Descend into one of the city’s most unique underground spaces, the Catacombs beneath Indianapolis City Market’s west plaza, as guides explain its place in downtown history. Tourgoers will not see bones or crypts, but they will enjoy brick-lined views of two historic landmarks: Indianapolis City Market and the cellar of Tomlinson Hall.

The City Market is a historic destination for fresh groceries and produce, now just as popular for lunching business people and residents thanks to the many cafes and delis speckled throughout. Less evident to visitors is its long history as a market — dating back to the late 1880s, when the catacombs were built.

Tunneled beneath the city streets with limestone and brick archways, the catacombs were used to transport and store meats and produce to be sold in the market before the days of refrigeration. The 20,000 square-foot subterranean area stayed cooler than the streets above, so they were used to help preserve food for the entire market overnight, waiting to be brought back aboveground the next day.

More than a century later, many parts of the catacombs remain remarkably intact, while others are crumbling to their limestone foundations. Thanks to the preservation of the City Market, the Indianapolis catacombs are one of only a dozen or so catacomb sites that still exist in America.

Indiana Landmarks presents these tours in partnership with Indianapolis City Market. Tours depart from the second floor of Indianapolis City Market (222 E Market Street, Indianapolis). Groups will encounter two flights of stairs and uneven dirt floors over the course of 30 minutes.

According to; Source of photos: the internet