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March 24, 2018
Flourishing at 90-something
Hoosiers who have celebrated more than 90 birthdays have lived through a lot of state history. Not only have they been eyewitnesses to the great milestones of the twentieth century, many have remained hale and hearty far beyond the average American lifespan. Those who continue to enjoy an active life into their tenth decade undoubtedly have insights and advice to share with the rest of us.
To tap these insights - including what expectations to let go of and how to keep thriving mentally and physically - the format of our show will be a round-table discussion with guests in their 90s. Two of our guests have made previous appearances on Hoosier History Live to talk about the local history they have seen unfold:
For this show, our guests will share life lessons and a range of tips about how to flourish after age 90, a demographic that is growing rapidly. According to Georgia's book, the number of Americans age 90 and older has tripled in the past 30 years.
Mrs. Osili, who turns 94 next month, competes in local and national championships in the card game of bridge and has attained the title of "national life master." Her three children include Indianapolis architect and civic leader Vop Osili, who was named president of the Indianapolis City Council last month.
Georgia Buchanan's son, Bryan Hadin, was born in 1963 with special needs. For many years, he participated in various competitions with Special Olympics. Georgia is a long-time arts advocate; her career as a print and broadcast journalist included media work in Indianapolis and in Washington D.C.
Our guest Tom Ridley, who was born in 1922, lives in the Ransom Place neighborhood, not far from where he grew up. He met his late wife when they were in kindergarten; she went on to become an IPS teacher. His father-in-law was a musician in clubs on Indiana Avenue.
Contrary to prevailing stereotypes about the elderly, some of our guests are active on the Internet, continue to drive and live independently. All three are widely known for their energy and enthusiasm.
Ninety years ago, in the decade when this week's guests were born, a major landmark was being planned and built on the north side of Indianapolis. When the building opened in 1928, it was the largest structure of its kind in the entire country.
For many decades, the building was the venue for a major sports event that, beginning in 1930, was sold out for 60 consecutive years.
Question: What is the name of this landmark building?
The call-in number is (317) 788-3314. Please do not call in to the show until you hear Nelson pose the question on the air, and please do not try to win if you have won any other prize on WICR during the last two months. You must be willing to give your first name to our engineer, you must answer the question correctly on the air and you must be willing to give your mailing address to our engineer so we can mail the prize pack to you. The prize is four passes to the Indiana History Center, courtesy of the Indiana Historical Society, and two admissions to GlowGolf, courtesy of GlowGolf.
Roadtrip: Underground Railroad activity near Madison and Eagle Hollow
Guest Roadtripper, journalist, and public historian Eunice Trotter invites us to learn about Chapman Harris and underground railroad activity in Madison and Eagle Hollow, a community just east of Madison, both located along the mighty Ohio River.
Chapman Harris was a free African American who was born in Virginia and in his youth heard of Indiana as a "free land." He came to Madison by steamboat in 1839 at age 37 and worked as a Baptist minister, teamster, and farmer. Chapman Harris and his family owned land in both Madison and Eagle Hollow and lead efforts to help enslaved persons crossing the Ohio River into the free state of Indiana.
Harris was known for his imposing size and bearing; a newspaper profile written about him after the Civil War noted that "He walks among men with a natural grace and dignity inseparable from fearlessness and strength of will."
The Indiana Historical Bureau, Jefferson County Commissioners, and Visit Madison, Inc. erected a marker for Chapman Harris in 2016. The marker is located, along the Ohio River at intersection of Eagle Hollow Rd. and SR 56 (Ohio River Scenic Byway) just east of Madison.
Prizes solicited for History Mystery contest
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Nelson Price, host and historian
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March 31, 2018 - Upcoming
Women who influenced Indiana Avenue jazz
In our previous shows about the jazz history during the heyday of clubs on Indiana Avenue in Indianapolis, the spotlight mostly has been on male musicians like the late Wes Montgomery and David Baker.
As we salute Women's History Month, our focus now will be on women who influenced the great jazz musicians, but who primarily were behind the scenes as teachers and mentors during the early and mid-1900s. Nelson will be joined in studio by Aleta Hodge, author of the new book Indiana Avenue: Life and Musical Journey From 1915 to 2015 (ASH Consulting), which features profiles of the significant people and places involved in the legendary jazz created there.
Among the "hidden figures," as Aleta calls the Indianapolis female jazz musicians whom history has largely forgotten:
In addition to those historic women, we also will highlight some contemporary women who continue to make an impact on the Indiana music scene. They include Rosemarie Gore Bigbee, a veteran teacher at Broad Ripple High School whose vocal performing career ranges from opera to children's television. During the 1990s, she portrayed the character Rainbow Rosie in a series broadcast on WFYI-TV/Channel 20 in Indianapolis.
Even though the musicians who were celebrated during the Indiana Avenue jazz heyday of the 1940s and '50s tended to be male, a few female performers achieved a degree of fame. They included the popular Hampton Sisters and pianist-vocalist Flo Garvin. We have explored their careers during previous shows, including two programs in November and December 2016 with music historian David Leander Williams.
This time around, the focus primarily will be on women whose names are not as well-remembered, but whose impact was significant. Our guest Aleta Hodge grew up near Attucks and has interviewed dozens of people connected to Indiana's jazz heritage, including descendants of the musicians influenced by the historic women mentors.
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