About Lafayette, IN
Lafayette is the county seat of Tippecanoe County and is located about 60 miles northwest of Indianapolis. It is home to about 67,000 citizens. The city has two international sister cities – Longkou in China and Ōta in Japan.
Lafayette is also the sister city of West Lafayette, which is located on the other side of the Wabash River. It is home to Ivy Tech Community College and Purdue University. Much of the city’s economy is centered around the activities of Purdue University.
Famous people who have called the city home include actor and director Sidney Pollack, musicians Axl Rose and Izzy Stradlin of the rock band Gun N’ Roses, athlete Ray Ewry, and Nobel Prize winner Herbert Brown.
History of Lafayette, IN
The area was initially settled by Native Americans of the Miami nation. In 1717, Fort Ouiatenon was established by the French government three miles south of present-day Lafayette. The fort would quickly become a trade center.
Lafayette was first platted in 1825 and was named for American Revolutionary War hero General Lafayette. The city was incorporated in 1853, and the construction of the Wabash and Erie Canal in the 1840s resulted in the growth of trade in the area.
In 1859, Lafayette was the location of the first official airmail delivery in the country. In 1992, along with sister city West Lafayette, Lafayette was the first location in Indiana to be connected to the Internet.
Things to Do in Lafayette, IN
Feast of the Hunter’s Moon
The Feast of the Hunter’s Moon is held annually every October at the present-day site of Fort Ouiatenon. It is a re-enactment of the annual fall gathering between the French and Native Americans at Fort Ouiatenon in the mid-18th century. Re-enactors dress up in period costumes, sell traditional period foods, and the event also includes several historical re-enactments to educate visitors about life and culture in the 1700s.
Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art
The Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art features the largest collection of Indiana art in the world. The collection includes over 100 paintings by the Hoosier Group, the largest such collection in the world. It includes works by all five members of the group – TC Steele, Richard Gruelle, William Forsyth, J. Ottis Adams, and Otto Stark.
The museum is part of the American Alliance of Museum and is based on the private collection of museum founders Robert and Ellie Haan.
Other Things to Do
The city is home to be a bustling arts scene. Other things to do include the Art Museum of Greater Lafayette, the Lafayette Symphony Orchestra, and the Long Center for Performing Arts.
Lafayette is a great place for families and young professionals to live in. With a lower than average cost of living and proximity to major city centers like Indianapolis and Chicago, it is a good option for people looking for a quieter pace of life while remaining close to major markets.