Nearly 200 years ago, a small group of people decided to create a city on the banks of the White River. Beginning in 2020, we’ll celebrate our city’s birthday.
About the Bicentennial
The Indianapolis bicentennial is underway, and beginning in June 2020, the city is coming together to recognize 200 years of innovation, expansion, and civic pride in the place we call home. The year-long celebration will last through May 2021 to pay proper homage to the creation of Indianapolis, while including all of our city’s most iconic events. Like other Indianapolis milestones, the bicentennial will seek to be inclusive of the rich diversity of our city, incorporating local arts, culture, civics, education, and more.
In 1820, the Indiana legislature hand-picked commissioners to locate the state’s new capital as near as possible to the center of the state to take advantage of western migration. The legislature approved the site as the new capital in early 1821, and the name Indianapolis was chosen as a combination of Indiana and the Greek word “polis” for city. The Indianapolis bicentennial celebration will reflect on and honor the city’s rich history, and it will embrace what is coming next.
Arts Council of Indianapolis: Celebrating with Public Art
Indiana Historical Society: Indianapolis History Collecting Initiative
POLIS Center: Digital Encyclopedia of Indianapolis
WFYI, Ted Green Films, & Banayote Photography: The Builders
Indianapolis Historic Preservation Commission’s Bicentennial Poster Project