The New International Encyclopædia/New Harmony
NEW HARMONY. A town in Posey County, Ind., 15 miles north of Mount Vernon, the county-seat, on the Wabash River and on a branch of the Illinois Central Railroad (Map: Indiana, B 4). It has the free library of the Workingmen's Institute with some 15,000 volumes, founded in 1838. There are flouring and planing mills, brick works, and minor industries. Population, in 1890, 1197; in 1900, 1341.
New Harmony was settled in 1805 by a community of Harmonists (q.v.), who, in 1824, sold out to Robert Owen and moved to Economy, Pa. In 1825 Owen organized a ‘Preliminary Society,’ and invited here ‘the industrious and well disposed of all nations.’ There was to be a community of goods according to age, religious worship was to be replaced by a series of ‘moral lectures,’ and children, when two years of age, were to be taken from their parents and educated by trained teachers. Within a few months the village became a ‘scene of idleness and revelry,’ but in 1826 Owen returned, and for a time the settlement prospered. Later in the year, disagreements arising, the original community separated to form three communities—New Harmony, Maclure, and Feiba Pevla—and in a short time the whole experiment was abandoned. William Maclure, one of the original leaders, then bought part of the land and founded a ‘school of industry,’ which after a short time was discontinued. Consult Lockwood, The New Harmony Communities (Marion, Ind., 1902).