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about Hartford

Hartford is the capital of the state of Connecticut, in Hartford County. It is located on the Connecticut River, near the center of the state. As of the 2000 census, the population of the city was 121,578. It is the second largest city in the state, after Bridgeport.

Its main newspapers are the daily Hartford Courant and the weekly Hartford Advocate.

It is the home of Trinity College, the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford Seminary, the University of Hartford (in the adjoining town of West Hartford), and the University of Connecticut Law School. The Institute of Living was one of the first psychiatric hospitals in the nation.

Hartford is also a center of the insurance industry, and home to Colt Firearms and large corporations like United Technologies (which owns Pratt & Whitney, Otis Elevator, and Sikorsky Aircraft).

Harriet Beecher Stowe was originally from the Litchfield, Connecticut area, but settled in Hartford during the 1870s. Her house on Forest Street is now open to the public, right next to her famous neighbor's old mansion, Mark Twain.

Mark Twain moved to Hartford in 1874 and lived in Hartford for many years. The Mark Twain House is a national historic site. Twain, whose real name was Samuel Langhorne Clemens, wrote many of his most famous works in Hartford, including The Gilded Age, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, Roughing It, and his most read and controversial work, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

Wallace Stevens, the poet, was an insurance executive here.

Katharine Hepburn and Stephen Cole Kleene were born here.

Hartford, Connecticut, is just south of Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut; the airport also serves the Springfield, Massachusetts area.

Hartford geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 46.5 km² (18.0 mi²). 44.8 km² (17.3 mi²) of it is land and 1.7 km² (0.7 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 3.67% water.

Hartford history

Dutch fur traders from New Netherland colony set up trade in the site as early as 1623, after Adriaen Block explored it in 1614. The Dutch named their post the 'Hope House' (Huys de Hoop). Prior to the Dutch arrival, the Indians who inhabited the area had called it Suckiaug.

By 1633 Jacob van Curler had added a block house and palisade to the post while New Amsterdam sent a small garrison and a pair of cannons. The fort was abandoned by 1654, but its neighborhood in Hartford is still known as Dutch Point.

The first English settlers arrived in 1636. Thomas Hooker led 100 settlers with 130 head of cattle in a trek from Newtown (now Cambridge) in the Massachusetts Bay Colony and started their settlement just north of the Dutch fort. The settlement was originally called Newtown, but was changed to Hartford in 1637 to honor the English city of Hertford.

During the early 1800s, the Hartford area was a center of abolitionist activity. The most famous abolitionist family was the Beechers. Rev. Lyman Beecher was an important Congregational minister known for his anti-slavery sermons. His daughter, Harriet Beecher Stowe, wrote the famous Uncle Tom's Cabin, while her brother, Henry Ward Beecher, was a noted clergymen who vehemently opposed slavery and supported the temperance movement and woman's suffrage. Beecher Stowe's sister, Isabella Beecher Hooker, was a leading member of the women's rights movement.

In 1860, Hartford was the site of the first "Wide Awakes," abolitionist supporters of Abraham Lincoln. These supporters organized torch-light parades that were both political and social events, often including fireworks and music, in celebration of Lincoln's visit to the city. This type of event caught on and eventually became a staple of mid to late-1800s campaigning.

In July 6, 1944, Hartford was the scene of one of the worst fire disasters in the history of the United States. The fire, which occurred at a performance of the Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey circus, became known as the Hartford Circus Fire.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Hartford, Connecticut".

This city is also known as: Hartford.

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