Own a Castle
Indiana Landmarks recently took responsibility for a miniature gem in downtown Indianapolis—one of the oldest original White Castles. Indianapolis White Castle #3 opened in 1927 and is believed to be the third oldest building constructed by the national chain. When it served its last burger in 1979, it was the oldest continuously operating White Castle. Since then it has been used as a real estate office and a National Guard recruiting center.
White Castle was the first chain to offer hamburgers in a standardized take-out environment, a revolutionary move that paved the way for the fast food industry. In his history of the White Castle System, founder Billy Ingram claimed that he modeled his buildings on the Chicago Water Tower, with battlements and turrets.
Built only between 1925 and 1929, these high-style castles are a vanishing breed. The chain introduced buildings of enameled steel in 1929. The building originally featured “White Castle” spelled out in stained glass in transom windows.
Occupying an oddly shaped lot at the three-way intersection of Delaware Street, Walnut Street, and Fort Wayne Avenue, this property would make a great little office or restaurant. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the building is eligible for Historic Tax Credits for restoration.
Indiana Landmarks is repairing the masonry, matching the white glazed brick. When we sell the building, Indiana Landmarks will attach a protective covenant to the deed, guaranteeing that the building will regain its historic appearance through the restoration and be maintained in the future. The preservation organization’s real estate committee will set the sale price for the landmark once the masonry repairs are complete.