The house at 1 Elizabeth Street in Hartford’s West End was built in 1928 for Curtis H. Veeder and his family. Born in Alleghany, Pennsylvania, in 1862, Veeder was an engineer who got his first patent at age eighteen. He founded the Veeder Manufacturing Company in Hartford in 1895. The company’s first product was one of Veeder’s inventions, a bicycle cyclometer. Promoted with the slogan “It’s Nice to Know How Far You Go,” the devices measured the distance a bike has traveled by counting the number of rotations made by the wheels. The company later merged with the Root Company of Bristol, Connecticut, to form Veeder-Root, which continues to produce counting and computing devices today. Veeder died in 1943 and in 1950 his widow, Louise Stutz Veeder, sold the house to the Connecticut Historical Society. Founded in 1825, the society had been based for almost a century in the Wadsworth Atheneum. CHS constructed two large additions to the Veeder House, originally designed by William F. Brooks, to house its collections and museum exhibition space.
The original Warburton Chapel once stood at 61 Temple Street in Hartford, between Market and Front Streets. The Chapel began as the Union Sabbath School, started in 1851 as a mission of Hartford’s Center Church to residents of the city’s East Side. It occupied various quarters until Mary A. Warburton endowed a permanent home for the school and mission chapel on Temple Street in memory of her husband, John Warburton. The Warburton Chapel was dedicated on June 28, 1866 and rapid growth led to the construction of an addition in 1873. By 1916, the neighborhood around the Warburton Chapel was primarily Italian, and the building also served as the home of the First Italian Congregational Church. In 1948, Center Church decided to sell the Chapel and relocate its programs to the Center Church House on Gold Street. The Warburton Chapel was acquired by St. Anthony’s Catholic Parish, which converted it to serve as its new social center, named the Casa Andrea in memory of Rev. Andrew J. Kelly, who served as pastor of St. Anthony’s Church for 29 years. The chapel was demolished in 1960 to clear space for the building of Constitution Plaza.
The Charter Oak Community Church, an interracial interdenominational church, was established in 1942 and held its services in the community building of the Charter Oak Terrace public housing project. In 1954, the Hartford Housing Authority agreed to the sale of land at the corner of Brookfield Street and Charter Oak Avenue to the Trustees of Warburton Chapel for the construction of a building for the Charter Oak Church. Funds from the sale of the old Warburton Chapel were used to erect the new building, known as the Warburton Community Church. Designed by E.T Glasse, Jr., of Farmington, the new church at 420 Brookfield Street was dedicated on May 6, 1956. Read the rest of this entry »
The apartment building at 270 Sigourney Street in Hartford was built in 1916. It is a four-story structure. On two sides it has four tiers of wooden porches featuring “Chinese Chippendale” balustrades.
The house at 136-138 Collins Street in Hartford was built in 1870. An impressive mansard-roofed Second Empire-style house, it was once owned by Isaac Frisbie. He was superintendent of the Hartford Alms House, which once stood on a property to the rear of his house. The Alms House and adjacent Town Farm were abolished in the 1890s when Hartford’s town government was consolidated with its city government. Today the house on Collins Street is used as a halfway house for federal and state inmates who are transitioning back to freedom. The house once had a one-story veranda–traces of its roofline can be seen along the facade of the western half of the house.
The church at 19 May Street in Hartford was built in 1929 as the Adventist Church of Hartford. Today the building is used as the food pantry run by Glory Chapel International Cathedral. Read the rest of this entry »
One of Hartford’s movie palaces was the Colonial Theater at 488 Farmington Avenue. Built in 1926, the former theater has an elaborate Federal-style facade designed by architect James A. Tuck. Like other theaters of the period, the Colonial began as a venue for vaudeville before making the transition to motion pictures. In 1961 the theater was updated for Cinerama. After the theater finally closed in 1979, the building was used for retail shops until 2000, when the building was demolished except for the facade. It then took several years before a new building, housing the Churrascaria Braza restaurant, was built on the site utilizing the old facade. Intended to spark additional neighborhood development, the restaurant eventually closed in 2012.
This post marks the Seventh Anniversary of Historic Buildings of Connecticut! That means that there has been one post a day here for seven years! Thanks to all those who follow this site and enjoy Connecticut’s great historical and architectural landmarks!
Pictured above are the bow-fronted brownstone rowhouses located at 11-17 Capitol Avenue in Hartford. Built in 1879, their construction is attributed to the Hartford builder John W. Gilbert, who also built the neighboring rowhouses (19-25 Capitol Avenue) in 1871 and the nearby Hotel Capitol (corner of Main Street and Capitol Avenue) in 1875. Gilbert, himself a chess enthusiast, was married to a legendary chess player, Ellen E. Gilbert, who was the nineteenth century’s queen of correspondence chess. The couple lived at 21 Capitol Avenue.