Our County History
by County Historian Marion W. Coplen

Recently Delmar Wilson, of East Fort Wayne street brought us an Indiana atlas published in 1876. This 458 page volume contains a wealth of information including a detailed map of every county in the state. These maps show the location of churches, schools, cemeteries, farmhouses, mills, swamp land, as well as railroads, roads, lakes, creeks, cities and towns.

The map of Kosciusko county brings out many interesting things about our county. One looks in vain for the Nickel Plate railroad,, or the towns of Mentone, Sidney, and Winona Lake. A considerable amount of swamp land is shown, particularly in the northern and western parts of the county. At numerous places throughout the county one discovers a school, church and cemetery bunched together in what was at that time a community center. There are about 50 mills indicated on the map; it does not specify which were saw mills and which were grist mills. Some of these mills were along such streams as Trimble Creek, Turkey Creek, Deeds Creek, and the Tippecanoe River. A number of them were located away from streams and were undoubtedly powered by steam.

This atlas also includes maps of Warsaw, Pierceton and Syracuse. Warsaw at that time was virtually two cities with a tamarack marsh in between. The main part of Warsaw was connected with East Warsaw by only one street--Ft. Wayne. Maple avenue at that time was named Cass street, probably after the Michigan politician, Lewis Cass. East Ward school was located at the Southwest corner of Scott and Ft. Wayne streets, just north of the present site. West Ward school was at its present location, but the only approach was by way of Main street, as Union street did not extend south of Ft. Wayne street. The present court house had not yet been built; this map shows two buildings on the court house square. In 1876 Warsaw was divided into three wards. All the area west of Buffalo streets was in the Third Ward. The area north of Center and east of Buffalo was in the First Ward and the Second Ward included the area south of Center and east of Buffalo. Oakwood cemetery is shown on this map of Warsaw, having just been purchased by the city the year before.

We wish to thank Mr. Wilson for making this atlas available for us.

Warsaw Times-Union Sat. Oct. 17, 1953