Collis P. Huntington State Park
|Collis P. Huntington State Park|
|Connecticut State Park|
|Towns||Bethel, Newtown, Redding|
|Elevation||791 ft (241 m) |
|Area||883 acres (357 ha) |
|Management||Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection|
|Website: Huntington State Park|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Collis P. Huntington State Park.|
Collis P. Huntington State Park is a state-owned, public recreation area in the towns of Redding, Newtown, and Bethel in Fairfield County, Connecticut. The state park is noted for its sculptures of bears and wolves by Anna Hyatt Huntington. The park bears the name of railroad magnate Collis Potter Huntington, whose heirs donated the lands to the state, and was opened to the public following Mrs. Huntington death in 1973.
Under the late 19th-century ownership of Commodore Walther Luttgen, a New York banker, industrialist and yachtsman, park-like features were added to the landscape including service roads, trails, and artificial ponds. One of Luttgen's improvements, a miniature stone lighthouse, may still be seen. The remains of a small steam paddlewheeler that once plied the ponds have not been found.
Following Luttgen's death in 1922, Joseph E. Sterrett, a principal with the accounting firm of Price, Waterhouse, acquired the estate, including its mansion, Villa Linta. After the villa burned down, the land was purchased by Archer M. Huntington, the philanthropist stepson of industrialist Collis Potter Huntington.
Archer Huntington and his wife Anna Hyatt Huntington moved to the estate, changing its name to Stanerigg, in 1939. Here Mrs. Huntington worked creating works of realistic sculpture while Mr. Huntington pursued his interests as a poet, Spanish scholar, and patron of the arts. In addition to the bears and wolves that welcome visitors at the entrance of the park, Anna Hyatt Huntington's heroic sculpture of General Israel Putnam can be found at Putnam Memorial State Park in Redding. Her work can also be found at Atalaya Castle—the couple's winter quarters—and Brookgreen Gardens, which are both part of the Atalaya and Brookgreen Gardens national historic landmark in South Carolina.
Activities and amenities
The park has trails for hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing. Trails include the northern section of the Aspetuck Valley Trail, which connects with the adjacent Centennial Watershed State Forest. Park ponds are available for canoeing and fishing. Archery-only deer hunting is offered from mid-September through December.
- "Huntington State Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
- Legislative Program Review and Investigations Committee (January 23, 2014). "State Parks and Forests: Funding" (PDF). Staff Findings and Recommendations. Connecticut General Assembly. p. A-2. Retrieved March 20, 2014.
- "Collis P. Huntington State Park". Connecticut DEEP. Retrieved February 12, 2012.
- "About Walther Luttgen". History of Redding. Retrieved February 12, 2012.
- "The History of Huntington State Park in Redding, Connecticut". History of Redding. Retrieved February 12, 2012.
- Jules Heller; Nancy G. Heller, eds. (2013). North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Century: A Biographical Dictionary. Routledge. p. 268. ISBN 0815325843.