A History of Batesville, Indiana Batesville Chamber of Commerce
United States Chamber of Commerce
President William Howard Taft suggested the need for a nationwide organization to deal with the needs of businesses in the United States during a speech on December 7, 1912. Heeding his call, over 700 delegates representing a plethora of businesses from across the United States met in Washington DC. On April 22, 1912 this body of delegates established the United States Chamber of Commerce. Today the three million Chamber members represent every type of business in the United States.
Among the first references to a group formed to improve the interests of Batesville appeared in March, 1891 with the formation of "Improvement Committee". Chaired by W. T. Greeman, David Macallum served as vice president R. N. Papet as secretary and Joseph Spiegel as treasurer. The group apparently received $9.00 from a group that had previously formed, but disbanded. This group eventually took the name of the Batesville Board of Trade.
Batesville Board of Trade
As per a report issued by the organization on February 4, 1892 the Board of Trade consisted of 33 members. The officers remained the same with the exception of Daniel Jungok, who took the place of R. N. Papet as Secretary. The Board held meetings on Friday evenings at Town Hall. The next year the Board of Trade took an active role in community growth by advocating for the establishment of a number of new industries. These included a foundry, woolen mill and machine shop. The organization created a sub organization they called the Purchasing and Building Committee. The Board of Trade constructed a building for this committee using volunteer labor. The Fisher Brothers lumber mill sawed 3,000 feet of lumber for the building and the Shrader and Krieger company roofed the building, charging only the cost of the material used. Batesville's business economy, as well and that of communities around the country, collapsed with the financial panic of 1893.
Batesville Commercial Club
The Batesville Board of Trade apparently dissolved sometime after 1895, the last year of record, and 1907. The Batesville Commercial Club organized on October 31, 1907. The directors of this organization included Donald McCallum Peter Holmer, Joseph Luesse, A. J. Lindenmier, John Meyer and M. F. Bohland. The club underwent a reorganization in July 1910.
Retail Merchants Association
Various business men's organizations had emerged, and dissolved, during the years 1910 through 1917. The Retail Merchants Association formed in on January 20, 1917 to answer the needs of the local retail merchants.
Chamber of Commerce
In 1920, apparently, the Chamber of Commerce organized from some members of the Commercial Club, Business Men's Club and Batesville Board of Trade organizations. A member of the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce, B. R. Inman, helped with the initial steps of organizing the Chamber had 119 members and listed Fred Ritter, George Johnanning and Niel Macallum as directors. As one of its first ventures, the Chamber sponsored the establishment of the American Legion. The Batesville Business Men's Club merged with the Batesville Chamber of Commerce in 1928 with the Business Men's Club retaining it identity by becoming a as a sub branch of the Batesville Chamber.
Batesville Chamber of Commerce
2 W. Pearl Street
Batesville, IN 47006