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A worker cutting ivory

Ivory Cutting: The Rise and Decline of a Connecticut Industry

At one time, manufacturing facilities in the town of Deep River and village of Ivoryton in Essex processed up to 90 percent of the ivory imported into the US.


The Ivoryton Playhouse

Ivoryton Playhouse Opens – Today in History: June 17

June 17, 2021 • Arts, Essex

On June 17, 1930, the Ivoryton Playhouse opened with a production of the play Broken Dishes, which had just closed in New York.


New England burst its boilers off Essex, October 8, 1833

The Steamboat New England: “The shock was dreadful” – Today in History: October 8

October 8, 2020 • Disaster, Essex, Environment, Transportation

One of Connecticut’s worst steamboat disasters occurred on the dark and stormy night of October 8, 1833, on the Connecticut River.


Richard Brooks, Oliver Cromwell

Oliver Cromwell Launched – Today in History: June 13

On June 13, 1776, the ship Oliver Cromwell was launched in Essex, one of the largest full-rigged ships built after the establishment of Connecticut’s navy.


Ivoryton's Comstock, Cheney Co. produced a variety of ivory goods

Phineas Pratt’s Machine for Making Combs – Today in History: April 12

On April 12, 1799, Phineas Pratt of Ivoryton, Connecticut, a deacon, silversmith, and inventor, received a patent for a “machine for making combs.”


Detail from View of Essex, Centerbrook & Ivoryton, Conn. 1881

The British Raid on Essex

On a cold April night in 1814, a British raiding force rowed six miles up the Connecticut River to burn the privateers of Essex, then known as Pettipaug.


Chester Bowles

Governor Chester Bowles Dies – Today in History: May 25

May 25, 2018 • Essex, Politics and Government

On May 25, 1986, Chester Bowles, a Connecticut governor, Congressional representative, ambassador, and author, died in Essex, Connecticut.


An Orderly & Decent Government: Significant Events & Developments, 1776-1818

With its limited supply of fertile land either occupied or exhausted, one of Connecticut’s principal exports in the post-Revolutionary years was people.


Over Time: Essex’s Historical Population

April 6, 2014 • Hide Featured Image, Essex

Census data, from colonial times on up to the present, is a key resource for those who study the ways in which communities change with the passage of time.


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