Pioneer Village #ThursdayDoors

We have a new family day-trip favorite: Salem, Indiana, specifically the John Hay Center. John Hay was the private secretary of Abraham Lincoln and Secretary of State under McKinley and TR.

I took so many pictures, I’ve split them into two groups. Today, I’ll share mostly ones dealing with the Pioneer Village, outside the museum proper but still on the grounds.

The Pioneer Village was constructed between 1979 and 1986 (and is still developing, as museums do). Some of the buildings were moved intact from spots around the county (and one from nearby Scott County), some were taken apart and reassembled, some were constructed of materials taken from other period buildings, and some were rough-milled for the project.

So let’s go and — Oh, wait! A mural!

PiVilMuralThat was on a wall in a passage between downtown and the Museum/Village, sharing passage space with the police department. I particularly like the woman in the green skirt whose upper half vanishes into a window.

Okay, back to doors and entrances.


There were many entrances to the Pioneer Village.

Lots of stuff along the walk, like this medallion which used to be above the entrance of the State Bank of Salem. The President of the bank bought it in Germany because he thought it looked like his daughter. She looks like somebody you don’t want to mess with. You go, girl!PiVilMedalion

This is the same guy who bought a little inn around French Lick, where there were some mineral springs. He called his place West Baden Springs Hotel. After the hotel burned down in 1901, he rebuilt it, making it fireproof. Oh, yeah, and also FREAKIN’ AWESOME. It had the world’s largest free-span dome, right up until 1965, when Houston built the Astrodome.

West Baden under the dome.
West Baden under the dome.

Okay, so the Pioneer Village. They do a tour, and sometimes they do reinactments, but we just popped around and looked, because we wanted to save ourselves for the museum.

PiVilMarkerHere’s a gallery, because I took many pictures!

Boy, oh, boy, did we have a good time! We took Youngest Grandson, and he had a good time, too, even without video games. We talked about ’em, though. Because.

This has been part of Norm Frampton’s Thursday Doors link-up. Head on over, look at his post, click on the little blue froggy link, and visit other dooristas.

A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: Someone sees something that looks like someone it couldn’t possibly be of.



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Pioneer Village #ThursdayDoors

  1. Jane

    August 25, 2016 at 7:28am


    Time for a travel book!!
    We could go to West Baden and chill!
    And deduct the expenses from your book profits!!

    And then we could go to Space Camp! And then to London! And Paris! And Italy….

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 25, 2016 at 9:58am

      And Mars! I know how to survive, now; I read the book! All we need is a pound or two of pertaters and we’re gold!

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  2. Dan Antion

    August 25, 2016 at 7:53am

    I love visiting places like this. Thanks for taking us along Marian. I like the door to the school house the best.

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  3. Joey

    August 25, 2016 at 9:10am

    I’ve been there, but I was too young to appreciate it. I wonder if my kids are old enough to appreciate it? Probably not yet. They’d still be wowed by the dome though…

    Love that gate and arch.

    Great doors post!

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 25, 2016 at 10:01am

      Now, the dome was at West Baden. Your kids would probably appreciate Pioneer Village at Salem, Indiana more. That dome is a real trip! Nice gardens at West Baden, too.

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  4. Jesh StG

    August 25, 2016 at 2:18pm

    What a delightful village Marian! Thanks for sharing your outing with us. Am glad our schools in this time catch more daylight!

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  5. Deborah

    August 26, 2016 at 3:31pm

    A great visit through your viewfinder! I loved the inside of the school house, and have always wanted an old school desk. Maybe one day. 🙂

    Loved your reply about knowing how to survive on Mars now that you’ve read a book! Hahaha!
    I enjoyed the book btw. Haven’t seen the movie…doubt I ever will.

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 26, 2016 at 3:32pm

      I haven’t seen the movie, either, but I plan to. Probably on video, though I’d love to see it on the big screen!

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  6. Norman Frampton

    August 26, 2016 at 11:35pm

    That was a fun educational post with some lovely old doors. No about this place called French Lick…do I want to even know how it got its name? 😉

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      August 27, 2016 at 11:31am

      Heh! I have no doubt it was a salt lick. A lot of French pioneered in Indiana, maybe down from Canada? Folks settled around natural salt licks because wildlife congregated at them, making hunting a little easier. You funny guy. 😀

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply

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