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Explore   /   Indiana Destinations   /   Indiana Trips of a Lifetime


Total Mileage/Average drive time
73 miles, 1 hour, 32 minutes

The Old National Road was the first federally funded highway built in the United States. The Road starts at Cumberland, Maryland and continues westward for 620 miles, through six states, ending at Vandalia, Illinois. It divides Indiana in half, not only physically, but also culturally and historically. The Old National Road has been designated as a National Scenic Byway, and as an All-American Road.

1) Richmond
Starting Point

She gazes westward with a gun in hand, a child clinging to her skirts and a babe in arms, this Madonna of the Trails. There are a total of 12 Madonna monuments, all like her, from Cumberland, Maryland to Upland, California. These statues were designed as a tribute to the pioneer women who traveled this road during the westward expansion of the Nineteenth Century.

2) Knightstown
34 miles, 44 minutes

Catch Hoosier Hysteria when you visit the Knightstown Academy, where the 1986 movie Hoosiers was filmed. It now houses a basketball museum and the Hoosier Gym. Travel back to the 1950's where you can shoot a basketball from center court, walk through the "Hickory Hucksters" locker room, or sit in the stands and relive the Hoosier Hysteria of 1952.

3) Greenfield
13 miles, 15 minutes

Born here in 1849, James Whitcomb Riley wrote about growing up along the National Road. Known as the "Hoosier Poet," he composed over 1,000 poems, and was famous for writing about Indiana using the local Hoosier dialect. His poem about an orphan inspired the comic strip, Little Orphan Annie and the popular Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls. The Riley Birthplace is on the National Register of Historic Places.

4) Indianapolis
25 miles, 33 minutes

James Whitcomb Riley lived here from 1893 until his death in 1916. After years spent touring the country, Riley was invited by Charles and Magdalena Holstein to share their home in the Lockerbie Square neighborhood. Riley had a bedroom on the second floor. where he lived for the remaining 23 years of his life. Built in 1872, the house is the only late-Victorian preservation (not restoration) in the country and is registered as a National Historic Landmark. Indianapolis is also home to the Indy 500, "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing." The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Track and Hall of Fame Museum are located just five miles northwest of downtown.