Historic African American sites in Indiana to benefit from grants

Black History Month

(INDIANA) Two funds honoring the legacy of a retired Eli Lilly chemist are providing grants to organizations working to preserve significant African American landmarks in Indiana.

Standiford “Stan” Cox, who passed away in February 2019, joined Eli Lilly and Co. in 1957 as its first Black chemist and was a generous advocate for the preservation of African American heritage sites. During his lifetime, he established two funds with the Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF), one in his name and one to honor his parents.

The Standiford H. Cox Fund supports the restoration, preservation, operation and ongoing maintenance of African American historic sites in Indiana. The Dovie Stewart Cox & Chester A. Cox Sr. Memorial Fund provides support for Lost Creek Community Grove at the Lost Creek Settlement near Terre Haute, one of the state’s earliest settlements of free people of color.

Indiana Landmarks’ African American Landmarks Committee serves as a preservation advisor to both funds, recommending projects. In 2020, the fund awarded $135,000 to 15 projects:

Embracing Hope of Howard County, Inc., Kokomo: $10,000 for rehabilitation of the 1919 Douglass School.

Evansville African American Museum, Inc.: $5,000 to help repair the c. 1930 Alfred and Phoebe Porter House in Evansville’s Baptisttown neighborhood.

Friends of the Town Clock Church, Inc., New Albany: $10,000 to help insulate the attic of the 1852 church.

Historic Eleutherian College, Inc., Lancaster: $3,000 to help develop visitor displays, publications, and a video showcasing the history and upper stories of the 1855 building.

Historic Madison Foundation, Inc.: $15,000 for repairs to the 1850 former African Methodist Episcopal Church in Madison’s Georgetown neighborhood.

Lyles Station Historic Preservation Corporation, Inc.: $10,000 for structural repairs, painting and gutter replacement on the 1919 Lyles Consolidated School near Princeton.

Lynn Street Colored School Center of Goodwill, Inc., Seymour: $10,000 for masonry repair and structural stabilization of the 1870 school.

Olivet African Methodist Episcopal Church, South Bend: $10,000 to help replace the roof of the 1923 church.

Prince Hall Masonic Association, Inc., Indianapolis: $10,000 for roof repairs to the 1916 Oriental Lodge No. 500.

UNWA-ANU, Inc., Indianapolis: $9,000 to install a new furnace and air conditioning system and repair doors and historic windows at the 1906 Indianapolis Public Library Branch #1.

Wabash Valley Community Foundation, Terre Haute: $10,000 to replace a wheelchair lift system to the sanctuary of the historic Allen Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Four of the grants aided projects supported by Indiana Landmarks:

$8,000 to help install steel door systems in the 1941 North Gleason Park Community Building in Gary.

$5,000 to create signage raising awareness of the National Register-listed Flanner House Homes Historic District in Indianapolis, in partnership with neighborhood organization M.E.D.I.C.

$10,000 for roof and rafter repairs on the 1858 Roberts Chapel in Atlanta, in partnership with Roberts Chapel and Homecoming Burial, Inc.

$10,000 to repair the roof and chimneys of the National Register-listed 1959 St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church in Gary.

People who want to suggest a property that might qualify for grants from the funds should contact Indiana Landmarks with recommendations by April 1, 2021 at coxfunds@indianalandmarks.org.

(This story was originally published on February 3, 2021)

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