CLARKSVILLE, IN (October 10, 2022) – The State of Indiana has added Clarksville’s Centralia Court neighborhood to the National Register of Historic Places. Platted in 1926 as a suburban alternative to urban housing development in the region, the compact plat of 35 homes lines two streets with ample yards and mature trees. The development is a microcosm of a history of housing development in Clarksville in the 20th Century.
The Centralia plat was laid out adjacent to the State Road that led from New Albany to Clarksville, Jeffersonville and to the soon to be opened Second Street bridge directly into downtown Louisville. In addition, the land lay on the route of the interurban which connected from New Albany, and New Albany’s Glenwood Park, through Clarksville, to Jeffersonville and, after the 1929 opening of the Second Street Bridge, into Louisville.
The five original homes in the district are larger in scale and built for middle-class families during the late 1920s. The Great Depression ended home building until the late 1930s, and at that time, three more homes were built. World War II ended home building again until the mid-to-late 1940s and early 1950s, during which time most of the homes, 21 in all, were built in the district. four houses were built between 1956 and 1965 on lots previously platted for commercial activity and conclude the period of significance.
Centralia Historic District residents gathered on Thursday, October 6 on Lowell Avenue to celebrate the historic designation and learned how they can apply for residential rehabilitation grants to help maintain their properties. Following that, Jim Kenney led a walking tour telling the stories of the dwelling and their occupants over the years.