New Milford, Connecticut
New Milford, Connecticut
The town green, reputed to be the state's longest
"Gateway To Litchfield County"
Location in Litchfield County, Connecticut
|• Mayor||Pete Bass|
|• Town Council|
|• Total||63.7 sq mi (165.0 km2)|
|• Land||61.6 sq mi (159.5 km2)|
|• Water||2.1 sq mi (5.5 km2)|
|Elevation||236 ft (72 m)|
|• Density||465/sq mi (180/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-5 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-4 (Eastern)|
|GNIS feature ID||209242|
New Milford is a town in Litchfield County, Connecticut, United States, located in Western Connecticut. The town is located 14 miles (23 km) north of Danbury, on the banks of the Housatonic River. It is the largest town in the state in terms of land area at nearly 62 square miles (161 km2). The population was 28,671 according to the Census Bureau's 2006 estimates. Male residents are commonly referred to as "woodchucks." The town center is also listed as a census-designated place (CDP). The northern portion of the town is situated in the region considered Northwestern CT and the far eastern portions are part of the Litchfield Hills region.
It is located roughly 55 miles from Hartford, 75 miles from Springfield, 100 miles from Albany and 85 from NYC.
New Milford is home to the Canterbury School, a well-known Roman Catholic boarding school. The school's Chapel of Our Lady features the Jose M. Ferrer Memorial Carillon. The house that inspired the 1946 novel and 1948 film, Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, still stands in the Merryall section of town.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Sports
- 5 Education
- 6 Infrastructure
- 7 Notable people
- 8 Movies filmed in New Milford
- 9 References
- 10 External links
Weantinock were a sub-group of the Paugussett Nation who lived the area of modern New Milford both before and during the colonial era. They were a farming and fishing culture, cultivating corn, squash, beans and tobacco, and fishing in freshwater areas. They may have also travelled to the coast to fish in summer months.
In 1707, John Noble Sr., previously of Westfield, Massachusetts and his eight-year-old daughter Sarah Noble were the first Anglo-American settlers. (A public school was later named after Sarah Noble.) They were soon joined by others who had also bought land there.
On October 17, 1711, twelve families (including about 70 people) petitioned the General Assembly to create the town, together with the associated privilege of levying a tax to support a minister. With the legislature's approval, the town was organized the next year. The residents soon secured Daniel Boardman to preach and he was ordained as the minister of the Congregational Church on November 21, 1716.
Roger Sherman lived in New Milford before moving to New Haven in 1761. He later became a member of the Continental Congress and signed both the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution. The lot of his former house is the site of the present Town Hall.
During the American Revolution, the 7th Connecticut Regiment (also known as 19th Continental Regiment) was raised in town on September 16, 1776. The regiment, and the New Milford men in it, would see action in the Battle of Brandywine, Battle of Germantown and the Battle of Monmouth. In total, the town "sent 285 men to fight in the War out of a total population of 2,776."
The Boardman family
- David Sherman Boardman (1768–1864), was the youngest child of Deacon Sherman and Sarah (Bostwick) Boardman. He became a lawyer in town and later chief judge in Litchfield County Court. He served as judge of probate for the district of New Milford in 1805, and held the place by successive annual appointments for sixteen years. He was elected Representative to the General Assembly eight times.
- Elijah Boardman (1760–1823) was a U.S. Senator representing Connecticut. Born in New Milford, he was educated by private tutors, and served in the American Revolutionary War.
- William Whiting Boardman (1794–1871), a U.S. Representative born in town, was the son of Elijah Boardman. He was a Connecticut state senator in the fourth district, 1830–32, a member of the Connecticut State House of Representatives, 1836–39, 1845, and 1849–51; Speaker of the Connecticut State House of Representatives, 1836, 1839, and 1845; US Representative from Connecticut's second district, 1840-43. He died in New Haven, Connecticut, and is interred at Grove Street Cemetery in New Milford.
19th and 20th centuries
In the second half of the 19th century, many new industries came to town. The Water Witch Hose Company No. 2, local telephone and electricity companies, and newspapers were all founded. Factories in town made buttons, paint and varnish, hats, furniture, pottery, lime, dairy products and pasteboard, among other goods. Tobacco became the major crop in the area, and tobacco warehouses sprang up to handle its storage and processing before sales.
In 1931 Housatonic Valley Insurance Agency was established, and became one of the founding members of the New Milford Chamber of Commerce later that year. Today Housatonic Valley Insurance Agency is still located on the New Milford Green in the charming historic white colonial house built in 1795, directly next door to Town Hall.
In 1942 Buck's Rock Camp was founded off of Bucks Rock Road, and has remained in operation ever since.
The population of New Milford was 4,804 in 1900; by 1910, the population had grown to 5,010. As of 2002, the town had a population of approximately 28,000.
The town has constructed a 1,000,000-gallon sewer plant expansion on West Street, a sewer pump station on Boardman Road, reconstruction of the Rte. 67/ Grove Street Intersection, and ambulance facility on Scovill Street.
The town has added a skate park at Young's Field (2006), reconstructed the tennis and basketball courts at Young's Field (2010), reconstructed the basketball court at Williamson Park in Gaylordsville (2010), and improved Lynn Deming Park (2017), and is working on the New Milford River Trail, which will eventually join the existing 1.5-mile Sega Meadows Park trail (2012), 3.5 miles of River Road, and the 0.25-mile Young's Field River Trail (2017) and link them to the greenways in the neighboring towns of Brookfield and Kent. Several streetscape projects were completed by the Department of Public Works (DPW) with grant money on Church Street, Whittlesey Avenue, and the west side of East Street (2009/2010). Candlewoof Dog Park is completed on Pickett District Road. A bocce ball court was constructed at the Senior Center by Boy Scout Troop 66 (2012).
National Register of Historic Places sites
- Boardman's Bridge — Boardman Road at Housatonic River, northwest of New Milford (added June 13, 1976)
- Carl F. Schoverling Tobacco Warehouse — 1 Wellsville Avenue (added May 12, 1982)
- E. A. Wildman & Co. Tobacco Warehouse — 34 Bridge Street (added November 20, 1988)
- Hine-Buckingham Farms — 44, 46, and 48 Upland Road, 78, 81 Crossman Road (added June 7, 2004)
- Housatonic Railroad Station — Railroad Street (added April 1, 1984)
- J. S. Halpine Tobacco Warehouse — West and Mill Streets (added 1982)
- John Glover Noble House (added September 29, 1977)
- Lover's Leap Bridge — south of New Milford on Pumpkin Hill Road (added June 13, 1976)
- Merritt Beach & Son Building — 30 Bridge Street (added May 28, 1992)
- Merryall Union Evangelical Society Chapel — Chapel Hill Road (added July 5, 1986)
- New Milford Center Historic District — Bennitt and Elm Streets, Center Cemetery, East, South Main, Mill, and Railroad Streets (added July 13, 1986)
- United Bank Building — 19-21 Main Street (added May 12, 1982)
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 63.7 square miles (165 km2), making it the largest town in Connecticut. 61.6 square miles (160 km2) of it is land and 2.1 square miles (5.4 km2) of it (3.31%) is water. The CDP corresponding to the town center has a total area of 3.4 square miles (8.8 km2). 3.4 square miles (8.8 km2) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) of it (0.88%) is water.
New Milford has a humid continental climate, with mild to warm humid summers and cold to very cold winters. The highest recorded temperature was 103 °F (39 °C) in July 1966, while the lowest recorded temperature was -15 °F (-26 °C) in 1968. Snowfall is generally frequent in winter while average precipitation is most common in September.
|Climate data for New Milford, Connecticut|
|Record high °F (°C)||71
|Average high °F (°C)||36
|Average low °F (°C)||19
|Record low °F (°C)||−18
|Average precipitation inches (mm)||3.76
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2000, there were 27,121 people, 10,018 households, and 7,273 families residing in the town. The population density was 440.4 people per square mile (170.0/km²). There were 10,710 housing units at an average density of 173.9 per square mile (67.1/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 94.33% White, 1.41% Black or African American, 0.15% Native American, 1.91% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.68% from other races, and 1.50% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.77% of the population. The estimated 2010 population is generally assumed to be nearing 30,000 with a summer population of perhaps 35,000.
There were 10,018 households out of which 38.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.0% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.4% were non-families. 21.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.15.
In the town, the population was spread out with 27.4% under the age of 18, 5.8% from 18 to 24, 33.1% from 25 to 44, 24.2% from 45 to 64, and 9.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.8 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $65,354, and the median income for a family was $75,775. Males had a median income of $50,523 versus $34,089 for females. The per capita income for the town was $29,630. About 2.1% of families and 3.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.7% of those under age 18 and 5.5% of those age 65 or over.
As of the census of 2000, there were 6,633 people, 2,756 households, and 1,603 families residing in the town center CDP. The population density was 1,955.7 inhabitants per square mile (755.5/km²). There were 2,872 housing units at an average density of 846.8 per square mile (327.1/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 93.19% White, 1.82% Black or African American, 0.27% Native American, 2.11% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.84% from other races, and 1.75% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.09% of the population.
There were 2,756 households out of which 30.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.4% were married couples living together, 11.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.8% were non-families. 33.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 3.07.
In the CDP the population was spread out with 24.4% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 35.9% from 25 to 44, 20.3% from 45 to 64, and 11.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females, there were 93.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.5 males.
The median income for a household in the CDP was $48,186, and the median income for a family was $58,367. Males had a median income of $38,571 versus $26,833 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $22,912. About 3.7% of families and 6.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.7% of those under age 18 and 6.7% of those age 65 or over.
New Milford is home to the GMS Rowing Center. Founded in 2003, it manages a US Rowing Training Center Program. It has a highly successful Middle and High School (Junior) Program which competes at Youth National Championships, Junior National Team Trials, The "Royal Canadian Henley" and has sent rowers to the Junior World Rowing Championships. In 2011 GMS also had rowers representing the USA at the Under 23 World Championships in Amsterdam, The Netherlands and at the World Rowing Championships at Bled, Slovenia.
- Northville Elementary School
- Hill & Plain Elementary School
- Canterbury School
- Faith Preparatory
- Education without Walls
New Milford is served by fixed-bus routes of the Housatonic Area Regional Transit. The main highways of the town are Route 7 and Route 202. There has been continued talk about a proposal to electrify and extend the Danbury Branch of the Metro-North Railroad north of Danbury to New Milford, including a Rail Study in 2008  and proposed state legislation in 2017.
The long-awaited completion of Super 7 happened in November 2009. The realignment of Grove Street and Prospect Hill Road (Rte. 67) was completed in the Fall of 2010. The Department of Public Works (DPW) awarded Stimulus ARRA Project 95-249 Grove Street (south of Anderson Ave) and Boardman Road (west of O+G Quarry). This was completed in the fall of 2010.
Notable residents include:
- Léonie Fuller Adams (1899-1988) poetry consultant to Library of Congress (now titled poet laureate)
- Charles A. Beard (1874-1948) historian, activist
- Mary R. Beard (1876-1958) historian, activist
- Elizabeth Bentley (1908-1963), spy
- David Sherman Boardman (1768-1864) lawyer, judge and politician
- Elijah Boardman (1760-1823) U.S. senator
- William Whiting Boardman (1794-1871)U.S. congressman
- Kenny Coolbeth (1977-) motorcycling champion
- Scott Crossfield (1973-2006) Theatre Designer
- Fortunato Depero (1892-1960) painter, writer, sculptor and graphic designer
- Jack Douglas (1908-1989) writer
- Florence Eldridge (1901-1988) stage and screen actress
- Diane von Fürstenberg (1946-) fashion designer, who plans to be buried at her 100-acre (0.40 km2) farm in town
- Lillian Hellman (1905-1984) playwright
- Skitch Henderson (1918-2005) pianist, composer and conductor
- Ian Hunter (1939-) English singer-songwriter
- Eric Hodgins (1899-1971) author
- Keith Kane, guitarist and founding member of Vertical Horizon
- Eartha Kitt (1927-2008) singer, actress, author
- Columbia Lancaster (1803-1893) U.S. Congressman
- Max Lowenthal (1888–1971) lawyer and civil servant
- Fredric March (1897-1975) film and stage actor
- Hap Moran (1901-1994) football player
- Dhan Gopal Mukerji (1890–1936) writer, author, Newbery Medal recipient 1928
- William H. Noble (1788-1850) U.S. Congressman
- M. Scott Peck (1936-2005) psychiatrist and self-help author
- Thomas Riley US ambassador to Morocco 2003-2009
- Joan Rivers (1933-2014) comedian, actress, writer, producer
- Roger Sherman (1721-1793) signer of Declaration of Independence and Constitution
- Jean Simmons (1929-2010) British actress
- Walker Todd (1786-1840) was an American lawyer, member of the New York State Senate (2nd D.) and Inspector of Mount Pleasant State Prison
- Solmous Wakeley (1794-1867) pioneer Wisconsin legislator
- Joseph J. Went (1930-) general
- Horace Wheaton (1803-1882) U.S. Congressman
- Theodore White (1915-1986) political author of the 1960s–1970s
Movies filmed in New Milford
The following movies with their actual or expected year of release have been filmed in New Milford:
- The Brass Ring (1983) (TV)
- Mr. Deeds (2002)
- Zero Day (2003)
- The Ballad of Jack and Rose (2005)
- The Six Wives of Henry LeFay (2007)
- The Private Lives of Pippa Lee (2009)
- 25/8 renamed to My Soul to Take (2009)
- "Town of New Milford Connecticut". New Milford, Connecticut. Retrieved September 22, 2012.
- The Connecticut Magazine: An Illustrated Monthly. Connecticut Magazine Company. 1903. p. 333.
- "Mayor". Town of New Milford, Connecticut. Retrieved August 13, 2017.
- "Town Council Members". Town of New Milford, Connecticut. Retrieved August 13, 2017.
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: New Milford
- U.S. Census Bureau Population Estimates Archived 2011-06-29 at the Wayback Machine.
- Charles W. Brilvitch (2007). A History of Connecticut's Golden Hill Paugussett Tribe. The History Press. pp. 13–14. ISBN 978-1-59629-296-3.
- "New Milford History", Learning Zone section, Historical Society of New Milford Website, accessed August 2, 2006
- "History", New Milford Congregational Church, accessed 23 Dec 2010
- "Average weather for New Milford, CT". weather.com. Retrieved February 1, 2014.
- "Monthly Averages for New Milford, CT". Weather.com. Retrieved 18 February 2014
- "Population of Connecticut Towns 1756-1820". State of Connecticut. June 3, 2008.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved June 4, 2016.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2016.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "New Milford Town Web Site 12/27/2007: Rail Study". Retrieved 2008-03-04.
- "New bill would require passenger rail to New Milford 01/10/2017". Retrieved 2017-10-01.
- Carlson, Wendy, "Did I Mention The Graves Out Back?", news article, The New York Times, page 1 of the "Real Estate" section, April 18, 2010, retrieved same day
- Catlin, Roger (2001-02-01). "Vertical Horizon Reaches For Stars: From Acoustic To Metal, Band Finally Hits It Big". Hartford Courant. Retrieved 2011-07-17.
- "Famous alumni of the Canterbury School". NewsTimes. Retrieved 2018-04-22.
- Death notice in American Masonic Register and Literary Companion (issue of September 5, 1840; pg. 7)
-  "Internet Movie DataBase" Web site, "New Milford, Connecticut" Web page, accessed August 2, 2006
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