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Columbus, Indiana: Different by DesignColumbus, Indiana: Different by Design (2002)

DVD; approx. 87 minutes
Item #CI02

It may be a town of 36,000 people, but it ranks with five of America's biggest cities when it comes to architecture. Six of its buildings, built between 1942 and 1965, are National Historic Landmarks, and 60 other buildings sustain the Bartholomew County capital seat's reputation as a showcase of modern architecture.

This WTIU Production received a 2002 Regional Emmy Award Nomination.

Columbus, Indiana: Different by Design tells the story of the distinctive buildings—their special features, their architects, and the community that lives among them. The architects themselves, along with friends, family, colleagues, and clients tell the story. Among the featured structures are:

  • First Christian Church by Eliel Saarinen
  • Irwin Union Bank by Eero Saarinen, with landscape by Dan Kiley;and its addition by Kevin Roche
  • Residence of J. Irwin Miller by Eero Saarinen, with landscape by Dan Kiley
  • Mabel McDowell School by John Carl Warnecke
  • North Christian Church by Eero Saarinen
  • First Baptist Church by Harry Weese

The documentary also includes significant government and corporate structures designed by Robert Venturi, Kevin Roche, Paul Kennon, Myron Goldsmith, I.M. Pei, Cesar Pelli, Gunnar Birkerts, and other American and international architects.

Columbus residents interviewed on the program include Rene Campbell, J. Irwin Miller, Harry McCawley, Robert Stewart, and Brooke Tuttle. Bartholomew County resident and songwriter Tim Grimm is narrator for the program, and Paul Messing is composer of the original music.

Columbus, Indiana: Different by Design is a production of WTIU, Indiana University in association with Spellbound Productions, Inc.; Terrence Black, producer/director, and Nancy Callaway Fyffe, producer/writer; Steven Krahnke, executive producer.

Production of Columbus, Indiana: Different by Design was made possible by the generous support of The Columbus Area Visitors Center, Columbus Container Inc., and the Irwin-Sweeney-Miller Foundation.

Additional funding was provided by The Heritage Fund of Bartholomew County, Inc., the Columbus Economic Development Board, and Cummins Inc. Additional support comes from Frank Adams, Jr. & Associates, Johnson Ventures, Inc., Kramer Furniture & Cabinet Maker, and Textillery Weavers, and by an Historic Preservation Education Grant from the Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana, the Indiana Humanities Council, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Companion Web Site

Different by Design companion siteThe COMPANION WEB SITE was created to help kids learn about the historical and cultural context that surrounded the construction of eight key Columbus buildings.

It uses Flash movies featuring contemporary photos to create a narrative of life in the United States in the mid- to late-Twentieth Century.

We think adults will enjoy it too!