Indiana history and Community heritage are archived, displayed and celebrated at the Academy of Hoosier Heritage. Permanent and temporary displays make up this Indiana museum‘s collection, including the popular one-room school exhibit. School children frequently tour the academy on field trips so this can be a very educational day trip for Indianapolis kids too. Special events, tours, programs and presentations are available throughout the year, and the best part is admission is free! Although donations are graciously accepted.
The structure that houses the Academy of Hoosier Heritage was built in 1861. A Quaker group called the Religious Society of Friends constructed the two story brick building, and it was originally used as a boarding school. Over time it was used as an elementary, middle and high school, and at one time it housed all three. It’s now called the Academy Building, and it’s believed to be Indiana’s first high school. It was a school building in some capacity for ore then 110 years.
An exciting fourth grade field trip comes through the Academy of Hoosier Heritage each year. The kids go to class in the one room school and experience school days straight out of Indiana history. The old wooden desks and blackboard demonstrate the times. The first floor of the Academy Building is not part of this Indiana museum. The Community Foundation of Morgan County Inc. has offices in the building and public meeting space is available.
John Wooden is an Indiana native who is showcased every Spring at the Academy of Hoosier Heritage. March Madness brings about tons of excitement in Indianapolis and all throughout the state and Morgan County is no exception. John Wooden is an Indiana basketball legend who coached the UCLA team through 10 championships and 7 of them were consecutive. Before coaching on the west coast he worked with the Indiana State University team. Today he is considered by many to be a leadership and coaching expert, and is very well known for his humble nature.
Before his major basketball coaching success, John Wooden played for the state championship winning Martinsville High School basketball team. In college, he played as a point guard for Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. John was All American for 3 years, and the College Basketball Player of the Year in 1932, and won the National Championship that year. He’ll be turning 100 this October, and in 2006 he was among the first legends to be inducted to the National College Basketball Hall of Fame. There have been dozens of awards over the years, including his induction to the National Basketball Hall of Fame in 1960, as a player, and in 1972 as a coach.
Books written by and about John Wooden are on display and even for sale at the Academy of Hoosier Heritage. Other displays at the museum date back as early as the 1800s. Mooresville area community history is depicted through the generations at the Academy of Hoosier Heritage.
The Academy is open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 1-5pm. Group tours and private tours are available upon request, and must be scheduled in advance. Be sure to plan ahead for your day trip from Indianapolis. While you’re down south of Indy, be sure to catch a movie at Mooresville’s Center Brook drive in theater.
Academy of Hoosier Heritage
250 North Monroe Street
Mooresville, Indiana 46158