road continues west and follows the Canal channel. However, it approaches private property and a turn back to Ind. 25 is necessary.
● Return to Ind. 25 and travel 1 mile west to the intersection of U.S. 52 and turn north (right) and proceed to Duncan Road.
● Turn south (left) on Duncan Road to its junction with 9 th Street with the old Canal line on the east side of the road.
● On 9 th Street pass by Wide Water Basin originally construction as a turn around pool for Canal boats. Along Canal Street, much of the widewater is visible.
● On Ninth Street before its passage under a railroad elevation, turn to the west (right) on to Canal Road and proceed to the Lafayette commercial area. At the Harrison Bridge complex follow Canal Road to 2nd Street.
● 2nd Street crosses a railroad and shortly becomes Wabash Avenue as it becomes Towpath Road and finally dead ends west of Lafayette.
● Return on Towpath Road since the Canal line follows the river and difficult to follow by motor vehicle to its junction with Wabash Avenue and Beck Lane and follow Beck Lane south to Elston Road and turn west on Lilly Road which becomes CR W 200 S
Ind. 25. Turn west on Ind. 25 and travel to Attica. Note: Wea Creek Aqueduct No. 7 along with Wea Lock No. 34 is to the north slightly more than one half mile but not accessible to the public.
● Go 2-1/2 miles west to CR S 500 W turn right or to the north and proceed 3.75 miles to W 75 S. Turn west on 75 and travel 2 miles. The CR 75 stops at a “T” which is CR S 700 W. Here see…
Historical Marker mentions the 1834 founding of the Wabash & Erie Canal town of Granville, Indiana. In 1850 its name was changed to Weaton after the Wea Indiana town that was once to the east. This road to the north passes the canal town of Granville and the Wabash River Bridge.
● At CR 75 W approximately 1/10th mile and before reaching the Wabash River, turn right on to CR W 75 S. This road follows the berm path of the canal line until it turns south leaving the canal trace becoming CR S 825 W.
Proceed 7/10ths mile south to the “T” intersection of CR W 200 S to South 850 West and turn south. Proceed 2/10ths mile to the “T” intersection of Burton Road turn to the right or west and proceed as Burton Road heads south west. At Turner Road turn south and proceed to Reserve Road and turn right. Turner eventually meets the Tippecanoe Fountain County line and heads south turning right becoming East Flint Road
The following route follows State, County and City roads through out the Fountain County. At places the “trail” some distance from the historic Canal route and at other times is virtually on its towpath. In many places the canal on the east side of the Wabash River is in crop fields and wood lots. Modern-day topographical maps indicate the route of the Wabash & Erie Canal from Attica to Covington.
● The Canal line is met by East Flint Road CR East 1400 North. Turn right and head into Maysville a canal town. After crossing the railroad line the name changes to East River Road which follows the historic canal channel into Attica becoming North Perry Street, to West Vine Street which turns south becoming North 3rd Street…at West Jackson Street turn right proceed one block to South Market Street and turn south or to the left and follow the canal channel one block to West Washington Street and turn back east or to the left.
Historical Markers: Attica & Covington Canal Skirmish that took place in 1846 is recalled at the site of Lock No. 35. Although heavy rains put a damper on the combatants who were in competition with one another. A second sign has to do with a widewater in the canal that served a granary and turnaround space for boats. The railroad bed adjacent to the sign indicates the old towpath.
● South Union Street is approximately a block east of the canal line as it extends south out of Attica and becomes Xavier Road gradually departing from the canal route. Take it about 2 miles to the intersection of CR West 860 North and turn right and follow it to the “T” intersection of CR North 70 West. Go south to West Covered River Bridge Road and turn right. Follow Covered River Bridge Road into the canal town of Fountain.
● Fountain Indiana, turn right on Clay Street and proceed on block to “T” turn right onto Washington Street. Turn left or south on Washington and paralleling the Canal one block to the west. Washington Street becomes Portland Arch.
● Follow Portland Arch Road 4-1/2 miles to the intersection of West Bend Cemetery Road. It becomes North Sandhill Road in about 1-½ miles as it turns to the south.
In 3 miles North Sandhill Road meets 2nd Street at a “T” intersection in Covington, turn south and follow into town and turn right at Crockett Street and proceed one block to 1st Street. Covington Lock No. 36. In about one block 1st Street turn right on to Jefferson Street and turn left on to Water Street following the Canal line 3 blocks at which point Water Street which turns to the east and ends two blocks at 3rd Street. This becomes South River Road as it departs Covington.
● South River Road parallels the Canal and passes under Interstate 74. From the Interstate, in 2.70 miles South River Road becomes Towpath Road
In another 2 miles or so Towpath Road passes the Perrysville Cut a side cut from the Canal that entered the Wabash River allowing canal boats to cross to the town of Perrysville.
● An additional 1/3 mile south is the site of Perrysville Lock No 37
● Perrysville and near the intersection of Towpath Road and Highway 32 is the approximate site of Perrysville Lock No. 37.
● Towpath Road becomes South Silver Island Road. In 1-1/7 miles the a “T” intersection with West Liberty Church shares South Silver Island Road for 2/10-ths of a mile and travels 5 miles to the Parke County line and another 2/10th of a mile into Parke County and the to the historic canal town of Lodi immediately south of the Parke County Line.
Historical Note: The Wabash & Erie Canal did not enter Warren County. However, several Williamsport citizens made important history when they made an unauthorized cut into the canal bank. Because they were separated by the Wabash River to the west they were cut off from the economic benefits that the canal promised to bring to the state. On their own volition, they decided to make a passage on the east bank of the Wabash River to the Canal. In making the cut they drained the canal level between Attica and Covington bringing canal navigation to a halt.
Historical Note: The Wabash & Erie Canal did not enter Vermillion County. However, a side cut from the Canal to the east bank of the Wabash River was constructed. Canal boat cargo could be loaded or unloaded from boats that navigated the cut into the Wabash River. Once across on the west bank of the river the town of Perrysville flourished with facilities to handle canal business. One such structure is an extant warehouse that once was on the west bank of the river and now stands on the Skinner Farm Museum & Village 3 miles west of Perrysville on SR 32. The Wabash River Bridge to Perrysville makes a convenient access to the old Wabash River town via the State Highway 32 river bridge. The site of the Perrysville cut is in proximity with Perrysville Lock No. 37 and described in the Fountain County Trail above.
The canal route follows the Wabash River on the western edge of Parke County, following roads that pass through towns such as: Waterman (Lodi), Howard, Montezuma, Alta, Armiesburg, Summit Grove, Lyford, Numa and Atherton before entering Vigo County. At places the “trail” separates some distance from the historic Canal route and at other times is virtually on its towpath. In many places the canal on the east side of the Wabash River is in crop fields and wood lots. Today, Parke County is known for its many extant covered bridges.
● Entering Parke County on Silver Island Road turn left on State Road 234 and into the town of Lodi. After traveling 1/3rd mile, SR 234 crosses the line of the Canal. Shortly, turn Right into Lodi on Market Street.
● Continue then turn Right on County Road 1240 North and cross Coal Creek. The canal was opened here in 1848 and finished through the Parke County in 1849. Coal Creek crosses the south edge of Lodi and it was here that Coal Creek Dam was erected by canal officials. It was 202 feet long and 17-1/ 2 feet high at low water. On each side of the dam guard locks were installed to protect against flooding; also a road and a 200 feet long towing path bridge was built.
● Traveling ahead, make a slight turn Right then Left through an “S” curve crossing over County Road 1200 N then turn Right on County Road 790 W.
● Make a Left on County Road 1125 N.
Historians say that the canal in Parke County was a good place to fish. In the frozen winter months, young people enjoyed ice skating on the canal that froze over more quickly than the river and stayed frozen much longer.
● Turn Right on 750 W Melon Road then Right again on County Road 700W into the canal town of Howard. This community was known first as Burtontown, then Sandtown and then Burton. Platted in 1848, it consisted of nine blocks placed west of a town named Westport but combined to become Howard. The canal is visible here on Old Ferry road 1025 N west at the bottom of the hill.
● Left on County Road 1025 N make the “S” curve at Ephlin Cemetery turn Right onto…
● Tow Path Road 550 W. This road is located on the berm or heel side of the canal channel and at about 3 miles south, the canal and towpath are visible south of the berm.
● Straight on N 550 W Old Towpath Road to 500 N. At the town of West Union the site of Lock No. 38 is to the west slightly to the north is Sugar Creek Aqueduct No. 11. Also, about 3 miles up Sugar Creek from the Wabash River a feeder dam was erected. The dam was 227 feet long and 9 feet high. It had a guard lock at the dam to protect the feeder during times of flooding
● Right on 500 N, which will join the canal road becoming 710 W. At the town of Montezuma 710 W becomes Jefferson Street.
● Right on North Street.
● Left on Water Street paralleling the canal line. Cross U.S. 36.
Historical Marker at US 36 and Crawford Street near the Wabash River bridge:
“The Wabash & Erie was the longest canal built in North America, running from Toledo to Evansville. Montezuma was the main port of Parke County. This portion was abandoned about 1865.”
● Left on Plum then Right on North Washington Street. On the right side of the street is the site of Benson’s Basin a widewater that allowed canal boats to turn around or dock away from the coming and going boat traffic.
● Left on Canal Street follows the canal route. Turn Right on McGinty Street.
● Left on Main Street.
● Right on W 40 S along the canal which turns Left on 40 W into the old canal town of Armiesburg. The town platted in 1830, received its name after William Henry Harrison’s army camped here crossed Big Raccoon Creek and camped on the march to Prophet’s town in Tippecanoe County. Later Samuel Hopkins army visited the same site as related on a marker erected on the north side of Armiesburg:
Historical Marker states that Armiesburg was “So named because armies of Gen. Wm. H. Harrison (1811) and Gen. Saml. Hopkins (1812) bivouacked nearby. A busy village during waterpower days, court was held here before the county was judicially organized.”
● Right on 600 W and cross Big Raccoon Creek: Immediately south of the creek bridge
is a turn off to the right that becomes 700 W. A short distance on 700 W an abutment of Big Raccoon Aqueduct No. 12 is visible.
Historical Marker: The famous Indian Reserve Line of 1809 which began at the mouth of Big Raccoon Creek … ended on the Ohio boundary.
● Cross over County Road 670 W and shortly to the west is the site of Lock No. 39.
● County Road 600 W joins U.S. 41 into the town of Lyford
● Right on Larking Street and pass the site of Lock No. 40 at bout 6th Street.
Left on 2nd Street the Right on 41 through the canal town of Numa and on through Atherton.
Here the canal is to the West away from the Road. However, U.S. 41 crosses Otter Creek adjacent to the canal at the site of Aqueduct No. 13 after reaching Vigo County.
Your suggestions are always welcomed to ensure greater accuracy for the best roads and byways that trace this historic waterway route.
And…Watch for additional touring directions to come that follow the Wabash Erie Canal Towpath Trail south.