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Many of Indiana’s people take pride in a self-image derived largely from 19th-century America that values hard work, is oriented to the small town and medium-sized city, and is interested in maintaining the prerogatives of local self-determination.It is not by coincidence that the Indianan’s nickname, Hoosier, remains a symbol in the country’s lore for a kind of homespun wisdom, wit, and folksiness that harks back to what is popularly regarded as a less-hurried and less-complicated period of history.The climate of northwestern Indiana is modified greatly by its presence in the lee of Lake Michigan.Cold air passing over the warmer lake water in fall (October through December) and winter (January through March) induces heavy precipitation, and winter snowfall especially is several times greater than in other parts of the state.
Spring, with its generally erratic and unstable weather, is the season with the greatest number of tornadoes.
Thus, Indiana’s population is to some extent black and Hispanic in the urban north and mostly white in the less industrialized south.
Though generally considered a conservative and Republican stronghold, Indiana has voted into both state and national office nearly as many Democrats as Republicans. Population (2010) 6,483,802; (2016 est.) 6,633,053. Indiana forms part of the east-central lowlands that slope downward from the Appalachian Mountains to the Mississippi River.
Indiana Dunes—sand dunes along Lake Michigan—most of which have been removed from the public domain by industry and private homes.
This situation was remedied somewhat with the dedication in 1972 of Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.