Connecticut’s natural environment—from its flora and fauna to its waterways, soil, and geological formations—has played a vital, if not always appreciated, role in state history. Shad migrations, for example, not only influenced indigenous and colonial cultures, they still inspire town celebrations and local foodways. Ore deposits determined where industries would rise, as was the case with the Salisbury Iron District, and abundant water power made the industrial heyday of the 1800s possible. Depletion, pollution, and other man-made tolls on the environment inspired conservation efforts, including the multi-state effort that led the Connecticut River to be designated an American Heritage River in 1997.
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Hard, Walter R., Douglas W. Gorsline, and Fitzgerald Rivers of America Collection (Library of Congress). The Connecticut. New York, NY: Rinehart & Company, 1947.
Delaney, Edmund T. The Connecticut River: New England’s Historic Waterway. Chester, CT: Globe Pequot Press, 1983.
Bell, Michael. The Face of Connecticut: People, Geology, and the Land. Hartford, CT: State Geological and Natural History Society of Connecticut, 1988.
Alexopoulos, John. The Nineteenth Century Parks of Hartford: A Legacy of the Nation. Hartford, CT: Hartford Architecture Conservancy, 1983.
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