Youth theater group to perform play at Conner Prairie on 5 dates

Staff Report
Young actors with Asante Children’s Theatre will stage five performances of a full-length play beginning July 27 at Conner Prairie.

“More Light: Douglass Returns” written by Indiana playwright Celeste Williams was inspired by the historic return to Indiana by prominent American abolitionist, writer and speaker Frederick Douglass. Continue reading

Experience area close-up: 1816 Lenape Indian Camp

Interpreter Mike Pace works with a young girl, teaching her how to throw an authentic tomahawk inside 1816 Lenape Indian Camp at Conner Prairie.

By Hannah Kiefer
Last but not least in our experience area close-up series, we visit 1816 Lenape Indian Camp, the earliest time period that our visitors get to explore when they visit Conner Prairie.

Lenape Indian Camp looks at the relationship between white settlers in Indiana in the early 19th century and the Lenape Indians, also known as the Delaware Indians. Because Indiana became a state in 1816, the camp invites visitors to explore changes that statehood presented to the inhabitants of the land at that time. The experience area opened in the mid-2000s. Continue reading

Experience area close-up: 1859 Balloon Voyage

Our 1859 Balloon Voyage opened in 2009, and it tells the story of the first airmail delivery in the U.S., which happened in Lafayette, Ind. 

By Hannah Kiefer
For the next two weeks, we’re taking our blog to new heights as we explore another experience area: 1859 Balloon Voyage.

The experience opened in 2009. It tells the story of John Wise, a balloonist who carried out the first airmail delivery in the U.S. back in 1859. The feat occurred in Lafayette, Ind.

Wise was an enthusiastic balloonist and he flew various balloons just about every season for decades. He was especially interested in the “rivers of wind,” or a rudimentary concept similar to the jet stream that we know today. Wise never flew high enough to access the jet stream, though; his balloons were not built for such heights. But his ideas weren’t entirely incorrect when it came to how to navigate the wind above the ground. Continue reading

About 850 animal, plant species call Conner Prairie home

About 850 different species of amphibians, reptiles, fish, insects, plants and birds call Conner Prairie home.

By Hannah Kiefer
When visitors think of Conner Prairie, they may often think of the characters who reside in 1836 Prairietown or who entertain in our 1863 Civil War Journey and Lenape Indian Camp. But, there’s a much more wild set of residents on our grounds: The wildlife.

Conner Prairie has more than 1,100 acres of land and most of that is untouched, so there’s quite a bit of wild space. Couple that with the fact that Conner Prairie is surrounded by roads and suburban neighborhoods and much wildlife in the area finds refuge on our property. This can include everything from mammals and birds to amphibians and reptiles.

Our grounds provide a variety of different environments, thanks to the White River, forested areas and the prairie, just to name a few features. Continue reading

Experience area close-up: Animal Encounters

Animal Encounters opened at Conner Prairie in 2007. This area allows guests to get up-close with rare breeds and learn about the role these animals played in 19th-century Indiana. 

By Hannah Kiefer
For the next few weeks we’re taking a close-up look at an experience area that many of our guests know and love: Animal Encounters!

Conner Prairie has a history of agriculture. William Conner himself kept livestock and farmed the land near where Animal Encounters is today, and before Conner Prairie was a museum, we were a farm. Developed by Eli Lilly, Conner Prairie Farms began in 1934. The farm raised Percheron horses, Shorthorn cattle, Berkshire hogs, and Shropshire sheep. In the words of Lilly, “The quality of our livestock was second to none.” In 1964, Conner Prairie became a full-fledged museum.

Our Animal Encounters experience area opened in 2007 with the intent of helping to bridge the disconnect between people and agriculture that has developed in recent decades. Additionally, heritage breeds were selected to help support the goal of educating guests on what life was like in 19th-century Indiana. Continue reading