“It was a dark and stormy night…”, well actually, it was cloudy (thought it did get stormy later) and it was morning…like early morning. But! We met at a donut shop and had excellent donuts from North Lime Donuts (their original store in Lexington was on our 1st Annual Donut Run last year, but cut for being too far away). 6 cars and 7 folk altogether made the 200 mile round trip to Story Inn, in Story, IN, inside Brown County.
Along the way, we decided to explore some of the farm country between Salem, IN and I-65. We visited two separate covered bridges along the way, including one outside Medora, the longest single span covered bridge and this one in Leota, what must be the worlds shortest.
Although rain had threatened and was in the air, we were able to get to the Story Inn on time for our noon reservation. We looked at the numerous antique bottles and other glassware, the kitchen meat grinder (I remember my mother using one in the 1960s) and other antiques in the main dining room.
The village of Story itself was founded in 1851, with the grant of a land patent from President Millard Fillmore to Dr. George Story. Dr. Story and his progeny built many of the structures which distinguish this town today, from the then-ample supply of domestic hardwoods. Story soon became the largest settlement in the area. In its heyday (1880-1929) the village supported two general stores, a nondenominational church, a one-room schoolhouse, a grain mill, a sawmill, a slaughterhouse, a blacksmith’s forge and a post office.
Story never recovered from the Great Depression (1929-1933), as families abandoned farms in search of work elsewhere. Brown County lost half of its population between 1930 and 1940. The exodus created the opportunity for the State of Indiana to purchase 16,000 for what is now Brown County State Park.
By the time we had finished lunch, the rain had started. Some opted to head south and hop on I 65 in Brownstown; others, chose the highway through Salem, passing through some occasionally intense cloud bursts, but mostly, just more rain.