Madison Things to Do

  • Madison to Milton Bridge
    Madison to Milton Bridge
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Best Rated Things to Do in Madison

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    Take a walk around Town

    by Toughluck Updated Mar 28, 2007

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    Old town from Clifty Falls Inn
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    Madison retains many of the original buildings from it's heyday as a river port for southern Indiana. Walk along downtown and see the variety of styles and shops. They range from the 1880's through the 1940's. Most have been restored and are well maintained. Some of the shops have retained their original interiors, metal ceilings and all.

    Downtown has many fine little stores. A deluxe chocolate shop may tickle your taste buds. Fine women's clothing, or may be it's the nature shop with it's own natural area in the basement that's more your interest.

    Be sure to step off the main streets and walk through the residental neigborhoods. Here you will find older homes. Stunning homes of the well to do and more modest bungaloos of the middle class.

    Indiana Historical Bureau: ID#: 39.1992.1
    County: Jefferson
    Title: Madison Historic District

    Marker Text: Madison Historic District, listed in National Register, 1973, in over 130 blocks contains hundreds of structures of every type, size, and period, 1812-1920, including many outstanding examples of major 19th century architectural styles. Madison is significant in growth of Indiana historic preservation movement.

    Credit Line: Erected 1992 by Indiana Historical Bureau and Cornerstone Society, Inc.
    Directions: Vaughn Drive & Jefferson Street at Ohio Riverside walk, Madison.

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    Ohio River & Riverfront Park

    by CJD68 Updated May 9, 2003

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    Madison's scenic riverfront park offers a gazebo, brick walkways, lights and benches to view the Ohio River. Also home to several open air festivals, and frequent stops of the American Queen, Delta Queen and Mississippi Queen. Public boat launching facilities are available all year.

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    Broadway Fountain

    by CJD68 Written May 9, 2003

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    Sit down and enjoy a few relaxing moments under the shade of trees listening to the water pouring from the fountain.

    The fountain was originally cast in iron and exhibited at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia in 1876. Purchased by a Madison Lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and presented to the City of Madison in 1886. The fountain was recast in bronze as a community Bicentennial project in 1976.

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    Lanier House

    by Toughluck Updated Mar 28, 2007

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    Indiana Historical Bureau: ID#: 39.1963.2
    County: Jefferson
    Title: James F. D. Lanier 1800-1881

    Marker Text: Rendered his most important public service during the Civil War when he loaned Governor Oliver P. Morton over $400,000 to equip Indiana's troops. He later arranged additional loans to save the credit of the state.

    Credit Line: Erected by the Indiana Civil War Centennial Commission, 1963
    Directions: 511 First & Elm Streets near Ohio River at Lanier Mansion State Historic Site, Madison.

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    Take a hike at Clifty Falls SP

    by Toughluck Updated Nov 6, 2006

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    Tunnel Falls
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    This is a great park. On a hot summer day, you can walk right up the river. Yes, it's an approved trail. There are falls that you'll have to work at to see and then one that's on a nearly wheel chair compatible trail. It's flat, but not all paved. Be sure to stop at the Inn. Have lunch, dinner, or just take in the view from the patio. There are lots of things to do at Clifty Falls State Park.

    Check out my Clifty Falls page at the weblink below or the State Parks website 2nd below.
    Clifty Falls State Park

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    The Bridge

    by Toughluck Updated Nov 3, 2006

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    Madison to Milton Bridge
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    The Bridges over the Ohio are a marvel of construction. As soon as there was a design to span the river, bridges were being built. Today's modern bridges do not carry the same excitement as these early bridges. They were narrow, yet massive is size. Huge cantilever trusses were needed to span the great distances and they had to be high above the water to allow all sizes of boats and barges to pass underneath.

    Crossing them is an experience from the twisting approaches needed to fit in the narrow valley to the huge iron overhead. On-coming traffic feels as if it's in your lane. Don't miss the excitement of crossing, even if all you do is turn around on the other side and come right back.

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    Lanier Mansion & Gardens

    by CJD68 Written May 9, 2003

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    Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1994, this 1844 Greek Revival mansion was designed by architect Francis Costigan for financier and railroad magnate James F.D. Lanier. Recent has recaptured the Mansions 19th century splendor. Guided tours are offered at regular intervals during normal hours of operation. Open Early-April to Mid-December: Tuesday-Saturday 9am-5pm; Sunday 1pm-5pm. Pre-arranged group tours available for groups above 10 from Mid-Dec thru Early April, please call for more information. Closed Monday and all State Holidays, except for Good Friday, Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.

    Formal Gardens to the South of the Mansion recreate the late-nineteenth century appearance of this section of the property, with authentic plant materials and other landscape features. Open year-round dawn to dusk.

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    Madison Railroad Station

    by CJD68 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    During the 1840's, Madison emerged as a major rail center in the Ohio Valley. The octagonal railroad building, constructed in 1895, was used as a passenger station until 1935. Exhibits include railroading artifacts on permanent display. Open daily last weekend of April through end of October. Weekdays only, November through late April.

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    First Presbyterian Church

    by butterflykizzez04 Written Jul 6, 2014
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    Sunday, June 29, 2014...Tony ,Noel and I went to Madison Indiana for the entire day. We really had a great time. We walked around the town enjoying the historical sites of the town. The town is full of historical buildings.

    We found this gorgeous old Church on the side street and there is a gorgeous fountain. It is historical and has been there for over 100 yrs. This gorgeous Victorian Fountain is called Broadway Fountain. I would love to know the history of this gorgeous amazingly detailed fountain.

    History of the Church:

    In 1848, the first church for slaves in Baltimore was organized - it was called Madison Street (colored) Presbyterian Church. Prior to the Emancipation Proclamation, slaves were prohibited from owning property; therefore other congregations - most notably the First Presbyterian Church - and other agencies combined their efforts to build Madison Street and care for its business from its beginnings as a Mission School under the First Presbyterian Church.

    Reverend R. Craig Gailbraith - 1849 to 1858
    R. Craig Gailbraith, the Church's first pastor and only white minister energetically evangelized Baltimore's black community to bring in new members until his resignation.

    Reverend Hiram R. Revels - 1858 to1863
    Hiram R. Revels, who acted for one year as co-pastor with Reverend Gailbraith, succeeded him as the second pastor and Madison's first African-American minister. He later became one of two Black U.S. Senators who served the government during the Reconstruction Period. Revels was perhaps the most well-known minister of the church. Later nationally known, he is the only minister of Madison Avenue whose biography is listed in the Encyclopedia Britannica.
    The Nadir Period:

    Seven ministers (most were not formerly installed) graced the church's pulpit -during this short period of seventeen years. Nationally, during these years: the Civil War ended; and Reconstruction was started and finished, the Civil Rights Act of 1875 was passed, and the North concentrated on one of the most significant economic growth periods in this country's history

    I would love to go inside the church but it was Sunday and there was services going on. I would love to go back on a Saturday and take a tour.

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    Ohio Theater

    by butterflykizzez04 Written Jul 6, 2014
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    Sunday, June 28, Tony, Noel and I was in Madison Indiana. A quaint little historical town on the Ohio River. The real name to fame here is the movie in 1958 "Some Came Running" with Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Shirley MacLaine was filmed here and they stayed here during the filming of the movie.

    At the Ohio Movie Theater on Main Street there is a Bronze Star on the sidewalk talking about the movie, the stars and the movie Premiere that was held here in Madison at the Ohio Theater..

    The Ohio Theatre was built in 1938 and is located in the small Ohio River town of Madison, Indiana. The site where the theater sits first housed a nickelodeon in the early-1900's, then a movie theatre called the Little Grand Theatre, which burned in 1937.

    Rebuilt as the Ohio Theatre in 1938, it ran first run movies until it closed in 1993.

    Renovated and reopened in 1996, the now-twinned Ohio continues to show mid-run family targeted movies (no R-rated films) and also operates as a venue for various live events throughout the year

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Madison Things to Do

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