Tucked away near the Illinois border is the town of New Harmony, Ind. Population: 916. Ambiance: captivating.
Founded in 1814 by the Harmonie Society, a group from Germany seeking religious freedom, the community built more than 180 structures of frame, brick and log. Although self-sufficient, in 1824, citing divine guidance, they relocated to Pennsylvania, selling out to industrialist Robert Owen, who sought to establish a model “Community of Equality.”
Owen’s Utopian dream failed. What remains, even to this day, are contributions to scientific and educational theory and practice. And, of course, a hidden treasure of a town, perfect for a weekend getaway. A step back in time, a romantic rendezvous.
New Harmony Inn offers 90 beautifully appointed, contemporary rooms or four historical guesthouses with private gardens. For dining, there’s the delightful Red Geranium, the Yellow Tavern, the White House and the Church Street Gallery & Coffee House.
This is a town for walking or, if you prefer, for renting golf carts from the Atheneum, the starkly contrasting visitors center overlooking the Wabash River. Stroll hand in hand through the Harmonist Labyrinth, a springtime-lush foliage maze and discover the small temple in the center.
Commemorating the town’s heritage of religious freedom, architect Philip Johnson in 1960 designed a breathtaking Roofless Church featuring a dome in the shape of an inverted rosebud. His inspiration: “Only one roof, the sky, could embrace all worshiping humanity.”
New Harmony awaits you — to be embraced, inspired, rejuvenated.