Tom Taggart

Tom Taggart was national chairman of the Democratic Party and a major force in Hoosier and Indianapolis politics. He was mayor of Indianapolis in the 1890s and was head of the national Democratic party from 1904 to 1908. This photo ran in association with an article concerning a hunting accident that injured one of Taggart's eyes.
I elected to include information about Taggart on First Super Speedway because I believe he was the man behind the much repeated story that Indianapolis Motor Speedway President Carl Fisher once considered French Lick, Indiana as the site for construction of the giant speedway he envisioned. Taggart probably influenced Fisher because of his vast network of political connections. His motive almost certainly was to create a draw to a French Lick resort - the French Link Springs Hotel - that Taggart owned with partner and Terre Haute Industrialist Crawford Fairbanks. Taggart also held an ownership position in the Denison Hotel one the premier facilities of early 20th century Indianapolis.

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