Toto Indiana Giant Indian
“Richards of Toto”
submitted by: Thomas Southwood
Yay! We have a new “Roadside Wander-er” in our midst! This is Tom’s first contribution … and I LOVE it 🙂
This giant Indian stands proudly at the “Richards of Toto” discount store in Toto, Indiana. I’m not sure of his origin (I emailed “Richards” to see if they know … and I’ll update if they respond). I’m pretty sure he isn’t a muffler man … perhaps one of the Pontiac car dealership Indians?? Either way, he’s a great addition!
It’s been confirmed several times that he is, indeed, the Indian who once welcomed visitors at the gate of the Enchanted Forest themepark before its demise. Thanks to all of the commenters for identifying him 🙂
16 thoughts on “Toto Indiana Giant Indian”
Awesome! I have a giant Indian on my ‘to do’ list. Hopefully I’ll get it in the next week or so. 🙂
I’m from Indiana and heading back for a few days next week. I never heard of Toto, though.
That’s right … you’re originally from South Bend area, yes?
I hadn’t heard of Toto before Tom sent this in either. In fact, I looked it up out of curiosity the night that I posted this:)
It’s about halfway between Plymouth and Valparaiso (south of 30)
The Indian out front was bought from Lakeville Salvage when they went out of business. It’s previous home was in Enchanted Forest outside of Chesterton, IN.
Mystery solved 🙂
Thanks for the info, Carol!
The Indian was made in Lake Station Indiana in the early 1970’s and was outside the gate at Enchanted Forest until it closed, then it was at Lakeville Salvage just East of Michigan City, then moved to its present location
I was the head of security for Enchanted Forest for a while. I remember the Indian well. It is definitely the one from there. That Indian and i have a lot of history together. I now live close to Richards, and seeing the Indian is like seeing an old friend. I love it!
Thanks for stopping in and sharing your recollection 🙂
Do you also remember an big Alfred Neuman head? It was said to be located on the roof of a building or perhaps it still had the body back then, he would have been the same height as the Indian and with matching pant legs but a shirt instead of bare chest. If you have any info or pictures please contact me at [email protected]
I grew up 7 miles from Toto in North Judson, IN. Since I had seen this Indian pretty much all the time I never questioned where it came from. Love Toto, need to go back there the next time I am visiting family.
I’m pretty sure that the NBC sitcom Parks and Recreation showed a photo of the Indian when the opening theme song was played.
I just watched the Parks and Recreation on Youtube … and I think you may be correct (as least it’s the same model). There is also a Muffler Man!
I was at Enchanted Forrest when they had the auction, we bought several things there. Our friend Rod McLean bought the Indian.my husband, Dennis, Rod & Bob Green loaded it on a flat bed trailer and took it to Lakeshore Wholesale on Hwy 20, between 35 and 39. It looked so funny going down the highway with his hand in the air. There it remained until Rod sold it to Richards when Lakeshore closed. Rod had it painted when he owned it and I think it was painted again at Richards.we were just there at Richards on the Saturday before it broken. Had our picture taken with it. It’s so sad people have to destroy things to have their fun.
The statue, as has been pointed out, began life, so to speak, at Enchanted Forest about 1960. It is indeed the type that more often was found in front of Pontiac dealerships (in fact, there is another one in Indiana with an equally checkered history that has ended up in downtown Montpelier). After Enchanted Forest closed, it stood for several years on the north side of US20 east of Michigan City at Lakeshore Sales. When they went out of business, a similar business in Toto bought him. Alas, in recent months, “Chief Toto” was badly vandalized. The figure is made of fiberglass, incidentally. (from my book_Remembrance, Faith, and Fancy: Outdoor Public Sculpture in Indiana_)
I was going through old family album, ran across a picture of Toto. I went to enchanted Forest as a child. Nice to see him again. There a similar Indian on Southside of Chicago on Pulaski. I thought you that was him. I am glad he have a home.