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Fountain County Courthouse
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History of Fountain
Births & Deaths
Listed in the Register of Membership
No. 18 F. and A.M.
This county was so called in respect to Major
Fontaine, of Kentucky, who was killed at the head of
the mounted militia, in the battle on the Maumee,
near Fort Wayne, in 1790. The surface of the county
is mostly level, though the central and southern
parts are occasionally undulating; and it is
beautifully variegated with heavy forest and rich
prairies,which later constitute about one-fourth of
the county. The soil is generally a black loam, with
a slight mixture of sand, and is very fertile,
producing excellent crops of wheat and corn. In the
southern part of the county there is a preponderance
of clay, and the soil there is consequently better
adapted to wheat and grass. There was originally an
of timber, consisting of poplar, sugar, beech,
oak, walnut and hickory.
Covington, the county seat, is a thriving
town on the Indianapolis, Bloomington and Western
Railway. Attica is another smart town in
this county. It is located on the Toledo, Wabash
and Western Railway. The county has made great
improvement during the last decade, both in the
growth of its towns and the general developments
of the farming districts. The schools are
efficient and prosperous.
Fountain County lies in the western part of the
U.S. State of Indiana on the east side of the
Wabash River. The county was officially
established in 1826 and was the 53rd in Indiana.
James Fontaine 1757-1790 was an officer who served
in American Revolutionary War and the Northern
Indian War. The name is spelled several ways,
including "Fountaine". James Fontaine is believed
to have been born in Hanover County, Virginia
in1757. At an early age he entered on a military
career, becoming a member of the first expert
rifle company raised in Buckingham District,
Virginia, for the defense of the colony in 1775.
Later this company was attached to the 2nd
Virginia Regiment, Oct 21, 1775. Served until
March 1776, near Williamgsburg, Virginia.
Fontaine moved to Kentucky, where he served as
Major in the Northwest Indiana War. In 1790 he
served under General Josiah Harmar in a march
northward from Cincinnati against the Miami, under
the leadership of Little Turtle.
Fontaine was killed on October 22, 1790 at a
battle variously known as Harmar's Defeat, Battle
of the Maumee, Battle of Kekionga, or Battle of
the Miami Towns. This occurred near where the St.
Joseph River and St. Mary's River merge to form
the Maumee River, near modern Fort Wayne, Indiana.
The Miami called it the "Battle of the Pumpkin
Fields", because, after the battle, the scalped
heads of the Americans reminded them of a pumpkin
The state of Indiana was established in 1816. The
first non-indigenous settler in the area that
became Fountain County is thought to have
been a Mr. Forbes, who arrived here in early 1823
and was soon followed by others. Fountain County
was officially created on December 30, 1825, the
act taking effect on April 1, 1826; the boundaries
of the county have not changed since that time.
The first Fountain County courthouse was a
two-story frame building constructed in Covington
in 1827; Abraham Griffin submitted the winning bid
of $335. Two years later in 1829 it was decided
that a brick building was needed, and plans were
made for a new courthouse; but then an act of the
legislature called for the county seat to be
moved. In the end it was decided that the county
seat should remain in Covington, and the brick
courthouse was completed in 1833. A third
courthouse was commissioned in 1856, and was
completed in 1857 at a cost of $33,500. The
circuit court met for the first time in the new
building in January 1860, and the building was
largely destroyed by fire the same day. Isaac
Hodgson was the architect for the rebuilt
courthouse, which was first occupied in January
1861; the total cost, including the
reconstruction, totaled $54,62. 05 The current
courthouse was built it 1936-37 at a cost of
$246,734; it replaced the previous building which
had been declared unsafe, it was constructed by
the Jacobson Brothers of Chicago; the architects
where Louis R. Johnson and Walter Scholar of
Lafayette. The courthouse walls display many
murals painted by Eugene Francis Savage and others
from 1937 to 1940; the murals cover over 2,500
square feet of wall space and depict the
settlement of western Indiana.
Construction on the Wabash and Erie Canal began in
1832 and worked southwest, it reached Lafayette in
1842. In 1846 it reached Covington, and by 1847
traffic had begun to flow through the county via
the canal. Although the coming of the county's
first railroad a decade later heralded the end of
the canal's usefulness, it wasn't until 1875 that
the last canal boat passed through Covington.
Logan - Davis - Shawnee - Richland - Troy - Van
Buren - Wabash - Cain - Fultron - Mill Creek -
CITIES AND TOWNS
Attica - Covington - Hillsboro - Kingman -
Mellott - Newtown - Veedersburg - Wallace
Cates - Coal Creek - Fountain - Harveysburg -
Independence - Rob Roy - Silverwood - Steam
Corner - Stone Bluff - Yeddo
County Seat: Covington
Year Organized: 1826
Square Miles: 397.88
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Where to find information in Fountain County,
|West Central Indiana Genealogy Research
405 North Mill Street, P.O. Box 273
Veedersburg, Indiana 47987-0273
|Covington-Veedersburg Public Library
622 Fifth Street
Covington, IN 47932
|Fountain County Clerk
P.O. Box 183
Covington, IN 47932
|Fountain-Warren County Health Department
1138 Sycamore St.
Attica, IN 47918
(birth & death)
403 S. Brady St.
Attica, IN 47918
P.O. Box 24
Attica, IN 47918
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