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Other Hartford-related Sites

Sites change their addresses all the time, so if you come upon a dead link, kindly drop a line.

Links are grouped by category:
Libraries, Museums and Societies Civic and Tourism Groups
More Local History Corporate Histories
Cemeteries The Arts
Schools, Colleges and Universities Media
Government Sports

 

Libraries, Museums and Societies

Connecticut Historical Society - CHS is the state's foremost history museum and library, offering everything from exhibits to genealogical resources.

Hartford Public Library - Important services include the Hartford Collection, which is a home for documents and photos concerning city history, and a microfilm collection Hartford newspapers.

Connecticut State Library - The primary repository for all state documents and The History and Genealogy section is a must for genealogical searches. A page there called "Sources of Information on Connecticut's History" contains valuable links and bibliographies on state history, divided by period. The CSL is also the primary repository for state documents and newspapers from around Connecticut.

Connecticut History Online - The jackpot for those seeking historical photographs. Three institutions—the Connecticut Historical Society, the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center at the University of Connecticut, and the Mystic Seaport Museum—have collaborated to create an easy-to-search database of 14,000 images.

Hartford Preservation Alliance - The Alliance has become the leading voice for historic preservation in the city, providing information and resources to those who want to preserve the historical integrity of their properties and facilitating the city's adoption of a preservation ordinance.

Connecticut Landmarks - Founded in 1936 as the Antiquarian & Landmarks Society, this highly active group owns and maintains 12 historic properties that span four centuries of New England history. Its Hartford properties include the Butler-McCook Homestead on Main Street (Hartford's oldest house), the Isham-Terry House on High Street, and the Richard Upjohn House on Forest Street.

Mark Twain House - The one-of-a-kind, High Victorian mansion on Farmington Avenue where the author of "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" lived from 1874 to 1891. The Web site gives information on tours and events at the house, along with an excellent history. Click on the "Mark Twain's Hartford" icon for a look at the attractions that influenced his life and work in the city.

Hartford Studies Project - A Trinity College program that includes an archive documenting the city’s history since the 1880s and a course, “The History of Hartford,” offered twice a year to undergraduate and graduate students. Many primary-source documents can be accessed, as can many student papers and about 250 vintage photographs.

Connecticut’s Heritage Gateway - Operated by the Connecticut Humanities Council. This site serves as a starting point for learning about particular topics and events in Connecticut’s past. It also steers visitors to programs offered by the state’s many heritage organizations. Teachers can use it to locate curriculum materials and resources.

Harriet Beecher Stowe Center - Dedicated to the author of "Uncle Tom's Cabin," who lived on Farmington Avenue, in a house adjacent to Mark Twain's. The center is headquartered on the property and holds programs on social issues that interested Stowe, including race relations and women's roles.

Old State House - The city's most historic building. Constructed in the late 18th century, it served as the seat of state government until 1878 and as City Hall until 1915. Recently restored, it's a "must-see" for Hartford visitors. The Web site includes vintage Hartford photos, this-day-in-history factoids, and a calendar of events.

Governor's Residence - A 19-room mansion located on the western edge of the city, at the corner of Prospect and Asylum avenues. It's open for tours at certain times of the year.

Society of the Descendants of the Founders of Hartford - An organization for those with ancestors who settled in Hartford before February 1640. The society's purposes include deepening public understanding of the city's early settlers.

Noah Webster House and West Hartford Museum - Birthplace and childhood home of Noah Webster, author of the first American dictionary.

New England Air Museum - Located adjacent to Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, two towns north of Hartford.

Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation - An organization dedicated to protecting "the character and beauty of Connecticut's historic architecture, streetscapes, urban neighborhoods and country landscapes."

First Company Governor’s Foot Guard - Organized in Hartford in October 1771 and still a fixture of important ceremonies throughout Connecticut.

Jewish Historical Society of Greater Hartford - Established in 1971, the Society is dedicated to collecting and preserving historical documents, photographs, and memorabilia of the Jewish community of Greater Hartford.

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More Local History

Hartford, Connecticut: Landmarks, History, Neighborhoods - A photographic survey of some of the places, architecture, and people that make Hartford a special place. Built by Karen O'Maxfield, whose work also graces this site.

Hartford Black History Project - An information-packed site "that celebrates the contribution of the Black community to Hartford's history."

Friends and Enemies of Wallace Stevens - A site dedicated to the poet, who worked as a vice-president of the Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company. Offers samples of his poetry, a map for retracing his walks, event notices, an online discussion group, and artwork.

A Shoeleather History of Hartford - Articles on Hartford history written from the perspective of the political left. This is a section of Homefront, a site that "documents and explores the progressive organizing for social and economic justice by the people of Hartford, Connecticut."

Connecticut Women's Hall of Fame - Founded by the Connecticut Forum and the Hartford College for Women at the University of Hartford. The inductees include many women with Hartford connections, like department store owner Beatrice Fox Auerbach.

Connecticut History on the Web - A site devoted to providing history and social studies teachers and their students with materials and lessons on various topics regarding Connecticut history.

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Cemeteries

Ancient Burying Ground - The oldest historic site in Hartford and the only one surviving from the 1600s. Until the early 1800s, it was Hartford's only graveyard. Notables buried there include the Rev. Thomas Hooker, leader of the settlers who founded the city, and Jeremiah Wadsworth, a wealthy businessman who served as quartermaster of the Revolution and played host to George Washington.

Cedar Hill Cemetery - This elegant 19th-century cemetery is the final resting place for Samuel Colt, J.P. Morgan, Gideon Wells, Wallace Stevens, Jacob Weidenmann, Morgan Bulkeley, and many other figures in local and national history.

Find-a-Grave - Trying to dig someone up? Search this database for the graves of the famous and not so famous "around the world." For grave sites of the famous in Connecticut, click here.

The Political Graveyard - This link to the Hartford County page allows you to track down the graves of Hartford County political figures. Did you know, for instance, that former Republican National Chairman Marshall Jewell and former Democratic National Chairman John Bailey rest in the same Hartford cemetery?

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Schools, Colleges and Universities

University of Hartford - Created in 1957 through the merger of Hillyer College, the Hartford Art School, and the world-famous Hartt School of Music. The Web site includes a detailed history of the university, which among other things hosts the Maurice Greenberg Center for Judaic Studies and the Museum of American Political Life

Trinity College - Founded in 1823 as Connecticut's second college and now "one of the nation's leading independent liberal arts colleges." Read about Trinity's history and about the Hartford Studies Project, in which students try to illuminate the city's past and present. There's also the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative, a high-profile effort to revive the neighborhoods surrounding the Trinity campus, in the city's South End.

University of Connecticut - The main campus is in Storrs, but the UConn School of Law is located in Hartford's west end.

Hartford Seminary - Founded in 1834, the seminary provides nondenominational training. Its library contains special collections on New England history. Read a history of the institution.

Hartford Conservatory - Offering instruction in the performing arts since 1890.

Rensselaer at Hartford - Founded in 1955 as the Hartford Graduate Center, it became a branch of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., in 1997.

Capital Community College - Occupying the former G. Fox department store in downtown Hartford since 2002. The college is the result of the July 1992 merger of Greater Hartford Community College (founded in 1967) and the Hartford State Technical College (founded as the Connecticut Engineering Institute in 1946.) See the history page for more background.

Hartford Public High School - With origins dating to the founding of Hartford itself in the 1630s, HPHS claims the title of second-oldest secondary school in the United States. The recent renovation of the school's current home on Forest Street included the creation of a museum and archive area full of HPHS artifacts.

American School for the Deaf - Founded in Hartford in 1817, this is the country's oldest school serving the deaf community. It's now located in West Hartford. Site has an excellent history page.

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Government

City of Hartford - The city's official Web site.

Hartford Police Department - Features an exhaustive history page that details what happened under every chief.

Hartford Fire Department - The history page includes a brief narrative, along with lists of past chiefs, major fires, and firefighters who died in the line of duty or from service-related illness.

State of Connecticut - The gateway for pages maintained by the governor and other constitutional officers, state agencies, the legislature, and the judiciary. Among the pages that concern state and local history:

Capital City Economic Development Authority - The state-created agency spearheading several major redevelopment projects, including Adriaen’s Landing, a 30-acre convention, hotel, retail, and residential development on the Connecticut River. It's scheduled to open in 2005.

U.S. Rep. John B. Larson - Congressman for Connecticut's 1st District, which includes Hartford.

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Civic and Tourism Groups

Hartford Preservation Alliance - A highly active nonprofit organization that seeks to "revitalize Hartford and its neighborhoods through the preservation and rehabilitation of Hartford’s unique architectural heritage." Its newsletter is especially informative.

Hartford.com - Web site for the Hartford Image Group - the group responsible for the ad campaign built around the slogan, "Hartford: New England's rising star." The site gives potential visitors to the city information on various attractions awaiting them.

State Capitol tours - The state Capitol has been a defining landmark of Hartford since its construction in 1868. Tours of the building and grounds—which include a number of statues—are conducted by the League of Women Voters of Connecticut Education Fund.

Riverfront Recapture - A private, nonprofit organization leading the effort to restore public access to the Connecticut River.

Bushnell Park Foundation - This group celebrates "Hartford's parlor" with a Web site that features a virtual-reality tour of the downtown park in QuickTime, along with many photographs and lots of information, including a detailed history section.

Elizabeth Park - Home of the oldest municipally operated rose garden in the country. The 2 1/2-acre garden has about 800 varieties of roses, amounting to 15,000 plants. The Web site features a "rose of the month," along with a small history section and some great "images of the past."

Greater Hartford Convention & Visitors Bureau - A nonprofit group created to draw conventions and tourism to the Hartford area. Offers information on travel, accommodations and events.

MetroHartford Chamber of Commerce - The leading business group of the Hartford area. Formerly called the Greater Hartford Chamber of Commerce.

Heritage Trails Hartford Sightseeing Tours - A business that offers tours of historic landmarks. Its site contains some stunning photos.

Connecticut Tourism - A state-government resource on attractions, lodging, and events.

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Corporate Histories

Colt Firearms - Maker of the six-shooter and a host of other important firearms. The factory has been converted to living and office space, but its blue "onion dome" remains a striking landmark, greeting those who enter the city from the northbound lanes of Interstate 91.

Columbia Bicycles - Founded in 1877 by Col. Albert Pope. Mass production began at the Weed Sewing Machine Company factory on Capitol Avenue. The company is now headquartered in Westfield, Mass.

Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Co. - Founded in 1866 as “the first company in America devoted primarily to industrial safety.” Its specifications for boiler design, manufacture, and maintenance became widely accepted as the “Hartford Standards.”

Aetna - One of the best-known insurers in the country. It began in 1850, when Hartford's still-thriving riverfront trade encouraged the growth of insurance.

The Hartford - Founded in 1810 as the Hartford Fire Insurance Co. Poet Wallace Stevens worked in the company's Asylum Avenue headquarters as one of its vice presidents. He often composed during his walks to and from work.

The Phoenix Companies - Founded in 1851 as the American Temperance Life Insurance Company—a firm that insured only those who abstained from alcohol—the Phoenix has evolved into "wealth management" concern. Its headquarters in downtown Hartford, known as the "boat building" is the world's first two-sided building.

Travelers - Among its many other accomplishments, this insurer was the first to offer accident insurance, the first to offer aircraft insurance, and the first to carry accident insurance for space flights and lunar exploration. For many years, its downtown Hartford headquarters was the tallest building between New York and Boston.

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The Arts

The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts - The Bushnell has been one of Hartford's architectural as well as cultural landmarks since 1930. Broadway touring companies, symphony orchestras, famous speakers—they all come to The Bushnell. History page

Charter Oak Cultural Center - "A nonprofit arts resource for the exploration of the world's cultures, especially those strongly represented in the Hartford region." Housed in a beautiful former synagogue, built in 1876. (It was the first in Connecticut.)

Greater Hartford Arts Council - Plans, promotes, and raises money for an array of cultural programs, including Aetna First Thursdays, A Taste of Hartford, the Festival of Lights, and Hartford Proud & Beautiful.

Greater Hartford Festival of Jazz - The 2004 edition will be held July 16-18 in Bushnell Park.

Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art - This is the nation's oldest public art museum. Starting with a castle-like building bestowed by founder Daniel Wadsworth in 1844, the museum has expanded twice over the years, with the assistance of Elizabeth Colt (widow of gun maker Samuel Colt) and J. Pierpont Morgan, the financier and Hartford native. Its Web site offers a brief history.

Hartford Stage - A mainstay of downtown Hartford and "one of the leading resident theatres in the nation." Since 1964 it has staged more than 260 productions, including world or American premieres of works by the likes of Edward Albee, Horton Foote, Vladimir Nabakov, and Tennessee Williams.

Cinestudio at Trinity College - An ornate and immaculately maintained movie theater, recalling the movie palaces of the 1930s and 1940s.

Real Art Ways - One of the seminal "alternative spaces" for art in the U.S. since 1975. It occupies the former Underwood typewriter factory on Arbor Street, in the Parkville section. The Web site offers short and long versions of the organization's history.

Artists' Collective - Established in 1970 by world-renowned alto saxophonist and educator Jackie McLean, along with his wife, actress and dancer Dollie McLean. The Collective helps children in Hartford's poorest neighborhoods by giving them training in the performing arts.

Hartford Symphony - "Widely recognized as one of America’s leading regional orchestras." It began in 1934, as a federal program to employ musicians thrown out of work by the Great Depression. Today, it is supported by more than 8,000 subscribers and nearly 3,000 donors.

Webster Theatre - Built in 1934 as a movie theater, now one of the city's prime venues for live rock. The theater, sitting on the edge of Barry Square in the city's South End, is one of the best examples of art deco design in Hartford.

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Media

The Hartford Courant - The only statewide daily newspaper in Connecticut and the only daily serving Hartford. For city news, click here. For articles that appear in the Sunday "Place" section, click here.

Hartford Advocate - A weekly "alternative" newspaper. Like the Courant, it is owned by the Tribune Company of Chicago.

Connecticut Explored - When it was launched in 2002, this glossy magazine was called the Hog River Journal and focused on the history, arts, and culture of the Hartford region. That focus eventually widened to the whole state, as reflected in the name change in 2009. Many public and private institutions are partners in the endeavor.

Hartford Magazine - An "upscale" lifestyle magazine with the aim "showcasing all that Greater Hartford has to offer in a fresh, contemporary presentation."

Other Connecticut newspapers - This list, compiled by Newslink.org, includes dailies, weeklies, business journals, and campus papers.

Connecticut Broadcast History - A tremendous resource for anyone interested in the history of Connecticut's radio and television stations, especially Hartford-area radio stations. You'll find lots of photos and recollections from former station employees.

WTIC Alumni - Dedicated to those who worked at radio stations WTIC-AM and -FM and television station WTIC-Channel 3 before 1974, when The Travelers sold them. WTIC-AM went on the air in 1925.

Bob Steele's Century - The place to go for books and CDs about the late Bob Steele, morning host on WTIC for half a century and Connecticut's best-loved broadcaster.

WDRCOBG.com - WDRC-AM is Connecticut's first commercial station, launching in New Haven in 1922 but moving to Hartford in 1930. This tribute site is looaded with photos, articles, and sound files. There's also a section on longtime WDRC competitor WPOP.

Links to Connecticut radio and television stations - Provided by the Connecticut Broadcasters Association. Includes addresses, telephone numbers, and other contact information.

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Sports

Friends of Vintage Base Ball - One of the great ambassadors for Hartford, FOVB holds tournaments of 1860s- and 1880s-style baseball, complete with period uniforms and equipment. Most games are played at the Base Ball Grounds at Colt Meadow, a section of Colt Park very near to where baseball was played in the 1860s and '70s.

University of Hartford Alumni Athletics Hall of Fame - Inductees include major-league baseball star Jeff Bagwell and pro basketball star Vin Baker.

Return the Hartford Whalers Organization - Dedicated to the former National Hockey League team.

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