• Population- 6,272,000
  • Capital- Indianapolis
  • Largest cities– Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, Evansville
  • Time zone- Central
  • Date of Admission to the Union- December 11, 1816
  • Slogan- “The Crossroads of America”
  • State website URL-

Few other American events mark a place as much as does the Indianapolis 500 race held each year at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Affectionately called the Indy 500, the first race was run in 1911. Today the event may be one of the most watched sporting events, according to some sources. The Speedway itself was originally made from gravel, but of course, is now a paved, state of the art track. The venue is only second oldest in the world to the famous, but less widely recognized, Milwaukee Mile.

Modern day highways criss-cross the patchwork of fields creating a man-made geographical web of highway. In the southern part of the state there is more wooded area. Also prevalent, a geologic underpinning of limestone has made the area one of the most productive spots for quarrying.

Steel making is often attributed to Illinois, but Indiana boasts the lead in steel production. But steel is demanding on the environment and the Calumet region of Indiana, between Gary and the Illinois state line are under serious reclamation. This region is a unique ecological mix of dunes, wetland that lie precariously in the balance at the edge of Lake Michigan.

Industry and large business often choose Indiana over other states for its hand-off approach to business. In most states, for example, an employer must have valid and well-documented reasons for firing or laying off an employee. Not so in Indiana—employers may choose to fire and layoff whoever they’d like for whatever reason.

A crowd of well-recognized and extremely reputable institutions head up the impressive list of Indiana colleges and universities: Purdue University, Valparaiso University, University of Notre Dame, and DePauw, are just few. All have been given accolades for their abilities to attract not only top outside talent, but to appeal to in-state talent as well. Unfortunately, the state is equally well recognized for losing those same students after graduation. The Indiana brain drain is now a key political and social hot button.