Although Lew Wallace put Crawfordsville on the map with Ben-Hur, most books written in the city's literary heyday are now found only in antiquarian bookstores.
An epic tale by a Civil War general spawned a marketing frenzy that set a precedent for the commercial campaigns accompanying every blockbuster movie today.
Lewis “Lew” Wallace led troops in the battle of Shiloh, and later in defense of Cincinnati and Washington. Wallace is little remembered today for his his literary masterwork, Ben-Hur.
“Interurbans”—also called electric railways—were once the cause of a wild but short-lived mania all over America, and Indiana was the heart of the industry.