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Conner Prairie

Conner Prairie in Indiana is a renowned living history museum located in Fishers, Hamilton County. It stands as a bridge to the past, offering a dynamic and immersive experience into Indiana’s history, particularly focusing on the state’s development during the 19th century. Here’s a summary tailored for Indiana Social Studies Educators:


  • Location: Fishers, Hamilton County, Indiana
  • Establishment: Opened in the 1930s by pharmaceutical magnate Eli Lilly
  • Mission: To inspire curiosity and foster learning about Indiana’s past by providing engaging, individualized, and unique experiences.

Key Features

  • Interactive History Park: Conner Prairie brings history to life through interactive exhibits, live demonstrations, and hands-on activities. It is divided into several historically themed areas, each designed to represent different periods of Indiana’s past.
  • 1836 Prairietown: A recreated 19th-century village where visitors can experience what life was like in Indiana during the 1830s. Actors in period costume portray townsfolk, engaging visitors in the daily activities, crafts, and trades of the time.
  • 1863 Civil War Journey: This area immerses visitors in the tumultuous period of the Civil War, highlighting Indiana’s role and the impact on its people. It features interactive storytelling, live reenactments, and exhibits on the era’s technology and social issues.
  • Lenape Indian Camp: Offers insights into the lives of the Lenape (Delaware) Native Americans in Indiana, focusing on their culture, traditions, and interactions with settlers.
  • Animal Encounters: A section dedicated to exploring Indiana’s agricultural heritage, featuring historic breeds and modern farming practices.
  • Balloon Voyage: An attraction that provides aerial views of the park and surrounding areas, symbolizing Indiana’s contributions to early aeronautics and the spirit of exploration.

Educational Value

Conner Prairie is an invaluable resource for Indiana Social Studies Educators, offering:

  • Curriculum-based Programs: Tailored educational programs that align with Indiana’s academic standards, designed to enhance students’ understanding of history, science, and culture.
  • Professional Development: Workshops and resources for teachers to integrate historical knowledge and inquiry-based learning techniques into their classrooms.
  • Field Trips and Virtual Learning: Opportunities for immersive learning experiences on-site or through digital platforms, allowing students to explore Indiana’s history in an engaging manner.