The History and Establishment of the Historic Town of Homecroft
The increasing accessibility of the automobile and public transportation, as well as idealization of life in the countryside away from the problems of the city, spurred intense suburbanization in the United States in the period after World War I. Homecroft Historic District reflects the importance of interurban and trolley lines in the early suburban development of Indianapolis. The district has survived later suburbanization, retaining its character as a small satellite town.
Homecroft is located about four and one-half miles south of downtown beside Madison Avenue (the south leg of the Michigan Road of settlement times). In January of 1900, the Indianapolis, Columbus & Southern Interurban Company opened an interurban line on Madison Avenue from downtown Indianapolis to several southern Indiana towns.
The Frank E. Gates Real Estate Company bought the site in 1923 and named it Homecroft. Frank Gates and his son Oliver were partners, whose firm had developed subdivisions in Ohio and Michigan as well as Indiana. Homecroft is a typical 1920s suburb for middle-class families following the American dream to own their own homes. The Gates offered design services to prospective lot buyers based on model houses they had built. Others chose their own designs. Most homes are modest period styles popular at the time, one and one-and-a-half story brick or stone veneered houses with Tudor Revival or Colonial Revival elements. Sidewalks were installed in the 1930s by the Works Progress Administration, and Gates began planting maple trees on the lots after the sidewalks were added.
During the 1950s, the intervening space between the south side of Indianapolis and Homecroft filled with housing and commercial strips on Madison Avenue. Homecroft, however, still retains its remote suburban feeling and cohesiveness. This small middle-class suburb of well-kept single family homes shaded by mature maple trees is a significant illustration of suburban community planning and development.
Homecroft by the Numbers
7 miles south of Downtown Indianapolis
Perry Township Schools
Total 0.24 sq mi (0.62 km2)
Land 0.24 sq mi (0.62 km2)
Water 0 sq mi (0 km2)
Median Age: 41.2 years
32.2% 45 to 64
27.2% 25 to 44
The median income for a family is $73,859. Males have a median income of $56,563 versus $39,194 for females. About 1.3% of the population is below the poverty line.