Dam at Cargill Falls on the Quinebaug River in downtown Putnam – Photograph by User:Pi.1415926535 on Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-SA 3.0)

The Windham County town of Putnam is located in the northeast corner of the state and borders on Rhode Island. Its name honors one of Connecticut’s revolutionary war heroes, General Israel Putnum. As with many New England towns, Putnam’s growth came from its river, the Quinebaug. In the mid-1700s, grist and saw mills supported the local farming economy. By 1855, when Putnam incorporated from portions of Pomfret, Thompson, and Killingly, the industrial age had already brought several large cotton mills to the area along with a railway line. Today, Putnam’s historic attractions include its River Mills Heritage Trail, which includes six factory sites and the mansion of textile executive George Morse.

Learn More

Websites

“The Last Green Valley,” 2017. Link.

Places

“Aspinock Historical Society Of Putnam,” 2017. Link.
Connecticut Freedom Trail. “Thomas Taylor Gravesite,” 2012. Link.

Documents

Woodford, E. M. “Map of Windham County, Connecticut.” Philadelphia, PA: E.M. Woodford, 1856. University of Connecticut Libraries, Map and Geographic Information Center - MAGIC, Yale University Library, Map Collection. Link.
Connecticut State Library Digital Collections. “Putnam - WPA Architectural Survey,” 2015. Link.
“Putnam Collection.” Connecticut Digital Archive, n.d. Link.
Vogt, C.H. “View of Putnam, Connecticut, 1877.” Bird’s-eye. Boston, MA: Bailey, 1877. University of Connecticut Libraries, Map and Geographic Information Center - MAGIC. Link.
Lee, Stephen. “Windham County, Conn., Business Directory Containing the Names, Business and Location of All the Business Men in the County, Agricultural, Manufacturing, and Other Statistics, with a History of Each Town.” Windham County Transcript Office, 1861. Link.

Books

Bayles, Richard, ed. History of Windham County, Connecticut. New York, NY: W. W. Preston & Company, 1889. Link.
Larned, Ellen. History of Windham County, Connecticut. 1760-1880. Vol. 2. Worcester,  MA: Ellen Larned, 1874. Link.
Weaver, Margaret. Perspectives of Putnam: A History of Putnam, Connecticut. Putnam,  CT: Aspinock Historical Society, 1980.