Quick: how many facts about Fort Wayne do you know? Yes, we have a fort. Yes, we're named after General Anthony Wayne. But beyond that, many of us are scratching our heads. Here are some quick facts about Fort Wayne so that you can learn a little more about this beautiful town.
Fort Wayne Facts
1. The location for the city was chosen because of its proximity to three rivers: the Maumee, the St. Joseph, and the St. Marys. The area was the capital of the Miami tribe, and they called it Kekionga.
2. Fort Wayne was founded on October 22, 1794, when US troops captured the Wabash-Erie portage from the Miami and built a fort named for their general, "mad" Anthony Wayne.
3. By 1840, when the city was incorporated, its population was 2,000. According to 2014 census data, our population is now 258,000.
4. Fort Wayne gained its nickname "the summit city" due to its location at the highest elevation along the Wabash and Erie Canal's route.
5. By 1900, the city population surged to 50,000 due to a surge of German and Irish immigrants.
6. Fort Wayne's three rivers have flooded several times. A 1913 flood is considered the worst natural disaster in the city's history, causing seven deaths, leaving 15,000 homeless, and damaging over 5,000 buildings. The flood of 1982 brought a visit from President Ronald Reagan and is still remembered by many residents.
7. 1950 was a big year for the city. Coliseum Boulevard was built, and also the Memorial Coliseum, which was home to the NBA's Fort Wayne Pistons.
8. Fort Wayne celebrated its bicentennial in 1994.
Fort Wayne Trivia
For those of you who enjoy trivia, here are some fun facts about our city:
- Fort Wayne contains 1,301 miles of roads.
- 33,879 street lights are found on our streets.
- Fort Wayne is home to 17 banks and 18 credit unions.
- We have 15 museums to explore in town.
- Our six hospitals contain 1,463 beds.
- Fort Wayne has 86 parks.
- Fort Wayne is known as "the city of churches." How many churches do we have? 360.
- Our top three employers are Parkview Health Systems, Lutheran Health Network, and Fort Wayne Community Schools.
What facts about Fort Wayne can you add?