I usually photograph state lines on my road trips. As I began to explore US 50 across Indiana I was hoping to capture a Welcome to Indiana sign as the road crossed in from Ohio. What I found was far better than any old sign.
This sandstone monument is right on the state line. Back in 1837 there was some doubt as to where the line actually lay near the Ohio River, so Indiana and Ohio jointly ordered a new survey. The line freshly reestablished, the states had this monument created and placed on the line along this road that one day would become US 50, but was probably known as the Louisville Pike then.
Even though this column is round, words are engraved on all four “sides.” The state names are engraved to face the appropriate directions.
The north side tells that the column was “Erected Nov. 27th, 1838.” The south side tells the column’s story: “State Line as resurveyed under a joint resolution passed by Indiana on the 27th January and by Ohio on the 10th March 1837.”
It was challenging to find any information about this column on the Internet. Apparently, Ohio and Michigan had a serious disagreement about their border in 1835. There’s a ton of information about it on the Net, and sorting through it all was tedious until I got wise and told Google not to return any results that include the word Michigan. And then there it was, the one lone page on the entire Internet about this column. (I guess this just became the second page about it.) That page says that in 2001, the monument was found uprooted, which is pretty remarkable when you consider that it is nine feet tall and weighs 5,000 pounds.
I photographed US 50 where it entered Illinois last year. There’s a great monument to Abraham Lincoln there. Check it out!
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