From Indiana’s infancy to the front door of the Statehouse

Corydon, Indiana is a small town approximately 30 miles west of Louisville that is best known for being Indiana’s first state capital. The Corydon Group, LLC was named after the small town because the town and the firm are both unique to Indiana.

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Original Corydon Capitol

Corydon was founded by General William Henry Harrison (later the 9th President of the United States) who decided that the area where Big Indian Creek and Little Indian Creek met to become Indiana Creek was a great place for a town. However, the town was not officially founded until 1808 when Harrison sold the land to Harvey Heth. Heth donated the town square to the public, and it later became the location of the first capitol building. The state’s original constitution was composed in Corydon, and Indiana was granted its statehood in 1816. Corydon remained Indiana’s capital until 1825 when Indianapolis was named the new state capital due to a northward shift in Indiana’s population.

The Corydon Group story dates back to 2000 when Chris Gibson, shortly after completing law school and having spent several years in various Statehouse roles, formed the independent lobbying firm Gibson & Associates, Inc. After experiencing several years of sustained growth, it was determined that a new firm name was appropriate one that better exemplified the level of service that our clients have come to know and expect.

The name “Corydon” was chosen for several reasons. Corydon, as Indiana’s first state capital (Vincennes served as Indiana’s territorial capital from 1800 – 1813) provides a fitting backdrop for our motto – “First in Public Affairs.” The name also serves as a tribute to Governor Frank O’Bannon, who hailed from Corydon and passed away shortly before the name was chosen. Finally, at the time the firm changed its name to The Corydon Group, our office space was located on the site of the former Indianapolis Press Club. Governor O’Bannon was a longstanding and active member of the Indianapolis Press Club having worked for and run his family-owned newspaper in Corydon – a paper still owned and operated by the O’Bannon family today.

The firm’s logo is an artist’s rendering of the cupola that stands atop the original capitol building in Corydon. That logo, along with The Corydon Group’s offices, now sits at 125 West Market Street in the shadow of Indiana’s current Statehouse. The so-called “Sentinel Building”, which was purchased by Chris Gibson and Lou Belch in 2012, was built in 1892 by John Schumacher who had helped complete the Indiana Statehouse just four years prior in October of 1888. Ironically, Schumacher built 125 West Market to house the Sentinel newspaper and Sentinel Printing, Inc. which had roots back to 1822 having published the first Indianapolis newspaper – a coincidence of which we are confident Governor O’Bannon would have approved.

Chris and Lou are proud to have been able to bring a small part of Indiana’s statehood beginnings to the front steps of our state’s current seat of government.