Along the town Green in Salem are a number of historic buildings, one of which was built in 1885 as the Central district schoolhouse. In 1938, there were discussions about whether to add to rooms to the existing school or to construct a new building. The latter course was decided on and the nearby three-room Salem School was built in 1940. That building has since been much expanded. The former Center School was later used as a Grange Hall. Read the rest of this entry »
An Episcopal Society in East Haddam was formed in 1791 by members of the First Congregational Church, who perhaps left that congregation because of plans to build a new meeting house too far from the Connecticut River landings. In 1795, the Society built the first St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church on a hill overlooking the East Haddam river landings. The current church building, at 31 Main Street, was consecrated in 1890. It was built on land offered to the church by Judge Julius Attwood. The church was constructed in an eclectic Victorian mode in which the Shingle style predominates. The church’s bell, acquired in 1834-1835, came from a Spanish monastery and bears an inscription with the date 815. After the congregation moved to the current church, the bell sat on a wall near the church until a bell tower was completed in 1904.
At 2221 North Avenue in Bridgeport is an attractive Queen Anne house built in 1903. It was the home of Herbert E. Wood, a charcoal dealer. A directory of 1922 lists it as the address of Rolland E. Hart, a piano dealer. Another listing of 1925 indicates it was the home of F.U. Conard, Works Manager of the Underwood Typewriter Co., Plant #2 in Bridgeport.
Pavilion Hall in New Preston (in the town of Washington) was built in 1897 (some sources claim 1929) as a community hall for concerts, plays and celebrations. At one time, the building contained a post office and a fire engine was kept inside behind the double doors in front. Today the building is home to the Boys and Girls Club of New Preston and is named for Harry O.Erickson, a beloved community volunteer.
At 2403 North Avenue in Bridgeport is a Queen Anne/Shingle style house built in 1892. It was the residence of George W. Jackman, General Manager of the Springfield Manufacturing Company. He was also a Bridgeport Alderman. According to Volume 1 of the History of Bridgeport and Vicinity (1917, edited by George C. Waldo, Jr.):
The Springfield Manufacturing Company, incorporated 1909, succeeded the Springfield Emery Wheel Manufacturing Company, which was established in 1880. Grinding machinery and abrasive wheels are made by this company[.]
Episcopal services began to be held in private homes in Southington in the 1780s. The first church building was begun in 1791, but was not finished for many years. Many early members of the church were not dedicated Anglicans, but were Universalists who joined because of doctrinal disputes with the town’s Congregational church. As described by Heman R. Timlow in Ecclesiastical and Other Sketches of Southington, Conn. (1875):
It was a difficult work to build the house of worship, but it was more difficult to sustain service after it was built. It was a very plain building, and had Gothic windows to distinguish it from the “meeting house.” It stood where David P. Woodruff’s market now is. The original “proprietors” held possession of it, and for many years there were legal questions as to its rightful ownership. It was finally sold and converted into a store. In 1860 it was burned. [...]
In 1828 the parish was united with that of St. Andrews, Meriden, then under the rectorship of Rev. James Keeler. Under the labors of this rector the parish gave signs of new life, it having thrown off entirely the Universalist element and established itself upon the doctrines of the Prayer Book. In 1829 the building was consecrated by Bishop Brownell. For a year or two there followed prosperity and harmony, but another secession took place in 1831 during the revivals that visited the town that year, and several of the leading members of the congregation became members of the Congregational and Baptist churches. Services were occasionally held by Rectors of adjacent parishes, and in this way a nominal existence was preserved. In 1840 the Unitarian movement absorbed most of the parish so that scarcely a remnant remained. [...]
In 1862 an attempt was made to reorganize the church under the name of The Church of the Redeemer. The Rev. B. F. Cooley officiated for a year, and he was followed by Charles Allen, of Trinity College, as Lay Reader, who labored zealously for a year. The enterprise however did not succeed, and it was abandoned in 1864. Occasional services have since been held in the town by the Rev. Dr. Horton of Cheshire, and others.
In later years, the Episcopal church was again revived in Southington and St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, at 145 Main Street, was built in 1892 in the Shingle style. A parish hall was added in 1899. It was considered a mission church, until becoming a “self-sustaining parish” by 1919. The church added a new parish house and classrooms in 1957.