History & Current Facts
Ossian, Indiana, is a family-centered and friendly community located on State Road 1, ten miles south of Fort Wayne. The Town was incorporated in 1850 as home to people of primarily Scottish ancestry. Today, Ossian’s thriving population of over 3,300 continues its longstanding tradition of values and being a caring community. The Town of Ossian has been an Indiana Main Street Community since 2009.
The Town of Ossian was named after Ossian, regarded in legend as the greatest poet of Ireland. Ossian is the narrator of a cycle of epic poems, and he is attributed with their composition.
The name Ossian literally means “young deer” or fawn.
In 1750 Scottish poet James Macpherson visited the Scottish highlands looking for the lost and unrecorded poems of the third-century poet Ossian, son of Fingal. Macpherson claimed he collected word-of-mouth material in Scottish Gaelic, said to be from ancient sources. His translations of that material became the cycle of epic poems, and were published as The Works of Ossian in 1765. Critics of the time debated the work’s authenticity. The current consensus is that Macpherson largely composed the poems himself, drawing in part on traditional Gaelic poetry he had collected.