About the Sugar Creek Art Center
The Sugar Creek Art Center operates as a 501(c)(3), not-for-profit organization and we operate on a volunteer basis only. Artist studios and events venues 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.
HISTORY OF THE BUILDING
The building that The Sugar Creek Art Center occupies bears the engraving, E. R. Jaques Co. near its roofline. E.R. Jaques Company was founded in 1877, and the building has stood on this land plot for well over 100 years.
For 53 years, the name of E. R. Jaques Co. was symbolic of progress for Thorntown. Starting small, the company grew through good management and diverse products, until it was recognized as one of the leading firms of its kind in the Midwest United States.
The company’s home offices were located in Thorntown, but they also had large branch offices in Lebanon and Veedersburg, Indiana, as well as Danville, Illinois, and smaller branches located in scores of other towns and cities throughout the two states.
E.R. Jaques Building, 1928
The building in Thorntown is a substantial three-story brick structure and was conveniently located along the Big Four Railroad right-of-way. The company was a heavy buyer of poultry, eggs, wool and hides. This merchandise was shipped regularly to the markets in New York and Chicago. Mr. Jaques had an interest in farming and business management. His interest and focus on those topics in turn furthered the interest of his beloved town of Thorntown.
With changing times in 1938, the company dropped the poultry business and built one of the first cold storage plants in the area, along with another in Lebanon. The company also expanded their business to handle appliances, radios, roofing paint and fresh fruit, trucked in from Florida. The E.R. Jaques Company continued to do business until 1942 when the facility was sold to Crystal Dairy Products.
Since then, the building has seen a number of tenants, but some locals remember when it was the Old Garment Factory. This factory was in existence for several decades and many women from the area worked here up until the mid-1980s. They sewed and shipped pieces for such companies as JC Penny, Sears and Bobbie Brooks.
The current owner of the building is Sugar Creek Art Center, Inc. and it was renovated and opened under the new name in 2005. A local philanthropist, Dr. Robert Gillan, gave money for renovations and the purchase of the building, gifting it to the corporation upon his death in 2009. It is because of the enthusiasm and vision of early board members and Dr. Gillan's generosity that The Sugar Creek Art Center operates today and remains open to the public for their cultural enjoyment.
Location and hours
Sunday – Friday: Closed
Thursday – Saturday: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
First Thursday exhibition opening receptions: 5 – 8 p.m.
Other times are available by appointment.
127 South Pearl Street,
Thorntown, Indiana 46071