October 14: Hartford Shuts Down Over Influenza Fears

  Today in 1918, as a deadly and highly contagious strain of influenza spread throughout Connecticut, Hartford city leaders considered drastic action in order to minimize further public exposure. To many Americans, the global Spanish Influenza pandemic of 1918 – 1919 was arguably just as — if not more — terrifying than the First World…

October 5: A Revolt Against the State Income Tax

  One of the largest protests in Connecticut history took place on this day in 1991, as tens of thousands of Connecticans gathered on the lawn of the State Capitol in Hartford to call for the repeal of the brand-new state income tax. 1991 was a tumultuous year in state politics; during the summer, legislators…

July 31: All Aboard The Branford Trolley Line!

  Today in Connecticut history, one of the first electrically-powered trolley lines in the United States began service between Branford and East Haven, Connecticut. July 31, 1900 marked the inaugural run of the Branford Electric Railway, which was hailed as a more efficient and sanitary way to transport people along the Connecticut shoreline than the…

May 27: The Oldest Volunteer Fire Department in New England

  From the earliest days of Connecticut history, fire posed one of the greatest mortal dangers to Connecticut residents — especially to the English settlers whose homes, barns, fences, and other structures were made of timber and often clustered closely together.  In the 17th and early 18th centuries, before the advent of portable water pumps,…

April 22: Noah Webster Calls for Environmental Sustainability – in 1817!

  On this day in 1817, Noah Webster’s visionary essay on environmental sustainability, which he modestly titled “Domestic Consumption,” was published on the front page of the Connecticut Courant.  Born in what is now West Hartford, Connecticut and a graduate of Yale College, Webster is best known to history as the creator of the first American…

July 31: All Aboard The Branford Trolley Line!

  On this day in Connecticut history, one of the first electrically-powered trolley lines in the United States began service between Branford and East Haven, Connecticut.  July 31, 1900 marked the inaugural run of the Branford Electric Railway, which was hailed as a more efficient and sanitary way to transport people along the Connecticut shoreline…

June 20: End of the Line for the Naugatuck Valley Trolley

  The morning of June 20th, 1937 was the first of a new era of public transportation in Connecticut’s Naugatuck Valley.  After nearly 50 years of uninterrupted trolley service between Ansonia and Derby, the last electric trolley had finished its final run shortly after midnight, replaced by public bus transportation. The electrically-powered trolley line that…