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Terminal Lunch: 1943

Terminal Lunch: 1943

September 1943. "Greyhound bus station in Indianapolis." View full size. Medium-format negative by Esther Bubley for the Office of War Information.


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Double Eagle

The eagle perched on the ball atop the column, and its twin from the other side of the train shed, are the only things remaining of the former traction terminal. They can now be found flanking the steps of the old state museum (former Indianapolis city hall), albeit quite a bit more weathered than what is seen here.

Indy Bus Terminal

This was called the Traction Terminal when it opened in 1904 to centralize interurban train service in Indianapolis. These buses are parked in the old train shed. By the mid-1940s, interurban train service had ended, and "the tracks in the Traction Terminal were paved over for bus service. After construction of a new bus station, the train shed was torn down in 1968, and the terminal’s office building was razed in 1972. The Indianapolis Traction Terminal reputedly had been the largest traction terminal in the world."

For for photos, click here.

Greyhound in Indianapolis now operates out of the back end of Union Station. Not a place you want to go at 6 o'clock on a cold winter morning. And it would sure be nice to have the interurban trains back.


The Indiana State Capitol in the background is still standing, but the bus station on West Market Street is long gone. The Indiana Roof Ballroom (advertised in the posters below the Terminal Lunch sign) was an important musical and social venue that declined over the years, closing sometime in the '70s or '80s. Luckily, Indianapolis' downtown revival centered around the Circle Center Mall extended to the Indiana Roof. It's been beautifully rehabbed, preserving both the dance floor and the decor, which suggests being in the center of a Moorish village at twilight!

Royal Crown!

I'm the only person left who drinks RC, so it's great to see any old advertisements for it.

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