About Us

 Building History 


Building 1954


he E. R. Jaques Co. , founded in 1877, has set on this particular land plot for well over 100 years. For 53 years, the name of E. R. Jaques & Co. has been symbolic with the progress of Thorntown. It started out in a small way in the year 1877, but grew over the years through good management until it was recognized as one of the leading firms of its kind in the Middle Western United States. The company’s home offices were located in Thorntown, but it had large branch offices in Lebanon, Veedersburg, Danville, IL and smaller branches were located in scores of other towns and cities throughout Indiana and Illinois.

The building in Thorntown is a substantial three-story brick and was conveniently located on the Big Four Railroad right-of-way. They were heavy buyers of poultry and eggs, wool and hides. This merchandise was shipped regularly to the market of New York and Chicago. Mr. Jaques had a huge interest in farming and business management, and he was always interested in those things which tended to further the interest of his beloved town of Thorntown. The E.R. Jaques Company, founded in 1877, continued in business until 1942 when the company building was sold to the Crystal Dairy Products. With the times changing in 1938, the business dropped the poultry business and built one of the first cold storage plants in the area – having one in Lebanon and Thorntown. They also expanded their business to handle appliances, radios, roofing paint and fresh fruit trucked in from Florida. The building has seen many tenants, but the one most modern adults remember was the Old Garment Factory. This factory was in existence for more than fifty years and many women from the area worked here up until the mid-eighties. They sewed and shipped pieces for such companies as JC Penny, Sears and Bobbie Brooks.

BobGillanThe current owners are the Sugar Creek Art Center, Inc and it has been renovated and opened as an art center since 2005. A local philanthropist by the name of Dr. Robert Gillan gave money for the building to be renovated and purchased the building and gifted it to the corporation upon his death in 2009. It is because of this man’s generosity that the Sugar Creek Art Center is in operation today and remains open to the public for their cultural enjoyment.

The Sugar Creek Art Center has been in operation since 2005 and we work only on a volunteer basis as a 501c3 not-for-profit organization. Artist studios are rented and that revenue along with donations, contributions, and grants enable us to maintain our current stability.

Please enjoy our establishment and return as often as possible to see the many things we have available for the public’s enjoyment.

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