The city was founded (1802) on the site of Fort Steuben (formerly Fort Finney) by veterans of George Rogers Clark 's Old Northwest expedition, who were given the land in gratitude for their services. The original town was built according to plans made by Thomas Jefferson , after whom it is named. It served (1813–16) as the temporary capital of Indiana Territory, and had an important steamboat-building industry in the 1800s.
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