Historic Meridian Park is a vibrant, safe neighborhood with a strong sense of community and connectivity. The social fabric of the neighborhood promotes respect for diversity, helping one another, and pride in our homes. Residents of all ages appreciate the unique aspects of living in a historic downtown community and recognize the important role they play in shaping its future.
The Historic Meridian Park neighborhood features some of Indianapolis' -- and the Midwest's -- best examples of American Arts & Crafts Architecture. Lovers of bungalows will not want to miss this district. While Meridian Park contains a noteworthy collection of American Four Square, many other styles of craftsman homes can be found including examples of Tudor Revival, Colonial Revival, Mission (Spanish) Revival, American Bungalow, English Country Manor, Neo-classical, Flemish and Italianate Revival styles. The vast majority of the homes show the influence of the Craftsman movement. Every building reflects the use of natural materials such as brick, stucco, stone, and tile, as well as emphasizes the visible structural elements such as beams, abundant windows, large overhangs and inviting front porches.
Located north of Fall Creek, Meridian Park represents the northward residential growth of the city in the early 20th century. Elias Atkins filed a University Place plat in 1890 in the area, and by 1904, other developers had subdivided the former farmland into residential lots. One principal addition was called Meridian Park.
While Meridian Park has a small number of late 19th century and some contemporary buildings, a majority of homes date from the early 20th century. Most have typical Arts & Crafts details such as overhanging eaves, knee braces, exposed rafters, and low horizontal lines. Tudor Revival, American Four-Square, Colonial Revival, and more exotic influences are evident in the design of other buildings.
The architecture demonstrates how well Indianapolis architects absorbed Arts & Crafts tenets. In 1907, Frank Bakemier built the house at 3128 North Pennsylvania Street for George and Nellie Meier, who called it “Tuckaway.” This low-slung bungalow with brown-stained wood weatherboard siding is among the better preserved Arts & Crafts homes in Indianapolis. The Meiers were as quirky as their new modern home. George was a well-known fashion designer and buyer for L.S. Ayres Department Store, and Nellie was a famous psychic whose clients included many national celebrities.
The house at 3127 North Pennsylvania was designed in 1909 by Lawrence George for Will H. Brown, vice president of the Overland Auto Company. The home’s stucco and half-timber upper story with oriel windows and simple lines reflects Arts & Crafts influence. The district also includes a residential court, called Washington Court, located in the 3200 block off Washington Boulevard. Jose-Balz Company designed and built most of the eleven bungalow, Craftsman, and American Four Square houses in this part of the district. Indianapolis has few of these Bungalow court style developments
In addition to featuring architecturally significant homes, the neighborhood was also home to several well-known architectural families: Arthur Bohn and Anton Vonnegut. Bohn was a founding partner, with Bernard Vonnegut Sr. of the firm Vonnegut and Bohn. Bohn is credited with the design of Indianapolis landmarks such as the Anthenaeum (401 E. Michigan), the William A. Block Company, and the Fletcher Trust building.
Over the years urban flight left numerous homes in disrepair and cut up into apartments and multi-family dwellings. Many caring and committed neighbors have brought these magnificent old homes back to their original glory. Today, Historic Meridian Park is a mixture of lifelong residents and relative newcomers. Many of us were first drawn to the fine old homes. Who could resist the romance of homes with Rookwood tile fireplaces, leaded and stained glass windows, hardwood floors and cabinetry, sleeping porches and welcoming front porches?
And the people are the reason we've stayed. Adopting an older house in a city neighborhood takes an open mind and an interest in community. We're a vibrant urban community with an active Neighborhood Association.
WELCOME TO MERIDIAN PARK