This town is the site of two utopian community experiments. The first were the Harmonists who had come here from Germany. The leader George Rapp created a very industrious and lively town with a bakery, store, brewery, vineyards, school…etc. They promoted equality amongst races and gender and educated all kids until age 14. But what is it with religious communities and celibacy?? It was suppose to be a celibate community but 18 babies were born during their ten years in Indiana. They were also waiting for the second coming of Jesus but when he didn’t come after 10 years, they went to Pennsylvania. After they left, another man Robert Owen bought the land and tried to start his version of utopia which was not religious- he actually banned church- but was knowledge based. As our tour guide told us they were thinkers and not doers so the experiment failed after 2 years.
The town now seems to be a result of a patroness and state funding that restored buildings and also had two buildings new erected by prominent architects. It’s a very peaceful and beautiful town where people are laid back and cordial…a nice place for long walks.