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Greencastle, Indiana
City of Greencastle
City hall
City hall
Location of Greencastle in Putnam County, Indiana.
Location of Greencastle in Putnam County, Indiana.
Country United States
State Indiana
County Putnam
Township Greencastle
 • Type Mayor–council
 • Total 5.26 sq mi (13.63 km2)
 • Land 5.21 sq mi (13.50 km2)
 • Water 0.05 sq mi (0.13 km2)
843 ft (257 m)
 • Total 9,820
 • Density 1,884.11/sq mi (727.40/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 765
FIPS code 18-29358
GNIS feature ID 435428

Greencastle is a city in Greencastle Township, Putnam County, Indiana, United States, and the county seat of Putnam County. It was founded in 1821 by Ephraim Dukes on a land grant. He named the settlement for his hometown of Greencastle, Pennsylvania. Greencastle was a village or town operating under authority of the Putnam County commissioners until March 9, 1849, when it became a town by special act of the local legislature. Greencastle, Indiana, officially became a city after an election held on July 8, 1861. The first mayor of Greencastle was E. R. Kercheval, a member of the Freemason Temple Lodge #47. The city became the county seat of Putnam County. The population was 10,326 at the 2010 census. It is located near Interstate 70 approximately halfway between Terre Haute and Indianapolis in the west-central portion of the state. Greencastle is well known as being the location of DePauw University.


Greencastle is located at 39°38′32″N 86°51′22″W / 39.64222°N 86.85611°W / 39.64222; -86.85611 (39.642297, −86.855988).

According to the 2010 census, Greencastle has a total area of 5.291 square miles (13.70 km2), of which 5.24 square miles (13.57 km2) (or 99.04%) is land and 0.051 square miles (0.13 km2) (or 0.96%) is water.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 1,382
1860 2,096 51.7%
1870 3,227 54.0%
1880 3,644 12.9%
1890 4,390 20.5%
1900 3,661 −16.6%
1910 3,790 3.5%
1920 3,780 −0.3%
1930 4,613 22.0%
1940 4,872 5.6%
1950 6,888 41.4%
1960 8,506 23.5%
1970 8,852 4.1%
1980 8,403 −5.1%
1990 8,984 6.9%
2000 9,880 10.0%
2010 10,326 4.5%
2020 9,820 −4.9%
U.S. Decennial Census
13 Greencastle V-1
German V-1 mounted atop a limestone Victory Vee, located on the Putnam County Courthouse Square. The V-1, commonly known as a “buzz bomb,” was a flying bomb and precursor to the modern cruise missile.

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 10,326 people, 3,368 households, and 1,989 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,970.6 inhabitants per square mile (760.9/km2). There were 3,742 housing units at an average density of 714.1 per square mile (275.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 92.4% White, 2.7% African American, 0.3% Native American, 1.9% Asian, 0.9% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.5% of the population.

There were 3,368 households, of which 30.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.0% were married couples living together, 12.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.9% were non-families. 35.9% of all households were made up of individuals, and 15.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 2.93.

The median age in the city was 27.4 years. 19% of residents were under the age of 18; 28.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 19.7% were from 25 to 44; 18.6% were from 45 to 64; and 14.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 46.7% male and 53.3% female.

Historical Events and Places In Greencastle


  • John Herbert Dillinger, Jr. (June 22, 1903 – July 22, 1934) was an American gangster and bank-robber in the Depression-era United States. He was charged, but never convicted, with the murder of an East Chicago police officer whom he shot in the knee while fleeing the scene of his heist. John Dillinger's largest haul (i.e. bank robbery) was at the Central National Bank in Greencastle, Indiana, one of two banks he robbed in Indiana. In Our Past, Their Present: Historical Essays on Putnam County Indiana, John J. Baughman writes, "On Monday, October 23, 1933, four armed men entered the Central National Bank of Greencastle and escaped with $74,782.09. The Dillinger robbery became one of the major events of Greencastle history."
  • Since the Indiana Association of Communities and Towns (IACT) began awarding the "Green Communities of the Year" in 2008, only Greencastle has garnered the honor in back-to-back-to-back years.
  • In March 2011, Greencastle was one of two Indiana cities selected as a “Stellar Community” by the state of Indiana. Stellar Communities is a major grant program began this year by Indiana to stimulate major changes and spark growth in smaller communities. The city will receive approximately $19 million over three years in state funding to support various repair, renovation and revitalization projects.


Greencastle and the surrounding Putnam County communities are home to 20 historical sites according to the National Register of Historical Places.

In Greencastle:

  • The Appleyard, farm of Alexander C. Stevenson
  • The Boulders house
  • Brick Chapel United Methodist Church
  • Courthouse Square Historic District
  • Delta Kappa Epsilon Fraternity house
  • East College of DePauw University
  • Forest Hill Cemetery
  • Richard M. Hazelett house ("Sunny Hill")
  • Alfred Hirt House
  • McKim Observatory, DePauw University
  • F.P. Nelson house ("The Towers")
  • Old Greencastle Historic District
  • Lycurgus Stoner House
  • William C. Van Arsdel house ("The Elms")

Surrounding communities:

  • Samuel Brown house ("The Brick"), Roachdale
  • Melville F. McHaffie Farm ("Schuyler Arnold Seed Farm"), Stilesville
  • James Edington Montgomery O'Hair house, Brick Chapel
  • Putnam County Bridge No. 159 ("Reelsville Bridge"), Reelsville
  • Putnamville Presbyterian Church ("Putnamville Methodist Church"), Putnamville

Greencastle also has three historic neighborhoods – Old Greencastle, the Eastern Enlargement and the Northwood Neighborhood that were added to the National Register of Historical Places in 2011.


Humid continental climate is a climatic region typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely cold) winters. The Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Dfa"(Hot Summer Continental Climate).

Climate data for Greencastle, Indiana
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 2.2
Average low °C (°F) -7.2
Precipitation mm (inches) 69
Source: Weatherbase


Public schools

Greencastle's public schools are operated by the Greencastle Community School Corporation. The Greencastle School Corporation consists of one Central Office; one High School, Greencastle High School, which hosts grades 9th through 12th; one Middle School, Greencastle Middle School, which hosts grades 6th through 8th; one Intermediate School, Tzouanakis Intermediate School, which hosts grades 3rd through 5th and two Primary Schools, Martha J. Ridpath Primary School (also known as Ridpath Primary) and Deer Meadow Primary School which each host kindergarten through 2nd grade.

Private schools

Peace Lutheran School is a private school in Greencastle, Indiana, which according to their website is "an outreach of Peace Lutheran Church." It was founded in 1984 as a preschool. In 1995, kindergarten was added as a half-day program. The year 2002 marked the beginning of the Primary School with the addition of 5th grade. (In Indiana, Primary Schools are typically interpreted as 1st through 2nd, 3rd, or 4th grades.) As of 2011, the school hosts grades kindergarten through 6th grade.

Colleges and universities

DePauw University is a private national liberal arts college. It was founded as Indiana Asbury University in 1837 as an all men's school. In 1867, Laura Beswick, Mary Simmons, Alice Allen, and Bettie Locke Hamilton (then Bettie Locke), the chief founder of Kappa Alpha Theta, America's first college women's fraternity, became the University's first four female co-eds.

DePauw today has an enrollment of about 2400 students. Students hail from 42 states and 32 countries with a 20.4% multicultural enrollment. DePauw's liberal arts education gives students a chance to gain general knowledge outside of their direct area of study. DePauw consistently ranks among the top 50 liberal arts colleges in America in both U.S. News & World Report rankings and Kiplinger's “best value” list. In a 2009 Center for College Affordability & Productivity ranking published in Forbes magazine, DePauw was ranked No. 42 under “America’s Best Colleges.”

Ivy Tech Community College (also Ivy Tech) is the nation's largest statewide community college with single accreditation. A 33,300 square foot, $8.6 million Ivy Tech campus was completed in 2009 in Greencastle. The Ivy Tech branch in Greencastle is also assisted financially by The Putnam County Community Foundation.

Other educational facilities

Putnam County Public Library in Greencastle; Formerly Carnegie Public Library

Greencastle is the home of the Putnam County Public Library, a public library which serves patrons from Putnam County and surrounding counties. Services include books, books on CD, ebooks, movies, music, newspapers, magazines, computer and Internet access, Wi-fi, inter-library loan, programming for all ages, author series, book discussion groups and multiple public meeting rooms. The PCPL Local History and Genealogy Department is dedicated to collecting, preserving, and providing public access to Putnam County's historical records. As of 2017 the library began an adult literacy program, the Putnam Adult Literacy Services (PALS). In conjunction with the PALS program, the PALS Pups program allows children to read to the certified "good citizen" dogs. The Putnam County Public Library is a Carnegie Library and was built in 1903. In 1996, a large addition made the library what it is today.

Greencastle also once had a municipal Carnegie library, which is now known as The William Weston Clarke Emison Museum of Art (otherwise known as The Emison Museum of Art or The Emison Art Center). The library became a museum in 1986, and was renamed to honor the financial contributions of James W. Emison, a longtime member of DePauw University's Board of Trustees and benefactor of the University, and other Emison family members. The building was constructed in 1908. The Emison Art Center was originally the Depauw University (then, Indiana Asbury University) campus library.

The Putnam County Museum houses a "permanent collection of nearly 2,000 Putnam County related artifacts offers the county residents and visitors a historical overview of the county, including its significance during the Civil War and a glimpse into everyday life of Putnam residents in the past. The Museum also showcases the Putnam County contemporary artists in revolving exhibits, featuring at least one new artist every month."

Notable people

  • William Atherton (soldier) (1793-1863)
  • Charles A. Beard (1874-1948) and Mary Ritter Beard (1876-1958), American historians
  • Samuel T. Busey (1833-1909), Civil War general and politician
  • Amalia Küssner Coudert (1863-1932), miniaturist
  • William Michael Crose (1867-1929), Governor of American Samoa
  • S. H. Dudley (1864-1947), singer and pioneer recording artist
  • Bob Flanigan (1926-2011), singer with The Four Freshmen
  • Glenn Gass, (born 1956) rock 'n' roll music educator
  • Jane Louise Kelly (born 1964), Federal appellate judge 8th Circuit
  • Eli Lilly lived in Greencastle for several years; he opened a drugstore in Greencastle in 1861
  • Alexander Campbell Stevenson (1802-1889), Indiana physician and state legislator
  • Jesse W. Weik (1857-1930), Abraham Lincoln biographer
  • Tad Robinson (born 1956), blues singer
  • Garfield Thomas Haywood (1880-1931), pastor and founder Pentecostal Assemblies of the World
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