About the Trail


Women have played important roles in shaping the growth and development of IUPUI and its predecessor schools. As staff, professors, directors, and deans, they worked to establish the university’s programs and policies and to gain a reputation of excellence for the university. This trail provides an opportunity to learn about important women in IUPUI’s history, to see where they worked and what entities they helped to establish, and to understand how their historical presence continues to impact the modern-day IUPUI campus.

The Walking Trail Version

Some of the buildings associated with the early history of IUPUI that are discussed on this trail are no longer extant. For those individuals wishing to use this information as a walking trail, a modified version of the guide suitable to the current layout of the campus is available in two parts: Women in Medicine and Women on the Main Campus.

A Note on the History of IUPUI

Although officially founded in 1969, IUPUI has a long history in Indianapolis. The medical school dates to 1906, when Indiana University Bloomington acquired the Central College of Physicians and Surgeons in Indianapolis and relocated two years of its medical school program to the city. In 1908, a merger of several Indiana medical schools into Indiana University resulted in the permanent relocation of IU’s medical program to Indianapolis. In 1914, Long Hospital, the first building on the current medical campus, opened.

For many years, Indianapolis residents had wanted Indiana University to bring extension courses to the city, and in 1916 an IU extension office finally opened in downtown Indianapolis. In 1940, Purdue also began extension work in the city, eventually locating its campus on 38th street. After a number of years, the two schools agreed to consolidate their operations into one effort, and in 1969 merged to form IUPUI. The current campus opened in 1971, with the completion of University Library (now University College), Cavanaugh Hall, and Lecture Hall.

In addition to these early beginnings, a number of independent schools merged with Indiana University prior to the creation of IUPUI. The Normal College (now the School of Physical Education and Tourism Management) is the oldest school at IUPUI. It opened in 1866, and merged with Indiana University in 1941. The Dental School opened in 1879 as the Indiana Dental College and joined the Indiana University Medical Center in 1925. The Law School began in 1894 as the Indiana Law School and merged with IU in 1944. In 1968, it became autonomous from Bloomington’s law school. Finally, the Art Association of Indianapolis opened the Herron School of Art and Design in 1906. It merged with Indiana University in 1967.

IUPUI operates under the control of the IU System, but offers programs and degrees from both Purdue University and Indiana University.

For a detailed history of IUPUI, see the university’s website, http://www.iupui.edu/spirit/history/history-1971.html or Ralph Gray’s book, "IUPUI: The Making of an Urban University" (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2003).


Throughout its history, IUPUI has been home to more influential women faculty and staff than can be acknowledged in one project. As a result, there are women and themes noticeably absent from this trail. In making final selections, the following criteria were applied:

• Any individual woman must have made a significant contribution to university development or to the development of a predecessor school
• Must have made a contribution to the development of a school, program or department within IUPUI
• Must represent a “First” achieved for a woman on campus
• If currently alive, any individual woman must be retired from the university
• Where possible, for those women who are associated with non-extant buildings, the site of the modern-day equivalent building on campus will be used as the trail site

On the medical campus, important themes in women’s history were also considered.

List of Sites


Site 1: Robert Long Hospital (LO) 1110 W. Michigan St.


Site 2: William H. Coleman Hospital for Women (CF)
1140 W. Michigan St.


Site 3: Ball Nurses’ Residence (BR)
1226 W. Michigan St.


Site 4: Riley Hospital for Children (RI)
702 Barnhill Dr.


Site 5: Fesler Hall (FH)
1120 South Dr.


* Site 6: Bobbs Merrill Company Building
122 E Michigan St


Site 7: Cavanaugh Hall (CA)
425 University Blvd.


Site 8: Natatorium (PE)
901 W. New York St.


Site 9: Eskenazi Hall (HR) (Herron School of Art)
735 W. New York St.


Site 10: Education/Social Work Building (ES)
902 W. New York St.


Site 11: University Library (UL)
755 W. Michigan St.


* Site 12: IUPUI Center for Women
1317 W Michigan St


Site 13: Lawrence W. Inlow Hall (IH) (School of Law)
530 W. New York St.


Site 14: Administrative Building (AO)
355 N. Lansing St.



(* former sites)


© Website Copyright 2007, Amy Schramm
© Content Copyright 2007, Mary Owen
For educational use only