Thames River (Connecticut)

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Not to be confused with River Thames.
The Thames River, seen from the waterfront in New London, Connecticut

The Thames River (usually /ˈθmz/) is a short river and tidal estuary in the U.S. state of Connecticut. It flows south for 15 miles (24 km)[1] through eastern Connecticut from the junction of the Yantic and Shetucket rivers at Norwich, to New London and Groton, which flank its mouth at Long Island Sound. The Thames River watershed includes a number of smaller basins and the 80-mile-long Quinebaug River, which rises in southern Massachusetts and joins the Shetucket River about 4 miles northeast of Norwich.[2]

The river has provided important harbors since the mid-17th century; it was then known as the Pequot River, after the Pequot Indians who dominated the area. Other early names for the river have included Frisius, Great, Great River of Pequot, Little Fresh, Mohegan, New London, and Pequod.[3]

The United States Coast Guard Academy, Connecticut College, a U.S. Navy submarine base, and the Electric Boat submarine shipyard are located on the river at New London. The USS Nautilus (SSN-571), the world's first nuclear-powered submarine, was launched into the river on January 21, 1954.[4]

Sleighing on the frozen river, winter of 1903-1904

Two historic forts, now Connecticut State Parks, overlook the mouth of the river at New London harbor; Fort Griswold on the eastern Groton Heights, and Fort Trumbull on the New London side.

Events[edit]

The Yale-Harvard Boat Race is held annually in New London.

New London's Sailfest is an annual event which includes OpSail, a gathering of large sailing vessels, including the U.S. Coast Guard training ship Eagle.

Places around Thames River[edit]

Crossings[edit]

The Thames is crossed by three bridges:

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map, accessed April 1, 2011
  2. ^ Eastern Connecticut Conservation District.[1] accessed June 24, 2112
  3. ^ "How New London, Connecticut, Got Its Name". The New London Gazette. The Oldham Publishing Service. Retrieved 2006-10-22. 
  4. ^ BBC News: "USS Nautilus: A record-breaking sub" Accessed 2014_01_21

See also[edit]

Coordinates: 41°18′08″N 72°04′46″W / 41.30222°N 72.07944°W / 41.30222; -72.07944