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Locating the Site


Map 2: Indianapolis, Indiana. [Map 2] with link to higher quality map.

Madam Walker was so impressed during a visit to Indianapolis in 1910 that she decided to make it her national headquarters. The city was served by eight major railway systems and was home to a substantial African-American community. She built a factory there that employed local African-American men and women. Before her death, Madam Walker planned an ambitious new building for her headquarters. Completed by her daughter in 1927, the Walker Building housed her company as well as other businesses.

Questions for Map 2

1. Why would the railway system in Indianapolis have been important to Madam Walker's business?

2. Locate Monument Circle, the historic center of the city of Indianapolis. Find North, South, East, and West streets, which were the original boundaries of the city.

3. Locate and circle the area around the intersection of Indiana Avenue and West Street, which was the heart of Indianapolis's African-American community. It was lined with cafes, offices, and other thriving businesses.

4. Find the location of Madam Walker's original manufacturing building (built in 1910) on the east side of West Street between North and Walnut streets. Now find the present Walker Building (built in 1927), across the street at the northwest corner of Indiana Avenue and West Street. Why would Walker have decided to establish her business and subsequently plan a commercial and social building in this area?

* The map on the screen has a resolution of 72 dots per inch (dpi), and therefore will print poorly. You can obtain a high quality version of Map 2, but be aware that the file will take as much as two minutes to load with a 28.8K modem.

 

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