THE WABASH AND ERIE CANAL
which operated 1841-1872 between Toledo, Ohio, and Evansville,
Indiana and which through Lafayette paralleled the Wabash River, crossing
Main Street at the east end of the bridge.
Tablet placed by General De Lafayette Chapter
Daughters of the American Revolution
Tablet is located on the courthouse retaining wall
on the north side of the courthouse along Main Street.
On January 27, 1836 was enacted into law the famous Internal Improvement Act. This act provided for an extension of the Wabash-Erie Canal from the mouth of the Tippecanoe River to Terre Haute, a distance of 104 miles, and the first section as far as Lafayette was completed July 4, 1843.
At Lafayette the canal cut a big commercial figure, but with the introduction of the railway systems it was forever abandoned and for many years there has been but little to mark the site of that waterway. The Wabash-Erie Canal was paralleled by the Wabash Railroad. The tracks of the Wabash Valley Traction line was built on the old towpath. The Wabash Valley railroad was completed to Lafayette June 20, 1856.
The canal was abandoned in 1874 and on February 12, 1877 was sold by court order to satisfy the suit of some Indiana stockholders.
This is a photo of the Wabash-Erie Canal from the Columbia Street Bridge in Lafayette, Indiana.
A few years ago, the canal area was excavated to prepare for railroad relocation.