The city's economy was substantially based on manufacturing, ushering in an era of innovation with several notable inventions and developments coming out of the city over the years, such as gasoline pumps (1885), the refrigerator (1913), and in 1972, the first home video game console.
Aviation arrived in 1919 with the opening of the city's first airport, Smith Field.
The Fort Wayne Moraine follows two of the city's three rivers: the St. Land east of the moraine includes the former Great Black Swamp, a lacustrine plain formed by Glacial Lake Maumee.
In 1790, after the United States achieved independence, President George Washington ordered the United States Army to secure Indiana Territory. The population topped 2,000 when the town was incorporated as the City of Fort Wayne on February 22, 1840. As influential as the canal was to the city's earliest development, it quickly became obsolete after briefly competing with the city's first railroad, the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne and Chicago Railway, completed in 1854.According to the 2010 census, Fort Wayne has a total area of 110.834 square miles (287.06 km Receding glaciers eroded the land, depositing an evenly distributed layer of sediment during the last glacial period.The most distinguishable topographical feature is Cedar Creek Canyon, just north of the city proper near Huntertown. The two rivers converge to form the Maumee, which eventually empties into Lake Erie.The most important geographical feature of the area is the short distance overland between the Three Rivers system, which eventually flows to the Atlantic, and the Wabash system, which eventually flows to the Gulf of Mexico.This came to be the "portage" or carrying place, over which travelers could transport their cargoes from one system to the next.Marys River and Chicago, Fort Wayne and Eastern Railroad separate the northwest and southwest quadrants.Fort Wayne's early-20th century development was influenced by the City Beautiful movement and centered on a "park and boulevard plan" conceived by urban planner Charles Mulford Robinson in 1909 and finalized by landscape architect George Kessler in 1912.It is the principal city of the Fort Wayne metropolitan area, consisting of Allen, Wells, and Whitley counties, a combined population of 419,453 as of 2011.Once a booming manufacturing town located in what became known as the Rust Belt, Fort Wayne's economy in the 21st century is based upon distribution, transportation and logistics, healthcare, professional and business services, leisure and hospitality, and financial services.This area at the confluence of rivers was long occupied by successive cultures of indigenous peoples. It was the capital of the Miami nation and related Algonquian tribes.The Miami tribe established its settlement of Kekionga at the confluence of the Maumee, St. The French built Fort Miami in 1697 as part of a group of forts and trading posts built between Quebec and St. In 1721, a few years after Bissot's death, Fort Miami was replaced by Fort St. Increasing tension between France and Great Britain developed over control of the territory.