Hartford Public Library stacks in the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford

Hartford Public Library stacks in the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford – Connecticut Historical Society and Connecticut History Illustrated

From poetry and prose to orature, a term for the rich traditions of oral expression in Native American and other cultures, Connecticut boasts numerous literary talents. The works of some, such as Mark Twain, Harriett Beecher Stowe, and Wallace Stevens, are well-known the world over. Even those who are not household names continue to inspire study and reflection. Among them are the Hartford Wits, poets active in the late 1700s, and Samson Occom, a Mohegan and Presbyterian minister whose 1768 autobiography did not become widely available until 1982. Publishers and printers have also called Connecticut home; in fact, Hartford was a major publishing center in the 19th century.

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Connecticut College - Linda Lear Center for Special Collections & Archives. “Finding Aid to the Prudence Crandall Collection,” 2017. Link.
“Friends & Enemies of Wallace Stevens,” 2012. Link.
Yale University Library. “Guide to the John Trumbull Papers from 1750-1843,” 2012. Link.
Yale University. “Guide to the Samuel Clemens Collection,” 2016. Link.
Yale University. “Guide to the Wallace Stevens Collection,” 2012. Link.
Connecticut Historical Society. “Lydia Huntley Sigourney Papers,” 2012. Link.


“Harriet Beecher Stowe Center,” 2017. Link.
“James Merrill House,” 2012. Link.
“Mark Twain House & Museum,” 2017. Link.
O’ Neill Center. “Monte Cristo Cottage,” 2016. Link.


Grasso, Christopher, and Omohundro Institute of Early American History & Culture. A Speaking Aristocracy: Transforming Public Discourse in Eighteenth-Century Connecticut. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1999.
Twitchell, Willis, ed. Hartford in History. A Series of Papers by Resident Authors. Hartford, CT: The Plimpton Manufacturing Company, 1907. Link.
Andrews, Kenneth R, and Roy J. Friedman Mark Twain Collection (Library of Congress). Nook Farm: Mark Twain’s Hartford Circle. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1950.
Howard, Leon. The Connecticut Wits. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1943.
Beers, Henry A. The Connecticut Wits, and Other Essays. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1920. Link.
Williams, Stanley Thomas, and Connecticut Tercentenary Commission. The Literature of Connecticut. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1936.
Everest, Charles W. The Poets of Connecticut with Biographical Sketches. Hartford,  CT: Tiffany and Burnham, 1843. Link.