and the department were thus given a public character.
Thereafter Independent was dropped from the name of the engine
company, and Hose Company No. 1 was organized.
Firemen as Union Soldiers
In April, 1861, in response to the call for troops at the begin-
ning of the War of the Rebellion, thirty-nine members of the War-
saw Fire Department enlisted for the national service.
At first Pro-
tection Engine Company No. 1 was almost disorganized, but it was
soon recruited nearly to its original strength and the high standard
of the organization maintained. As the old boys had become at least
partially inured to discipline, their records in the army were some-
what noteworthy. Of the thirty-nine who entered military service,
five rose to the rank of lieutenant, seven to that of captain, two of
major, two of colonel and one to that of brigadier general. Nine of
them died in the service of their country — Colonel Joseph P. Leslie,
Captain Julian A. Robins and Cyrus Bair killed on the field of battle,
and six from other causes, either at the front or soon after returning
Fire of 1866
In June, 1866, occurred one of the most destructive fires of the
Town period. It swept away the Wright and the Kirtley hotels, at
264 HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY
Indiana and Center streets, the new Baptist Church and other build-
ings, but the fire department came through it with honors, notwith-
standing. The greatest handicap in a successful fight against the
progress of the fire was a scarcity of hose, and the fact that nearly all
the buildings, even in this business district, were of the light frame
kind. Before this disastrous month closed, a new supply of hose
was procured, and the Lake City Hook and Ladder Company No. 1
Expansions of the Department
In the spring of 1868 the Board of Trustees determined to thor-
oughly equip the department, and contracted with the Silsby Man-
ufacturing Company for a good first-class steam fire engine, a hose
cart and a large supply of new hose. A substantial brick house had
been erected during the previous year and there the new engine
(Kosciusko No. 2) was duly installed, in charge of the old and tried
Protection Company No. 1.
About the time Protection No. 1 took charge of the steamer, a
company under the name of Young America No. 2 was organized
with L. C. Wiltshire as foreman, Clinton Walton as first assistant,
Joseph A. Brewer, second assistant, G. E. Runyan, secretary, and
M. L. Crawford, treasurer. The members, numbering thirty-five,
were young, ranging from sixteen to twenty-one years. After about
a year the organization was abandoned.
It was evident, however, that there was room for another com-
pany, and in February, 1871, some of the fonner members of Pro-
tection Company organized the Never Fails No. 2. James IMilice, one
of the old charter members, was elected foreman ; George Pratt, first
assistant; Joseph A. Wright, second assistant; W. B. Punk, secre-
tary, and John S. Wynant, treasurer. Old Protection hand engine
was assigned to the new organization, but in February, 1873, the
trustees purchased a more powerful engine from the Cleveland Fire
Department and gave it into the keeping of Never Fails No. 2.
Chiefly fok Sporting Purposes
Independent Hose Companj^ No. 1 was organized in June, 1876,
■'chiefly for sporting purposes," and was, to a great extent, "com-
posed of members of other companies," but had a "full complement
of men for service." The words in quotation were taken from a con-
temporaneous writer, who continues : ' ' The company is not subject
HISTOKY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY 265
to the orders of the chief or of the City Council, as they owu their
outfit — a very handsome hose carriage from the Babcoek Manufac-
turing Company, purchased at a cost of $300. This company is not
backward in re«pionding to an alarm of fire, however, and when they
do so they use the hose belonging to the department."
Fire Dep.\rtment in 1875-76
At this time Warsaw had been a citj^ about a year, and its fire
department was given as follows : Protection Company No. 1, 26
members, and Hose Company No. 1, 13 members, in one organiza-
tion ; Never Fails No. 2, 18 members, and Hose No. 2, 12 members,
in one organization; Lake City Hook and Ladder No. 1, 15 mem-
bers; Independent Hose Company No. 1, 16 members.
The apparatus: One Silsby steamer, valued at $4,500; one serv-
iceable hand engine, $750; one old hand engine (Pi'otection), not in
use, $300 ; one hook and ladder truck, with entire outfit, $450 ; three
hose carts, cost not given. Total cost, or value, $6,000. Altogether,
there was now about 1,500 feet of good hose, chiefly rubber.
Building of Schools in 1872-73
The early '70s were marked by a busy season of school building.
The second high school and the East and "West Ward schools were all
erected in 1872-73.
Following is a succinct statement of their original cost:
The ground for the East Ward cost $ 400
The ground for the West Ward cost 675
The two buildings, ready for seating 15,650
Furnishings, grading, fencing, etc 2,700
Total East and West Ward schools $19,425
The old building used for a high school was sold for $1,000. The
new building erected on the same ground in 1872-73, being lots 172,
173, 174 and 181, cost, ready for seating, $15,824.23; to this add
interior furnishings and improvements of grounds, $2,700 ; making
a total for the high school of 1872-73 of $18,524.23.
Public Schools at Municipal Incorporation
About the time the city was incorporated, the following repre-
sented the Public School system of
266 HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY
Board of Education — N. N. Boydston, president ; H. W. Upson,
secretary; J. D. Thayer, treasurer; 0. W. Miller, superintendent.
Teachers — Center School : Mrs. C. A. Hass, high school ; Mrs. S.
C. Long, grammar A ; Miss Emma Hayward, grammar B ; Miss MoUie
Neff, grammar C; Miss Sarah L. Hodge, intermediate; Miss S. A.
East School: Mrs. H. P. Miller, intermediate; Mrs. M. H.
West School : Mrs. Celestia Grant, intermediate ; Miss Ella Fet-
The High School op 1904
These buildings were improved and enlarged to keep pace with
the growing city and its requirements, until it became necessarj- to
make radical additions to the school accommodations and meet the
modern demands for ventilation, heating and lighting as a powerful
auxiliary to the mental efficiency and development of the pupils.
The first of the buildings erected in the early '70s to be remodeled
was the Center Ward structure, which was terribly overcrowded.
Not only was the high school accommodated therein, but the gram-
mar grades. In 1904, however, the new building was erected at the
corner of Main and Washington streets and all the high school work
concentrated in it, while the grades were retained in the Center Ward
school. Thus both departments were given a chance to expand.
New Center Ward Schoolhouse
About 1912, the old Center Ward building, corner of East Market
and Detroit streets, was condemned by the city as being unsafe and
unsanitary. Some time later lots were purchased of William Con-
rad, William Losure, Earl Conrad, Mre. George Snyder, William F.
Matchett and B. 0. Morris, on Main Street at the north end of High,
as the site for a new building. Plans were finally drawn by Samuel
A. Craig, of Huntington, and construction was begun under the direc-
tion of "the Warsaw contractors, Gast & Hodges. In June, 1916, the
comer stone of the schoolhouse was laid by the local Masonic lodge,
the work was rushed through the summer and fall months, and the
new Center Ward School building was in readiness for occupancy
in the second week of January, 1917. It was erected and equipped
at a cost of more than $56,000, and is the best illustration in Warsaw
of up-to-date school architecture, furnishings and appliances.
HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY 267
The Center Ward School is three stories in height, with the
ground floor above the level of the street, the entrance being into
the second. On the ground floor are the rooms used for manual
training, laboratory work, domestic science and sewing: heating and
ventilating plants; toilet, fuel and storage accommodations. On the
second floor are six class rooms, and suites of offices and rest rooms;
on the third floor, four class rooms, a large auditorium with stage
and equipment, cloak rooms, and toilet accommodations on each floor.
Concrete steps lead to the street and concrete walks to the play-
grounds, which are provided with all the modern appliances for the
exercise and entertainment of the pupils.
Public School System of Today
The addition of the Center Ward building gives Warsaw ample
school facilities for present needs and probable demands of the future
for some time to come. The chief executives of the local systems are
as follows: W. F. Maish, president of the School Board; William
Crist, treasurer; Flint E. Bash, secretary; James M. Leffel, super-
intendent of schools; R, W. Townseud, principal of the high school.
Through comparatively late reforms the Warsaw s.ystem of pub-
lie education has been raised in efficiency and broadened in scope.
The ward buildings have grades from the First to the Fifth, inclus-
ive, with the Sixth, Seventh and Eighth grades of the entire city or-
ganized into the Junior High School, at the new Center Ward build-
ing. The purpose of this plan is to make it possible for the pupils
of the upper grades to have a more diversified course of study, such
as manual training, domestic science, general science and other spe-
cial lines which are to be introduced later.
By grouping the pupils in this way, it is not necessary to dupli-
cate equipment in the various buildings, thereby ■ using it at one
building, full time. It is also possible by these diversified courses to
give more practical phases of education to the pupils who are not
permitted to continue work in the high school. In view of the fact
that not more than nine per cent of the pupils enrolled in the Sixth,
Seventh and Eighth grades get into high school courses, the advan-
tage of this arrangement is apparent. It ofl:'ers special training of a
practical nature to grades below the regular high school which would
not otherwise receive its benefit.
Among the new features of the local system made possible by the
building of the Center Ward school were: Vocational training in
agriculture in the high school for boys; home making, a vocational
HISTORY OP KOSCIUSKO COUXTY
course for girls; afternoon classes in sewing for adults; evening
classes in sewing and cooking; evening commercial classes; and a
complete record of all school children in the city. In addition to the
usual financial reports, statistics of all phases of the school work are
Because of the space and facilities added to the system by the
erection of the Center Ward building, and the impi'ovement of other
schoolhouses, health conditions have been much improved. The stu-
dents are now so distributed that only one grade is occupying a room
where formerly it was necessary to crowd two or three grades into
the same space.
One of Warsaw
These improvements of the last few years have been so radical
and far-reaching, that the Warsaw school system is about to be ad-
mitted to the Northern Central Association of Colleges and Secondary
Schools. This organization includes the educational institutions men-
tioned throughout the Central States, and i-equires its members to
reach a certain standard of work in order that the pupils may enter
college without further preparation.
The Warsaw Public Library
None of the public institutions of Warsaw have been more con-
sistently supported, or proved higher and broader in their uplifting
capacity, than the public library. As in other progressive cities, it
HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY 269
has reached the point for which its founders and promoters have
always aimed, and is heartily recognized as the close connecting link
between the public and the local systems of education. Especially
do the teachers of the public schools and the public library manage-
ment co-operate to give literature a new and vital meaning; to make
books instruments of true culture by applying them to current topics
and the every-day aifairs of life.
The history of the "Warsaw Public Library presents a special rea-
son why this should be so, as the original movement in the collection
of books was started by the public school management and, until a
comparatively recent date, the library was installed in the old Center
The nucleus of the public library was formed as early as 1885,
and was conducted for many years by the City School Board. A re-
organization was effected under the state law of 1911, but no material
change in the management was made until a special Library Board
was organized in 1915.
The first Library Board was composed of the following: Mrs.
William Conrad, president ; Mrs. W. W. Reed, vice president ; Flint
Bash, secretary ; other members, A. G. Wood, Mrs. Emma Shackel-
ford, T. Wayne Anglin and Superintendent of Schools H. S. Kauf-
man. After the death of Mr. Anglin, Mr. Van Schrom was appointed
to till the vacancy, and Superintendent James M. Leffel succeeded
Mr. Kaufman. Aside from these changes and the addition of C. C.
Dukes, trustee of Wayne Township, an ex-oiScio member of the board,
the management remains the same. Three of the members are ap-
pointed by the judge of the Circuit Court, two by the School Board
and two by the City Council.
The basement of the old Center Ward School, in which the librai-y
was first housed, began to seriously tell upon the nerves of the ladies
of Warsaw who had long been promoters of the enterprise. A sep-
arate, comfortable and convenient building was their aim, and, al-
though at first defeated in their efforts, they persevered and tinall}-
got into correspondence with the Carnegie Corporation of New York.
To push the work more sj-stematically and effectively, they organized
the Warsaw Library Board, as announced, on February 26, 1915.
As soon as the organization was effected, the board began plans
for the erection of a suitable building and earnestly appealed to the
Carnegie Corporation for assistance. Samuel A. Craig, of Hunting-
ton, Indiana, drew the plans which were sent to the Carnegie people
in New York. Their proffered allowance of .$12,500 did not meet the
expectations of the Library Board. After further correspondence
270 HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY
on this point, the Carnegie Corporation agreed to a donation of
$15,000, provided the librai-y management would consent to include
the whole of Wayne Township in the scope of its accommodations.
With this substantial assurance, the Warsaw Library Board pur-
chased a lot for the building site on the corner of Detroit and Buffalo
streets, owned by Mrs. Robert Wallace, of Leesburg and occupied by
the old McCoy Sanatorium. As most of the progressive people of the
city deemed that site inadequate, B. F. Richardson, then mayor of
the city, bought the adjoining lot, with the understanding that the
Library Board should come into formal possession of it when the
property could be purchased.
When this ample site had been secured, work was started on the
building (July, 1916), and it was ready for occupancy in April,
The old Center School building was abandoned for library pur-
poses on January 1, 1917, when the collection consisted of less than
5,000 volumes. These were moved to the basement of the uncom-
pleted library building. Then commenced the gleaning of the worn
and imperfect books, which resulted in greatly reducing the number
of volumes reported as available to the public. Since that time, by
purchases and gifts the number of volumes had been increased to
more than 6,400, with some 3,000 regular borrowers.
The successive librarians have been Ethel Baker, Mrs. Clint Ded-
erick (Blanche Goddard), Mrs. Frank Leonard (Lulu Helpman),
Mrs. Minnie Gary and Miss Miriam Netter.
In addition to the regular work of the circulating department,
the feature of story-telling was introduced to the activities of the
library. Though epidemics and other causes have at times inter-
fered with this juvenile work, it has, on the whole, been continuous
and the results have been most satisfactory.
While the war was in progress, its work was also broadened and
intensified, as was the case with every other public institution in the
land. It did everything possible to assist the Government in its
campaigns for food conservation, by supplying economy recipes for
cooking, food posters and general information for housewives.
Prospective soldiers and those in actual training were supplied with
military manuals, and the librarj' was the headquarters for the col-
lection and distribution of most of the books sent to the military
camps. Also, while the war gai'dens were in process of formation
and in full operation, hundreds of amateur truck raisers sought the
Public Library for practical instruction in their work; and never
applied to it in vain.
HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY 271
The benefits of the library are not confined to "Warsaw, but sub-
stations have been established in the Heeter School and the East and
"West "Wayne consolidated schools, in order to thoroughly carry out
the agreement made with the Carnegie Corporation, by which the
gift, as originally proposed by that body, was increased. The work
of the library has been broadened and made more effective by the
close co-operation of the club ladies of Warsaw, and through the
hearty support of the enterprise by the public in general.
Public Utilities and Necessities
"Water and light have always been classed as necessities, and in
the modern days electricity and gas have virtually fallen into that
group. They are often owned or controlled by the town or city
within which the systems are operated, but in the case of "Warsaw
the owners and operators are private corporations.
The two most essential commodities in the life of the city — water
and light — are furnished consumers by the "Winona Electric Light
and "Water Company. "With the exception of the "Winona Interurban
Company, it is the leading utilities organization in the county, rep-
resenting an investment of more than $300,000.
"Winona Electric Light and "Water Company
The "Winona Electric Light and "Water Company originated in
the old "Warsaw "Water Company, which was organized in 1886 under
the direction of James S. Prazer. Subsequently it erected an electric
light plant at the north end of Buffalo Street near the water works,
but furnished illumination only to the business district, cutting off
the cui-rent at 10 o'clock each night. In 1903 a company was organ-
ized by the "Winona Assembly, with Thomas Kane as president, to
furnish light and heat to the property controlled by that corpora-
tion. After combining the two companies and their utilities, with
headquarters established in "Warsaw, extensive changes were made
and both the light and water lines were extended to cover a much
In 1910, Theodore Frazer was made manager of the consolidated
"Winona Electric Light and "Water Company, and under his manage-
ment many improvements and extensions were made. At the present
time there are about fifteen miles of water mains in "Warsaw and five
miles in the Town of "Winona Lake.
The company furnished steam heat to fifty public buildings and
272 HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY
residences in Winona. Light is furnished to both places, and thei'e
are also some fifty power customers iu Warsaw. In addition to the
water supplied to the residences and public places, about ninety fire
plugs are stationed throughout the city.
In order to provide a more abundant and better supply of water,
in 1914 the company sunk twelve-inch wells, 100 feet deep on South
Lake Street, and installed a pumping station there, in addition to the
plant located on Center Lake at the north end of Buffalo Street. In
1917 a large steam turbine was placed at the light plant, costing
about $20,000. During the two years before the entry of the United
States into the war, more than $40,000 was spent for improvements
by the company. Like all other men of affairs and standing, Mr.
Frazer was drafted into the service and did his good part, and the
management and development of the Winona Electric Light and Water
Company were teraporarilj- left in other hands.
The Warsaw Gas Company
Although gas commenced to be supplied to the residents of War-
saw and Winona many years ago, under local ownership and man-
agement, it is only within the past dozen years that sufficient means
have been invested in the sj'stem to make it represent a really im-
portant utility. For several years the city has enjoyed a twenty-four
hour gas service, which has met every requirement. The gas and
coke plant of the company are located on the Big Four Line near
South Street, while its central office is in the business district of
The present owners of the system, which covers both Warsaw
and the Town of Winona Lake, are the American Railways Company,
of Philadelphia, and it is operated under the name of the National
Gas, Electric Light and Power Company. E. G. Jones is superin-
tendent and K. P. Hawkins local manager. The foreign ownership
and management obtained a controlling interest in the Warsaw sys-
tem in 1905.
During the early part of 1917, the Warsaw Gas Company, with
many other gas and electric concerns in the East, was combined and
bought by the Philadelphia syndicate mentioned. It was the inten-
tion of the purchasers to promptly place the purchased properties in
running order, improve upon old machinery and equipment, and pre-
pare for an increase of patronage. During the year new pipe lines
were laid in different parts of the city, often in sections where the
patronage would not have justified the expenditure for an extension
HISTORY OF KOSCIUSKO COUNTY 273
of the service. In 1917 and 1918, when the coal shortage was greatest,
the company supplied householders with fuel when it was sometimes
almost impossible to purchase it of local dealers ; the better grades of
Virginia coal being customarily sold to the people at the prices
charged by dealers for the inferior Indiana article.
In the summer of 1917 the company also laid a separate pipe line
to Winona Lake, and since then that growing community and incor-
porated town has had an abundant supply for both illuminating,
cooking and heating purposes. Necessarily, the war interfered with
many of the contemplated improvements in machinery and other me-
chanical outfit, as, with the unprecedented rise of materials and
wages, it was impossible to carry out many contracts based upon the
At the present time, the gas system which embraces the corporate
areas of Warsaw and Winona Lake, with much intervening territory,
includes 20.36 miles of mains, and accommodates nearly 1,500 con-
sumers. Its chief bi-product, coke, is also manufactured in large
quantities and is readily purchased both by manufactories and house-
The Commercial Telephone Company
The above named stands for another private enterprise which has
so expanded as to become a leading public utility. It was organized
in 1900, and the service includes both Warsaw and Winona Lake,
with about 1,000 telephones in operation in the city and 500 in the
village and rural districts. It is estimated that there is invested in
the system something like $125,000. The company owns its own
building in Wai-saw and operates a utility which, as need not be re-
peated, is as near indispensable as anything can be upon which actual
life does not depend. Conceive of being entirely without telephones !
It would almost seem like going back to the dark ages.
WARSAW'S CHURCHES AND SOCIETIES
First Warsaw Church, Tamarack Cabin — M. E. Conference and
Local Organization — Pay op Early M. E. Circuit Preachers —
First Methodist Camp Meeting — First and Present Sabbath
Schools — Methodist Edifices — M. E. Home of Today — First
Presbyterian Church — Christian Church of Warsaw — The
Baptist Church — The Baptist Temple — United Brethren
Church — The Brethren Church of Warsaw — Other Religious
Bodies — Secret and Benevolent Societies — The Masonic Bodies
— The Odd Fellows of Warsaw — Knights of Pythias and
Pythian Sisters — Red Men and Modern Woodmen — The Elks,
Eagles and Moose — Other Organizations.