12945 IN-57 Evansville, IN 47725
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about us

Although the origins of the Frontier Restaurant and Bar in Daylight, Indiana are not officially documented, it is well known by families that have lived here for generations, that Daylight had its origins around 1884 when railroad tracks were laid across North Green River Rd.

Eventually the old rail workers traveling through the area, set up a box car, removed the wheels and used it as storage and possibly a place to rest. When the train left Evansville in the dark of early morning, by the time it made it to the boxcar, it would be “Daylight” and that’s how the little town got it name.

In time the little town grew, had a Post Office in 1900, a few businesses and a bar. It is thought that the Frontier is situated fairly close to where the old boxcar was located over a century ago on what is now Indiana Hwy 57. The railroad tracks are still there, and the Frontier sits just a stone throw away from the tracks that were laid in 1884!

The Frontier as we know it today came to be in about 1954. It was just a cinder block saloon with no restaurant.

It burned down in the early 1990’s and was rebuilt as a bar with a small restaurant. Over the years it has changed ownership a few times. It is currently owned by Garrett and Melissa Hartig. Both Garret and Melissa have strong ties to the community with Garrett’s growing up on Evansville’s North side and Melissa growing up in the small community of Elberfeld, in Northern Warrick County. The Hartig’s goal for the Frontier is to not only retain its history along with its nostalgic and friendly bar atmosphere, but to also provide excellent food and service to all who visit!

Below is a poem called “How Daylight Got its Name,” written by Billy C Young, whose family has resided in Daylight for decades.

The Frontier Bar circa late 1950's

"How Daylight Got its Name"

This little poem you are about to read
Will not blow your mind or cause you to succeed

It will tell the tale of Daylight town
And about some of the people that were around

At this location there were trees everywhere
And hardly any people as history will bare

They dropped off a boxcar by the side of the tracks
And took off the wheels so it wouldn’t roll back

The train would then stop and leave lots of stuff
And then start again with a huff and a puff

It would leave Evansville in the dark of the day
And arrive at the boxcar when the sun arose so they say

Then the old timers that ran the train
Said we’ll be in Daylight snow, shine or rain

The Grimwood family owned most of the lawn
And they sold it off without a great plan

Then the railroad built four shotgun shacks
So the railroad workers could live near the tracks

Grimwood built a big house on the south end of town
And he dug three wells where water was found

Then a big red tavern was built in the town
The drinkers would come and then dance on the ground

The beer drinkers would buggy their asses to here
Then stay at the tavern til the fun did appear

They all said Daylight should be the name of this town
Because the trains are here till light comes around

So that’s the two stories of how the town got its name
If you don’t believe it, it sure is a shame

Then some saw a chance on how to make money
They built two stores and sold milk and honey

The farmers would come to buy food, feed and beer
And other things were happening, I hear

A feed mill arose to sell feed and grind grain
And the building was set by the tracks and the train

Horses and buggies were losing out
As the Model T Ford was coming about

These mechanical contraptions needed to be fixed
And the man at the tavern said he has got this

So the tavern was purchased by a man named Minner
He could fix everything and garage was a winner

Then a one legged man by the name of Young
Sold roofing and gutter and gutter he hung

He also could fix everything of that day
His wealth did increase, the people would say

Many other businesses arose in this town
And some men and women were looking around

So this poem has revealed how the town got its name
And your thoughts about Daylight will not be the same

Here in Daylight it really never gets dark
Cause the people of Daylight throw quite a spark

Their sparks really light up the whole Daylight town
And the darkness leaves and light does abound

The saying around you will always hear
It’s always Daylight at the Frontier

by billy c. young