Civil War and Reconstruction (1850–1877)
The mid-nineteenth century was a period of massive upheaval in America. The country’s battles over race, slavery, and state’s rights ultimately degenerated into Civil War. Among those making significant contributions to the Union victory in the war were General (and 42nd governor of Connecticut) Joseph Hawley, General J. K. F. Mansfield of Middletown, and Connecticut’s 29th (Colored) Volunteer Infantry (CVI). The years that followed witnessed the rapid expansion of railroads and other means of transportation in Connecticut, helping foster in a period of mass industrialization that drew residents off of their farms and into the cities, while also attracting diverse foreign populations to Connecticut in record numbers.
In 1796, Amelia Simmons authored American Cookery—believed to be the first cookbook authored by an American published in the United States. …[more]
Beatrice Fox Auerbach was pioneering retail executive who ran the G. Fox & Co. department store and numerous philanthropic benefiting people in Hartford and around the world. …[more]
Mean-spirited, repressed souls or persecuted refugees and rugged egalitarians? Connecticut's state historian sets the record straight. …[more]
On November 21, 1785, physician and physiologist William Beaumont, who... …[more]
On November 20, 1866, mechanic Pierre Lallement, a temporary resident of New Haven, Connecticut, received a patent for an improvement in velocipedes. …[more]
Hiram Bingham III was a distinguished scholar and public servant... …[more]
On November 18, 1820, Nathaniel Brown Palmer of Stonington, Connecticut,... …[more]
On November 17, 1917, the J.B. Williams Company of Glastonbury... …[more]
Charles Kaman, an inventor and aviation pioneer, managed to combine... …[more]
Lack of refrigeration and higher bacteria counts in tidal waters once made summer months a dangerous time to eat oysters. …[more]
His mobiles, stabiles, and constellations are featured in museum collections around the world. …[more]
The story of the Foreign Mission School connects the town... …[more]
In the immediate aftermath of World War II, Thomas Joseph... …[more]
On November 8, 1904, Harvey Hubbell II patented the first... …[more]
On November 6, 1960, forty-eight hours before the Presidential election, Senator John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts addressed a street rally in New Haven. …[more]
Based in Orange, the 103rd Air Control Squadron of the... …[more]
Benjamin Hutchins Coe, born in Hartford, helped teach Americans how to draw through the publication of numerous art manuals, many of which focused on Connecticut-inspired landscapes. …[more]
Jack o’ lanterns, cider, masquerades, witches, and ghosts—many of the... …[more]
Overshadowed by the famed oak, Joseph Wadsworth, “the hero of the Charter,” has become the Rodney Dangerfield of Connecticut history—he doesn’t get any respect—or much recognition. …[more]
Tuberculosis was a leading cause of death in the early 20th century. Treatments for included everything from exposure to extremes in temperature to regimens involving access to the outdoors. …[more]
Wo to Drunkards – Increase Mather On October 27, 1841,... …[more]
Hartford-born William Gillette, known best for his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes in film and theater, was also a successful playwright. His 1886 Civil War drama, Held by the Enemy, earned accolades from British critics and audiences and helped change perceptions of American art forms overseas. …[more]
Roger Griswold was a lawyer, judge, and politician who spent... …[more]
On October 24, 1877, the Goodspeed Opera House on the... …[more]
A figurehead from the USS Hartford currently resides at the Connecticut State Capitol and serves as a reminder of the state's rich maritime heritage. …[more]
Benjamin Wright helped build transportation and canal systems in the... …[more]
From winged death's heads to weeping willows, gravestone carvings in Connecticut's historic cemeteries reflect changing attitudes toward mourning and memorialization. …[more]
Questions? We get a lot of them and some of... …[more]
Father and son George and Tracy Lewis not only founded... …[more]
Central Connecticut State University. “150th Anniversary of the Civil War: Connecticut Town Regimental Histories,” 2017. Link.
National Park Service - Richmond National Battlefield Park. “29th Regiment Connecticut Infantry (Colored),” 2017. Link.
Connecticut. “Connecticut Men in the Civil War.” Connecticut Military Department, 2017. Link.
“The Connecticut 29th Colored Regiment CV Infantry, Inc.,” 2017. Link.
New Britain Industrial Museum. “The Stanley Works,” 2017. Link.
Connecticut Freedom Trail. “29th Colored Regiment Monument,” 2017. Link.
Connecticut Freedom Trail. “Charles Ethan Porter House,” 2017. Link.
“Connecticut Historical Society,” 2017. Link.
“Middlesex County Historical Society,” 2017. Link.
“New Britain Industrial Museum,” 2017. Link.
Connecticut State Library. “The Museum of Connecticut History,” 2017. Link.
“Waterbury Button Museum.” Mattatuck Museum, 2017. Link.
“Broadside: Company A 1st Regiment, Conn. Vol. Artillery: Soldiers’ Memorial,” 1863. Connecticut Historical Society. Link.
“Connecticut African American Soldiers in the Civil War, 1861-1865.” State of Connecticut - Historical Commission, 2000. Link.
Connecticut State Library Digital Collections. “Digitized Historic Newspapers - Connecticut Newspapers During the Civil War and Reconstruction (1850–1877),” 2017. Link.
“Document: Emancipation Proclamation,” 1863. National Archives - Our Documents. Link.
Connecticut Historical Society. “Kellogg Brothers Lithographs - Digital Collections,” 2017. Link.
Warner, Ezra J. Patent Number 19,063 - Can Opener. 19,063. Waterbury, CT, issued January 5, 1858. Link.
Lallement, Pierre. Patent Number 59,915 - Improvement in Velocipedes. US59915 A. New Haven, CT, issued November 20, 1866. Link.
Connecticut State Library. “Research Guide to Civil War Materials,” 2017. Link.
Spencer, J. Ronald, ed. A Connecticut Yankee in Lincoln’s Cabinet: Navy Secretary Gideon Welles Chronicles the Civil War. Hartford, CT: The Acorn Club, 2014.
Hill, Isaac. A Sketch of the 29th Regiment of Connecticut Colored Troops Giving a Full Account of Its Formation, of All the Battles Through Which It Passed, and Its Final Disbandment. New York, NY: Baker & Godwin Printers, 1881. Link.
Smith, Julia Evelina. Abby Smith and Her Cows: With a Report of the Law Case Decided Contrary to Law. Hartford, CT, 1877. Link.
Niven, John. Connecticut for the Union the Role of the State in the Civil War. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1965.
Warshauer, Matthew. Connecticut in the American Civil War: Slavery, Sacrifice, and Survival. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 2011.
Mycek, Mary J., Marian K. O’Keefe, and Carolyn B. Ivanoff. Ebenezer D. Bassett (1833-1908). Derby, CT: Valley Historical Research Committee, 2008.
History of Battle-Flag Day, September 17, 1879. Hartford, CT: Lockwood & Merritt, 1880. Link.
Warshauer, Matthew. Inside Connecticut and the Civil War: Essays on One State’s Struggles. Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 2014.
Grant, Ellsworth S. “Joseph Hawley.” In The Miracle of Connecticut, edited by Oliver Ormerod Jensen. Hartford, CT: Connecticut Historical Society and Fenwick Productions, 1995.
Fiske, Samuel. Mr. Dunn Browne’s Experiences in the Army. Boston; New York: Nichols and Noyes, 1866. Link.
Newton, A. H. Out of the Briars: An Autobiography and Sketch of the Twenty-Ninth Regiment Connecticut Volunteers. Philadelphia, PA: A.M.E. Book Concern, 1910. Link.
Connecticut. Record of Service of Connecticut Men in the Army and Navy of the United States During the War of the Rebellion. Hartford, CT: Case, Lockwood & Brainard Company, 1889.
Soldiers’ Hospital. Rules and Regulations of the Soldiers’ Hospital at Fitch’s Soldiers’ Home, Noroton Heights, Connecticut. Hartford, CT: Case, Lockwood & Brainard Company, 1890.
Grant, Ellsworth S. The Colt Legacy: The Colt Armory in Hartford, 1855-1980. Providence, RI: Mowbray Company, 1982.
Eaton, William W., and Connecticut Democratic Party . State Central Committee. The Union, Past, Present, and Future a Speech Delivered at City Hall, Hartford, on Saturday Evening, March 3d, 1860. Hartford, CT: Connecticut Democratic Party, 1860. Link.
“Abraham Lincoln’s 1860 Visit To Hartford.” Hartford Courant. January 24, 2014, sec. Hartford Courant 250th Anniversary. Link.