Place:Connecticut, United States

NameConnecticut
Alt namesCTsource: Webster's Geographical Dictionary (1988) p 1256
Conn
Connecticuttsource: common misspelling
Colony of Connecticutsource: Help:Place pages
Connecticut Colonysource: Help:Place pages
TypeState
Coordinates42.05°N 73.483°W
Located inUnited States     (1788 - )
Also located inNew England, United States     (1788 - )
Contained Places
Unknown
Titicus
Area
Connecticut Western Reserve ( 1662 - 1800 )
County
Fairfield ( 1666 - )
Hartford ( 1666 - )
Litchfield ( 1751 - )
Middlesex ( 1785 - )
New Haven ( 1666 - )
New London ( 1666 - 1785 )
Tolland ( Oct 1785 - )
Windham ( 12 May 1726 - )
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Connecticut is the southernmost state in the New England region of the United States. As of the 2010 Census, it has the highest per-capita income, Human Development Index (0.962), and median household income in the United States. It is bordered by Rhode Island to the east, Massachusetts to the north, New York to the west, and Long Island Sound to the south. Its capital is Hartford and its most populous city is Bridgeport. It is part of New England, although portions of it are often grouped with New York and New Jersey as the Tri-state area. The state is named for the Connecticut River which approximately bisects the state. The word "Connecticut" is derived from various anglicized spellings of an Algonquian word for "long tidal river".

Connecticut's first European settlers were Dutchmen who established a small, short-lived settlement called Fort Hoop in Hartford at the confluence of the Park and Connecticut Rivers. Half of Connecticut was initially part of the Dutch colony New Netherland, which included much of the land between the Connecticut and Delaware Rivers, although the first major settlements were established in the 1630s by the English. Thomas Hooker led a band of followers from the Massachusetts Bay Colony and founded the Connecticut Colony; other settlers from Massachusetts founded the Saybrook Colony and the New Haven Colony. The Connecticut and New Haven colonies established documents of Fundamental Orders, considered the first constitutions in America. In 1662, the three colonies were merged under a royal charter, making Connecticut a crown colony. This was one of the Thirteen Colonies which rejected British rule in the American Revolution.

Connecticut is the third smallest state by area, the 29th most populous, and the fourth most densely populated[1] of the 50 states. It is known as the "Constitution State", the "Nutmeg State", the "Provisions State", and the "Land of Steady Habits".[2] It was influential in the development of the federal government of the United States.

The Connecticut River, Thames River, and ports along Long Island Sound have given Connecticut a strong maritime tradition which continues today. The state also has a long history of hosting the financial services industry, including insurance companies in Hartford and hedge funds in Fairfield County.

Contents

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

The name Connecticut is derived from the Algonquian word that has been translated as "long tidal river" and "upon the long river", referring to the Connecticut River. The Connecticut region was inhabited by multiple Indian tribes before European settlement and colonization, including the Mohegans, the Pequots, and the Paugusetts.

Colonial period

The first European explorer in Connecticut was Dutchman Adriaen Block, who explored the region in 1614. Dutch fur traders then sailed up the Connecticut River, which they called Versche Rivier ("Fresh River"), and built a fort at Dutch Point in Hartford that they named "House of Hope".

The Connecticut Colony was originally a number of separate, smaller settlements at Windsor, Wethersfield, Saybrook, Hartford, and New Haven. The first English settlers came in 1633 and settled at Windsor, and then at Wethersfield the following year. John Winthrop the Younger of Massachusetts received a commission to create Saybrook Colony at the mouth of the Connecticut River in 1635.

The main body of settlers came in one large group in 1636. They were Puritans from Massachusetts Bay Colony led by Thomas Hooker, who established the Connecticut Colony at Hartford. The Quinnipiack Colony was established by John Davenport, Theophilus Eaton, and others at New Haven in March 1638. The New Haven Colony had its own constitution called "The Fundamental Agreement of the New Haven Colony", signed on June 4, 1639.

The settlements were established without official sanction of the English Crown, and each was an independent political entity. In 1662, Winthrop traveled to England and obtained a charter from Charles II which united the settlements of Connecticut. Historically important colonial settlements included Windsor (1633), Wethersfield (1634), Saybrook (1635), Hartford (1636), New Haven (1638), Fairfield (1639), Guilford (1639), Milford (1639), Stratford (1639), Farmington (1640), Stamford (1641), and New London (1646).

The Pequot War marked the first major clash between colonists and Indians in New England. The Pequots reacted with increasing aggression to Colonial settlements in their territory—while simultaneously taking lands from the Narragansett and Mohegan tribes. Settlers responded to a murder in 1636 with a raid on a Pequot village on Block Island; the Pequots laid siege to Saybrook Colony's garrison that autumn, then raided Wethersfield in the spring of 1637. Colonists declared war on the Pequots, organized a band of militia and allies from the Mohegan and Narragansett tribes, and attacked a Pequot village on the Mystic River, with death toll estimates ranging between 300 and 700 Pequots. After suffering another major loss at a battle in Fairfield, the Pequots asked for a truce and peace terms.

The western boundaries of Connecticut have been subject to change over time. The Hartford Treaty with the Dutch was signed on September 19, 1650, but it was never ratified by the British. According to it, the western boundary of Connecticut ran north from Greenwich Bay for a distance of , "provided the said line come not within 10 miles of Hudson River."[3][4] This agreement was observed by both sides until war erupted between England and The Netherlands in 1652. Conflict continued concerning colonial limits until the Duke of York captured New Netherland in 1664.[3][4]

On the other hand, Connecticut's original Charter in 1662 granted it all the land to the "South Sea"—that is, to the Pacific Ocean. Most Colonial royal grants were for long east-west strips. Connecticut took its grant seriously and established a ninth county between the Susquehanna River and Delaware River named Westmoreland County. This resulted in the brief Pennamite Wars with Pennsylvania.

Yale College was established in 1701, providing Connecticut with an important institution to educate clergy and civil leaders. The Congregational church dominated religious life in the colony and, by extension, town affairs in many parts.

American Revolution

Connecticut designated four delegates to the Second Continental Congress who signed the Declaration of Independence: Samuel Huntington, Roger Sherman, William Williams, and Oliver Wolcott.

Connecticut's legislature authorized the outfitting of six new regiments in 1775, in the wake of the clashes between British regulars and Massachusetts militia at Lexington and Concord. There were some 1,200 Connecticut troops on hand at the Battle of Bunker Hill in June 1775.

In 1777, the British got word of Continental Army supplies in Danbury, and they landed an expeditionary force of some 2,000 troops in Westport. This force then marched to Danbury and destroyed homes and much of the depot. Continental Army troops and militia led by General David Wooster and General Benedict Arnold engaged them on their return march at Ridgefield in 1777.

For the winter of 1778–79, General George Washington decided to split the Continental Army into three divisions encircling New York City, where British General Sir Henry Clinton had taken up winter quarters. Major General Israel Putnam chose Redding as the winter encampment quarters for some 3,000 regulars and militia under his command. The Redding encampment allowed Putnam's soldiers to guard the replenished supply depot in Danbury and to support any operations along Long Island Sound and the Hudson River Valley. Some of the men were veterans of the winter encampment at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania the previous winter. Soldiers at the Redding camp endured supply shortages, cold temperatures, and significant snow, with some historians dubbing the encampment "Connecticut's Valley Forge".

The state was also the launching site for a number of raids against Long Island orchestrated by Samuel Holden Parsons and Benjamin Tallmadge, and provided men and material for the war effort, especially to Washington's army outside New York City. General William Tryon raided the Connecticut coast in July 1779, focusing on New Haven, Norwalk, and Fairfield. New London and Groton Heights were raided in September 1781 by Benedict Arnold, who had turned traitor to the British.

19th century

Early national period and industrial revolution

Connecticut ratified the U.S. Constitution on January 9, 1788, becoming the fifth state.[5] The state prospered during the era following the American Revolution, as mills and textile factories were built and seaports flourished from trade and fisheries.

In 1786, Connecticut ceded territory to the U.S. government that became part of the Northwest Territory. The state retained land extending across the northern part of present-day Ohio called the Connecticut Western Reserve. The Western Reserve section was settled largely by people from Connecticut, and they brought Connecticut place names to Ohio.

Connecticut made agreements with Pennsylvania and New York which extinguished her land claims within those states' boundaries and created the Connecticut Panhandle. The state then ceded the Western Reserve in 1800 to the federal government,[6] which brought it to its present boundaries (other than minor adjustments with Massachusetts).

The British blockade during the War of 1812 hurt exports and bolstered the influence of Federalists who opposed the war. The cessation of imports from Britain stimulated the construction of factories to manufacture textiles and machinery. Connecticut came to be recognized as a major center for manufacturing, due in part to the inventions of Eli Whitney and other early innovators of the Industrial Revolution.

The state was known for its political conservatism, typified by its Federalist party and the Yale College of Timothy Dwight. The foremost intellectuals were Dwight and Noah Webster, who compiled his great dictionary in New Haven. Religious tensions polarized the state, as the Congregational Church struggled to maintain traditional viewpoints, in alliance with the Federalists. The failure of the Hartford Convention in 1814 hurt the Federalist cause, with the Democratic-Republican Party gaining control in 1817.

Connecticut had been governed under the "Fundamental Orders" since 1639, but the state adopted a new constitution in 1818.

Civil War era

Connecticut manufacturers played a major role in supplying the Union forces with weapons and supplies during the Civil War. The state furnished 55,000 men, formed into thirty full regiments of infantry, including two in the U.S. Colored Troops, with several Connecticut men becoming generals. The Navy attracted 250 officers and 2,100 men, and Glastonbury native Gideon Welles was Secretary of the Navy. James H. Ward of Hartford was the first U.S. Naval Officer killed in the Civil War. Connecticut casualties included 2,088 killed in combat, 2,801 dying from disease, and 689 dying in Confederate prison camps.

A surge of national unity in 1861 brought thousands flocking to the colors from every town and city. However, as the war became a crusade to end slavery, many Democrats (especially Irish Catholics) pulled back. The Democrats took a pro-slavery position and included many Copperheads willing to let the South secede. The intensely fought 1863 election for governor was narrowly won by the Republicans.

Second industrial revolution

Connecticut's extensive industry, dense population, flat terrain, and wealth encouraged the construction of railroads starting in 1839. By 1840, of line were in operation, growing to in 1850 and in 1860.

The New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad, called the New Haven or "The Consolidated", became the dominant Connecticut railroad company after 1872. J. P. Morgan began financing the major New England railroads in the 1890s, dividing territory so that they would not compete. The New Haven purchased 50 smaller companies, including steamship lines, and built a network of light rails (electrified trolleys) that provided inter-urban transportation for all of southern New England. By 1912, the New Haven operated over of track with 120,000 employees.

In 1875, the first telephone exchange in the world was established in New Haven.

20th century

World War I

When World War I broke out in 1914, Connecticut became a major supplier of weaponry to the U.S. military; by 1918, 80% of the state's industries were producing goods for the war effort. Remington Arms in Bridgeport produced half the small-arms cartridges used by the U.S. Army, with other major suppliers including Winchester in New Haven and Colt in Hartford.

Connecticut was also an important U.S. Navy supplier, with Electric Boat receiving orders for 85 submarines, Lake Torpedo Boat building more than 20 subs, and the Groton Iron Works building freighters. On June 21, 1916, the U.S. Navy made Groton the site for its East Coast submarine base and school.

The state enthusiastically supported the American war effort in 1917 and 1918, with large purchases of war bonds, a further expansion of industry, and an emphasis on increasing food production on the farms. Thousands of state, local, and volunteer groups mobilized for the war effort and were coordinated by the Connecticut State Council of Defense. Manufacturers wrestled with manpower shortages; Waterbury's American Brass and Manufacturing Company was running at half capacity, so the federal government agreed to furlough soldiers to work there.

Interwar period

In 1919, J. Henry Roraback started the Connecticut Light & Power Co. which became the state's dominant electric utility. In 1925, Frederick Rentschler spurred the creation of Pratt & Whitney in Hartford to develop engines for aircraft; the company became an important military supplier in World War II and one of the three major manufacturers of jet engines in the world.

On September 21, 1938, the most destructive storm in New England history struck eastern Connecticut, killing hundreds of people. The eye of the "Long Island Express" passed just west of New Haven and devastated the Connecticut shoreline between Old Saybrook and Stonington from the full force of wind and waves, even though they had partial protection by Long Island. The hurricane caused extensive damage to infrastructure, homes, and businesses. In New London, a 500-foot (150 m) sailing ship was driven into a warehouse complex, causing a major fire. Heavy rainfall caused the Connecticut River to flood downtown Hartford and East Hartford. An estimated 50,000 trees fell onto roadways.

World War II

The advent of lend-lease in support of Britain helped lift Connecticut from the Great Depression, with the state a major production center for weaponry and supplies used in World War II. Connecticut manufactured 4.1% of total U.S. military armaments produced during World War II, ranking ninth among the 48 states, with major factories including Colt for firearms, Pratt & Whitney for aircraft engines, Chance Vought for fighter planes, Hamilton Standard for propellers, and Electric Boat for submarines and PT boats. In Bridgeport, General Electric produced a significant new weapon to combat tanks: the bazooka.

On May 13, 1940, Igor Sikorsky made an untethered flight of the first practical helicopter. The helicopter saw limited use in World War II, but future military production made Sikorsky Aircraft's Stratford plant Connecticut's largest single manufacturing site by the start of the 21st century.

Post-World War II economic expansion

Connecticut lost some wartime factories following the end of hostilities, but the state shared in a general post-war expansion that included the construction of highways and resulting in middle-class growth in suburban areas.

Prescott Bush represented Connecticut in the U.S. Senate from 1952 to 1963; his son George H.W. Bush and grandson George W. Bush both became Presidents of the United States. In 1965, Connecticut ratified its current constitution, replacing the document that had served since 1818.

In 1968, commercial operation began for the Connecticut Yankee Nuclear Power Plant in East Haddam; in 1970, the Millstone Nuclear Power Station began operations in Waterford. In 1974, Connecticut elected Democratic Governor Ella T. Grasso, who became the first woman in any state to be elected governor.

Late 20th century

Connecticut's dependence on the defense industry posed an economic challenge at the end of the Cold War. The resulting budget crisis helped elect Lowell Weicker as governor on a third-party ticket in 1990. Weicker's remedy was a state income tax which proved effective in balancing the budget, but only for the short-term. He did not run for a second term, in part because of this politically unpopular move.

In 1992, initial construction was completed on Foxwoods Casino at the Mashantucket Pequots reservation in eastern Connecticut, which became the largest casino in the Western Hemisphere. Mohegan Sun followed four years later.

Early 21st century

In 2000, presidential candidate Al Gore chose Senator Joe Lieberman as his running mate, marking the first time that a major party presidential ticket included someone of the Jewish faith. Gore and Lieberman fell five votes short of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney in the Electoral College. In the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, 65 state residents were killed, mostly Fairfield County residents who were working in the World Trade Center. In 2004, Republican Governor John G. Rowland resigned during a corruption investigation, later pleading guilty to federal charges. Connecticut was hit by three major storms in just over 14 months in 2011 and 2012, with all three causing extensive property damage and electric outages. Hurricane Irene struck Connecticut August 28, and damage totaled $235 million. Two months later, the "Halloween nor'easter" dropped extensive snow onto trees, resulting in snapped branches and trunks that damaged power lines; some areas were without electricity for 11 days. Hurricane Sandy had tropical storm-force winds when it reached Connecticut October 29, 2012. Sandy's winds drove storm surges into streets and cut power to 98% of homes and businesses, with more than $360 million in damage.

On December 14, 2012, Adam Lanza shot and killed 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, and then killed himself. The massacre spurred renewed efforts by activists for tighter laws on gun ownership nationally.

In the summer and fall of 2016, Connecticut experienced a drought in many parts of the state, causing some water-use bans. As of , 45% of the state was listed at Severe Drought by the US Drought Monitor, including almost all of Hartford and Litchfield counties. All the rest of the state was in Moderate Drought or Severe Drought, including Middlesex, Fairfield, New London, New Haven, Windham, and Tolland counties. This affected the agricultural economy in the state.

Timeline

YearEventSource
1775Connecticut involved in American RevolutionSource:Wikipedia
1789Connecticut adopts US ConstitutionSource:Wikipedia
1790Connecticut first censusPopulation of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990
1825Eli Whitney diesSource:Wikipedia
1828Noah Webster compiles dictionarySource:Wikipedia

Population History

source: Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990
Census Year Population
1790 237,946
1800 251,002
1810 261,942
1820 275,248
1830 297,675
1840 309,978
1850 370,792
1860 460,147
1870 537,454
1880 622,700
1890 746,258
1900 908,420
1910 1,114,756
1920 1,380,631
1930 1,606,903
1940 1,709,242
1950 2,007,280
1960 2,535,234
1970 3,031,709
1980 3,107,576
1990 3,287,116

Note: Connecticut was one of the 13 original States. Apart from claims to territory in the West, relinquished by 1800, its boundaries have remained substantially unchanged; small cessions to Massachusetts were made shortly after 1800. Census coverage included all of Connecticut from 1790 on.

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