1. The Fred J Reynolds Historical Genealogy Department of Allen County Public Library (main branch) is the largest public genealogy department in North America. It has 350,000 printed volumes, and 513,000 items on microfilm and microfiche.

2. Fort Wayne hosted the first professional baseball game ever played on May 4, 1871. The Fort Wayne Kekiongas played the Cleveland Forest Citys. We won by default, 2-0, because of a rain out in the 9th inning.

3. There have been plenty of Fort Wayne locals who have made it big—Stephen King (the horror genre author), Jenna Fischer (Pam from “The Office”), Shelley Long (Diane from “Cheers”), and Dick York (Darrin from the classic “Betwitched”).

4. Fort Wayne has a ton of strange and random laws on its books. For instance, did you know it is illegal to drink from your own beer bottle in this city? You must pour it into a glass first. Spiteful gossip has also been outlawed. Perhaps the silliest rule of all: Fort Wayne men who like to give kisses cannot have a moustache!

5. The Lakeside Rose Garden is one of the largest rose gardens in the country. We’ve got over 2,000 roses on display.

6. With around 360 churches in Fort Wayne, we’ve been nicknamed the City of Churches since the late 1800s.

7. Another nickname, the Summit City, comes from our position along the Wabash and Erie Canal. We were the highest point along the canal, but when the railroad was built through the city only a dozen or so years later, the canal proved more of a monetary burden than Fort Wayne could afford and it was closed.

8. John Wayne, the famous Western actor, was originally given the stage name Anthony Wayne (Fort Wayne’s namesake), but Fox Studios decided to change it. John Wayne’s birth name was Marion Robert Morrison.

9. Speaking of Anthony Wayne, he was called “Mad Anthony” because of his quick temper. He was prideful, and hated being challenged. However, he was also reported to be very loyal to the soldiers that fought under him, and tried to improve their conditions as best he could. Anthony Wayne was a general during the Revolutionary War.

10. Not only is Fort Wayne home to the first professional baseball game, but we are also the birthplace of the NBA. Carl Bennet, a Fort Wayne local, mediated the merger between two existing basketball leagues (the Basketball Association of America and the National Basketball League) with Fred Zollner and Maurice Podoloff in 1948. In fact, the deal was made from the comfort of Bennet’s Fort Wayne home.