Stonington, Connecticut

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about the town. For the borough, see Stonington (borough), Connecticut.
Stonington, Connecticut
Town
Stonington Homes.jpg
Official seal of Stonington, Connecticut
Seal
Location in New London County, Connecticut
Location in New London County, Connecticut
Coordinates: 41°21′54″N 71°54′24″W / 41.36500°N 71.90667°W / 41.36500; -71.90667Coordinates: 41°21′54″N 71°54′24″W / 41.36500°N 71.90667°W / 41.36500; -71.90667
Country United States
State Connecticut
NECTA Norwich-New London
Region Southeastern Connecticut
Settled 1649
Established 1662
Government
 • Type Selectman-town meeting
 • First selectman Edward Haberek Jr.
Area
 • Total 50.0 sq mi (129.5 km2)
 • Land 38.7 sq mi (100.2 km2)
 • Water 11.3 sq mi (29.4 km2)
Elevation 75 ft (23 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 18,545
 • Density 370/sq mi (140/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4)
ZIP code 06355, 06378, 06379
Area code(s) 860
FIPS code 09-73770
GNIS feature ID 0213513
Website www.stonington-ct.gov

The town of Stonington is located in New London County, Connecticut, United States, in the state's southeastern corner. It includes the borough of Stonington, the villages of Pawcatuck, Lords Point, and Wequetequock, and the eastern halves of the villages of Mystic and Old Mystic (the other halves being in the town of Groton). The population of the town was 18,545 at the 2010 census.[1]

History[edit]

The first European colonists established a trading house in the Pawcatuck section of town in 1649. The present territory of Stonington was part of lands that had belonged to the Pequot people, who referred to the areas making up Stonington as Pawcatuck (Stony Brook to the Pawcatuck River) and Mistack (Mystic River to Stony Brook). It was named "Souther Towne" or Southerton by Massachusetts in 1658, and officially became part of Connecticut in 1662 when Connecticut received its royal charter. Southerton was renamed "Mistick" in 1665[2]:26 and again renamed Stonington in 1666.[2]:36 Thomas Miner, Walter Palmer, William Chesebrough and Thomas Stanton were the founders. The town of North Stonington was set off as a parish from Stonington in 1724 and incorporated as a town in 1807.

Stonington first gained wealth in the 1790s when its harbor was home to a fleet engaged in the profitable sealing trade in which the skins of seals clubbed on islands off the Chilean and Patagonian coasts were sold as fur in China.[3]

Stonington repulsed two British naval bombardments. One, during the American Revolution, was a desultory bombardment by Sir James Wallace in the frigate HMS Rose on August 30, 1775. The other was a more damaging three-day affair between August 9 and 12, 1814. During the War of 1812, four British vessels, HMS Ramillies, HMS Pactolus, HMS Dispatch, and HMS Terror, under the command of Sir Thomas Hardy, appeared offshore on August 9, 1814. The British demanded immediate surrender, but Stonington's citizens replied with a note that stated, "We shall defend the place to the last extremity; should it be destroyed, we shall perish in its ruins."[4] For three days the Royal Navy pounded the town, but the only fatality was that of an elderly woman who was mortally ill. The British, after suffering many dead and wounded, sailed off on 12 August. The American poet Philip Freneau wrote (in part):

"The bombardiers with bomb and ball
Soon made a farmer's barrack fall,
And did a cow-house badly maul
That stood a mile from Stonington.
They kill'd a goose, they kill'd a hen
Three hogs they wounded in a pen—
They dashed away and pray what then?
This was not taking Stonington.
But some assert, on certain grounds,
(Beside the damage and the wounds),
It cost the king ten thousand pounds
To have a dash at Stonington.

The Stonington Harbor Light, a low stone building, was the first lighthouse established by the U.S. federal government, in 1823. In the 19th century Stonington supported a small fishing, whaling and sealing fleet, with some direct trade with the West Indies, enough in volume for it to be made a port of entry in 1842; the small granite Customs House faces Main Street just north of Cannon Square.

The New London and Stonington Railroad Company was incorporated on July 29, 1852.

The Groton and Stonington Street Railway was a trolley line that was created in 1904 to serve the Stonington area. The trolley was dismantled and replaced by buses in 1928.[5]

In recent decades, Stonington has experienced a large influx of new home owners using historic borough houses as second homes. The town has undergone a widespread reconditioning of these homes since the mid-1990s, when an altercation over redevelopment rights attracted substantial news coverage about Stonington's revitalization.[6]

Geography[edit]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 50.0 sq mi (129.6 km2), of which 38.7 sq mi (100.2 km2) is land and 11.4 sq mi (29.4 km2) (or 22.68%), is water.

In the waters off Stonington, the states of New York, Connecticut and Rhode Island come together at a single point.

Principal communities[edit]

  • Lords Point (06378)
  • Mystic (06355) (partly in the town of Groton)
  • Old Mystic (06372) (mostly in the town of Groton)
    • Quaketaug Hill, Wolf Neck
  • Pawcatuck (06379)
    • Anguilla, Anguilla Acres, Blueberry Hill, Brookside, Castle Hill, Clarksville, Downerville, Hinckley Hill, Lower Pawcatuck, Oak Hill Gardens, Solomonville, Stillmanville, The Highlands, Berry Hill, Wequetequock Hill
  • Stonington Borough (06378)
  • Wequetequock (06379)

Other minor communities are Deans Mill, Grand View Park, Greenhaven, Ledward Island, Ram Island, Road Church District, and Wamphassuc Point.

Climate[edit]

Climate data for Stonington, Connecticut
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 38
(3)
39
(4)
47
(8)
56
(13)
66
(19)
75
(24)
81
(27)
80
(27)
73
(23)
62
(17)
53
(12)
43
(6)
59.4
(15.3)
Average low °F (°C) 20
(−7)
22
(−6)
29
(−2)
38
(3)
48
(9)
57
(14)
63
(17)
62
(17)
55
(13)
43
(6)
35
(2)
26
(−3)
41.5
(5.3)
Precipitation inches (mm) 4.39
(111.5)
3.54
(89.9)
4.46
(113.3)
4.23
(107.4)
3.79
(96.3)
3.67
(93.2)
3.31
(84.1)
4.46
(113.3)
4.06
(103.1)
3.98
(101.1)
4.51
(114.6)
4.32
(109.7)
48.72
(1,237.5)
Source: The Weather Channel[7]

Demographics[edit]

Stonington lighthouse
Historical population
Census Pop.
1990 16,919
2000 17,906 5.8%
2010 18,545 3.6%

As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 17,906 people, 7,665 households, and 4,897 families residing in the town. The population density was 462.8 people per square mile (178.7/km²). There were 8,591 housing units at an average density of 222.1 per square mile (85.7/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 95.81% White, 0.63% Black or African American, 0.37% Native American, 1.26% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.46% from other races, and 1.42% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.30% of the population.

There were 7,665 households out of which 26.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.9% were married couples living together, 8.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.1% were non-families. 30.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.88.

In the town the population was spread out with 21.7% under the age of 18, 5.4% from 18 to 24, 28.5% from 25 to 44, 27.0% from 45 to 64, and 17.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 94.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.1 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $52,437, and the median income for a family was $63,431. Males had a median income of $45,596 versus $32,069 for females. The per capita income for the town was $29,653. About 2.9% of families and 5.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.4% of those under age 18 and 5.7% of those age 65 or over.

Buildings on the National Register of Historic Places[edit]

  • Capt. Nathaniel B. Palmer House — 40 Palmer Street (added July 19, 1996)
  • Mechanic Street Historic District — roughly bounded by West Broad Street (Route 1), Pawcatuck River, Cedar Street, and Courtland Street in the Pawcatuck section (added July 7, 1988). The district covers 1,470 acres (5.9 km2), and contains 413 buildings and one other structure.
  • Pequotsepos Manor — 120 Pequotsepos Road in the Mystic section (added June 15, 1979).
  • Rossie Velvet Mill Historic District — Roughly bounded by Bruggerman Court, Bruggerman Place, Greenmanville Avenue (Route 27), Hinckley Street, Pleasant Street, Rossie Street, and Velvet Street in the Mystic section (added March 9, 2007).
  • Stanton-Davis Homestead Museum also known as the Robert Stanton House — 576 Greenhaven Road in the Pawcatuck section (added July 4, 1979)
  • Stonington Harbor Light — 7 Water Street (added February 1, 1976)
  • Stonington High School — 25 Orchard Street (added September 17, 1978)
  • Whitehall Mansion — 42 Whitehall Avenue (Route 27) in the Mystic section (added May 12, 1979)
  • William Clark Company Thread Mill — 21 Pawcatuck Avenue, 12 and 22 River Road in the Pawcatuck section (added December 16, 2008)
  • Mystic Bridge Historic District — Stonington portion of downtown Mystic, roughly bounded by the Mystic River on the west, Mystic Seaport on the north, Route 27 on the east and AMTRAK on the south (added August 31, 1979}

Notable people, past and present[edit]

Residents[edit]


Other[edit]

Stonington has also been a destination and/or work place for many notable persons.

Stonington has been the home to several on-location movie shoots, including Steven Spielberg's Amistad and the Julia Roberts breakthrough movie, Mystic Pizza. Most recently it was used extensively for the movie Hope Springs with Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones both filming scenes in the borough of Stonington.

Media[edit]

One radio station is licensed to Stonington: WMOS FM 102.3 (rock)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Stonington town, New London County, Connecticut". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved October 29, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Connecticut (1852). The public records of the colony of Connecticut [1636-1776] ...: transcribed and published, (in accordance with a resolution of the general assembly) .... Brown & Parsons. Retrieved 26 September 2010. 
  3. ^ Diana Muir, Reflections in Bullough's Pond: Economy and Ecosystem in New England, 2000:80.
  4. ^ "Stonington: A Connecticut seafaring town has held off all challenges to its essential character for three centuries". Retrieved 4 July 2014. 
  5. ^ Kimball, Carol W. Historic Glimpses: Recollections of Days Past in the Mystic River Valley. Mystic, Connecticut: Flat Hammock Press, 2005.
  6. ^ Wojtas, Joe (December 3, 2000). "DEVELOPMENT; There Goes The Neighborhood" (hmtl). The New York Times. Retrieved May 24, 2010. 
  7. ^ "Monthly Averages for Stonington, CT". Weather.com. 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-20. 
  8. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  9. ^ "Meet Rob Simmons". Retrieved 2009-09-06. 
  • Palmer, Henry Robinson (1957). Stonington by the Sea (2nd ed.). Stonington, Conn.: Palmer Press. OCLC 3248688. 

External links[edit]