|City of Martinsville|
An aerial photograph of Martinsville in June 2006, taken looking northwest.
|Nickname(s): "Goldfish Capital of the World"|
Location in the state of Indiana
|• Mayor||Shannon Kohl (R)|
|• Total||4.51 sq mi (11.68 km2)|
|• Land||4.49 sq mi (11.63 km2)|
|• Water||0.02 sq mi (0.05 km2) 0.44%|
|Elevation||604 ft (184 m)|
|• Estimate (2015)||11,831|
|• Density||2,634.3/sq mi (1,017.1/km2)|
|Time zone||EST (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||0438684|
The Morgan County courthouse, completed in 1859, features a red brick and Italianate design, and is one of very few pre-Civil War courthouses existing in Indiana. Architect Isaac Hodgson designed the courthouse, and it was built by Perry Magnus Blankenship. Hodgson designed six Indiana courthouses including Jennings County (1859), Morgan County (1857), Henry County, Bartholomew County (1871), and his largest in Marion County, in Indianapolis.
In 1899, Eugene Shireman, a Martinsville entrepreneur, turned his swamp land into fisheries and started Grassyfork Fisheries. Once dubbed the "Goldfish Capital of the World", today Martinsville has several large fisheries that sell fish to many parts of the world. Shireman's actions changed the landscape of the Martinsville area, and his fisheries can be seen today throughout Shireman subdivision. Martinsville is also home to other fisheries.
From 1888 until 1968, visitors sought out the many artesian mineral water health spas (which were called sanitariums then) of Martinsville for health benefits. Over the course of nearly 100 years, almost a dozen sanitariums were in operation for various periods of time, including the first black spa in Martinsville.
Albert Merritt (1871–1958), beloved founder of the Boy's Club in Martinsville, born near Bowling Green, was the son of former slaves. He came to Martinsville Mineral Springs Sanitarium in the 1890s from a job as a porter at the Sennings Hotel in Louisville, and lived at the sanitarium for the rest of his life, never marrying. He worked with the children of Martinsville for fifty years, building a clubhouse on North Marion Street. Merritt Park on the northwest end of town is named for Albert.
Visitors would travel by rail and road to bathe and refresh in the mineral springs and waters. Many luminaries visited Martinsville in the early 20th century to enjoy the mineral waters and spas for their perceived therapeutic and health restoring qualities. On top of what used to be the National Sanitarium a refurbished neon sign still displays "Martinsville City of Mineral Water" as it did before.
In 1892 the Old Hickory Furniture Company was formed. The Morgan County Public Library’s Digital Archive has a collection of photographs of Old Hickory furniture including some displays for Marshall Field & Co.
In recent years, Martinsville has an array of different businesses, with the court square district and downtown area being host to a number of locally owned restaurants, bakeries, and shops, and areas like the Grand Valley Shopping Center and Artesian Square being host to a number of restaurant chains and retail shops.
In addition, local leadership has suffered scrutinization for issues such as drinking water pollution, the local hospital's decisions, and the town debt, which increased to $27 million in 2015. Unable to make payroll, funding from the police and fire force was redirected in order to pay city employees.
The Blackstone House and Martinsville Telephone Company Building, Crawford-Gilpin House, East Washington Street Historic District, Martinsville Commercial Historic District, Martinsville High School Gymnasium, Martinsville Northside Historic District, Martinsville Sanitarium, Martinsville Vandalia Depot, Morgan County Courthouse, Morgan County Sheriff's House and Jail, and Neely House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Historically, Martinsville has been documented as a sundown town, and was the place of some racial controversies, including the 1968 murder of 20-year-old African American, Carol Jenkins, who was stabbed to death with a screwdriver while doing part-time work selling encyclopedias door-to-door.
Her murder remained unsolved for 33 years, until Kenneth Richmond was arrested for the crime. Richmond was a nearby Hendricks County resident who was passing through Martinsville on the night Jenkins was murdered. It was revealed that, following Carol's murder, Richmond laughed and said to his unknown accomplice, "She got what she deserved."
The white couple Don and Norma Neal, who called the police to try to help Carol a half-hour before she died, received harassment and death threats after it was revealed they tried to help the young woman.
In 2014, the Neals proposed a monument in Martinsville in Carol's memory. The town committee voted to put it on the town square, but the plans were scrapped after the county commissioner, Norman Voyles, said he "started getting flack" about it. The Neals are currently looking for a new location for the monument.
Martinsville still fights its reputation for racism and prejudice, though many people living there say they welcome people from all races, sexual orientations, and religions. The high school's LBGTQ club was the highest charter in 2015, and town leaders have spoken out against and enacted orders in defiance of Indiana's controversial RFRA.
Martinsville is located at (39.423339, -86.423779).
According to the 2010 census, Martinsville has a total area of 4.508 square miles (11.68 km2), of which 4.49 square miles (11.63 km2) (or 99.6%) is land and 0.018 square miles (0.05 km2) (or 0.4%) is water.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Martinsville has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.
As of the census of 2010, there were 11,828 people, 4,610 households, and 2,990 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,634.3 inhabitants per square mile (1,017.1/km2). There were 5,073 housing units at an average density of 1,129.8 per square mile (436.2/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.5% White, 0.2% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.4% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.5% from other races, and 1.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.3% of the population.
There were 4,610 households of which 33.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.0% were married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.5% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.1% were non-families. 29.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.03.
The median age in the city was 36.6 years. 25% of residents were under the age of 18; 10.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.8% were from 25 to 44; 24.4% were from 45 to 64; and 14.5% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.6% male and 51.4% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 11,698 people, 4,621 households, and 3,086 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,620.6 people per square mile (1,012.7/km²). There were 4,880 housing units at an average density of 1,093.2 per square mile (422.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 98.62% White, 0.01% African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.18% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.25% from other races, and 0.56% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.00% of the population.
There were 4,621 households out of which 32.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.8% were married couples living together, 11.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.2% were non-families. 28.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.96.
In the city the population was spread out with 25.1% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 29.3% from 25 to 44, 20.9% from 45 to 64, and 15.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 96.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.6 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $32,746, and the median income for a family was $40,304. Males had a median income of $31,215 versus $22,090 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,664. About 8.7% of families and 11.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.8% of those under age 18 and 16.4% of those age 65 or over.
- Fall Foliage Festival
- Martinsville on the Square
- Farmer's Market Day
- Morgan County Fair
- Morgan County Relay for Life
- Artie Fest
The Metropolitan School District of Martinsville administers the public schools of Martinsville. Elementary schools include Brooklyn Elementary, Centerton Elementary, Green Township Elementary, Paragon Elementary, Poston Road Elementary, Smith Elementary, and South Elementary. There are two middle schools that serve grades 6-8, Martinsville Bell-East and Martinsville West. Both feed into Martinsville High School. There is also Hammons off-campus community school. Martinsville has one private school, Tabernacle Christian School, which has classes for preschool through twelfth grade.
- Benjamin Bull, lawyer and Wisconsin State Senator
- Emmett Forrest Branch, 13th governor of Indiana
- Richard Bray, Indiana State Senator
- Glenn M. Curtis, basketball coach
- Charles E. Ford, newsreel and motion picture director
- Ira Hall, Indy car driver
- Bobby Helms, a singer/songwriter who had six gold records including "Jingle Bell Rock"
- Joe W. Kelly, United States Air Force four-star general
- Jeff Kottkamp, lieutenant governor of Florida (2007-2011)
- Paul V. McNutt, 34th governor of Indiana
- Mel Payton, former professional basketball player
- Catt Sadler, E! News anchor
- Jerry Sichting, former professional basketball player
- John R. Walsh, U.S. Congressman & Secretary of State of Indiana (1958-1960)
- John C. Wetherby, recipient of the Medal of Honor
- John Wooden, Naismith Hall of Fame college basketball player and coach
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- Grassyfork Fisheries
- "Our Town: Martinsville".
- Photographs of the sanitariums
- "Martinsville, IN : City of Mineral Water Sign".
- Old Hickory
- Staff (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- "Sundown Towns:Martinsville, Indiana". Investigation Discovery. Retrieved 2016-06-22.
- Chapman, Sandra. "Monument for Martinsville murder victim rejected". WTHR.
- Rimer, Sara. "After Arrest, Town Shamed by '68 Killing Seeks Renewal".
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- "Martinsville, Indiana Kppen Climate Classification (Weatherbase)". Weatherbase.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016.
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- "Morgan County Fair".
- "Relay For Life of Martinsville".
- "Metropolitan School District of Martinsville". Retrieved 2013.