Fayette County (pop. 24,277) is east of Rush County. It’s one of 11 Fayette counties.
All 11 were named for Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier, the Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834), the Frenchman who fought in the American Revolutionary War.
The county seat of Fayette County is the city of Connersville (pop. 13,481). Connersville reached its peak population of 17,698 in 1960.
In the early 20th century, Connersville was known as “Little Detroit” (as was Toledo, Ohio) because of its many automobile manufacturing plants.
The Stant Corporation, founded in Connersville in 1898 and still headquartered there, was the world’s largest producer of piano tuning pins.
Connersville High School had the first public high school band in the country, in 1906-07.
Film director and producer Robert Wise (1914-2005) grew up in Connersville. He won the Academy Award for Best Director for “The Sound of Music” and “West Side Story.”
The Whitewater Valley Railroad runs 19 miles between Connersville and Metamora on former Penn Central railroad tracks.
The Thomas Ranck Round Barn (1904) is on the National Register of Historic Places.
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