History and Heritage

Morgan County was formed in 1822, named for Daniel Morgan, a General in the Revolutionary War. The county seat is Martinsville. The first Morgan County Courthouse was the log home of an early pioneer. Work on the current red brick, Italianate style courthouse began in 1857 and was completed in 1859. It is one of the few pre-Civil War courthouses remaining in the state of Indiana. 

Morgan County is also home to the geological “line” where the glaciers stopped their southward advance during the ice ages. As a result, the area has both flat areas and beautiful rolling hills, in addition to the most diverse soil of any county in the United States.


From the melting glaciers to the winding White River, Martinsville’s history is inextricably connected to water. Add in the moniker the “Goldfish Capital of the World” earned by Martinsville entrepreneur Eugene Shireman, who founded Grassyfork Fisheries, and the area’s mineral water heritage, which earned it the name “City of Mineral Water.” In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the county was best known for the Artesian mineral springs in Martinsville, which gave rise to several spas and hotels. In a nod to this unique heritage, the mascot of the Martinsville school system is still the Artesians.


Mooresville was founded in 1824 by Samuel Moore, and subsequently welcomed large numbers of southern Quakers, driven to migrate north by their opposition to slavery. Mooresville is known as the “Home of the State Flag,” which was designed by Mooresville resident and prominent 20th century artist Paul Hadley.

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