1924: City Official Outing at Laurel Brook

City official outing 1924
Click for larger image.

From the back of the photograph:

Front row: Oscar Welker, Daton Baldwin, Phil Stueck, Kent Thompson, Phil Anderson, Bill Clew, Eugene Mead, Perry Closon, Joseph Roano, Burt Lane, Sam Mattes, Dr. George E. Bitgood.

Second row: George Tierney, Allen Holmes, Bart Stone, ———, ———, Art McDowell, Charlie Fisk, ———, Elton Clark, ———, John Rogers, ———, Phil Bergren, John Connery, ———.

Back row: Fred Phelps, John Tobin, Phil Brown, Frank Neville, Fred B. Fountain, J. Warren Mylchreest, Bob Spear, ———,  Gordon Baldwin, Al Hughes (?), Joe Kinsella, Al Herd, Assel Packard, ———, Carroll Campbell, ———, Chief of Fire Dept George Pitt, Chief of Police Charles A. Anderson, Sheriff Burt Thompson, Captain of Police Joseph Dunn, Charles Chafee.

1851: A Fossil Kangaroo

A fossil Kangaroo has been discovered in a quarry near Middletown, Conn. It contains all the characteristic features of the animal too plain for any mistake. The animal was four feet long, with a tail of 24 inches, strong and large at its base, and tapering.

From the Gallipolis Journal (Gallipolis, Ohio), Thursday, June 19, 1851.

1818: Public Vaccination

The inhabitants of the town of Middletown are notified, that Doct. Syvanus Fansher has arrived in town, and will commence the general Vaccination, authorized by law.

The committee for the city, have appointed the following times and places for that purpose, viz–On Friday of the present week at the South Meeting-House, from the hours of 7 until 12 o’clock in the forenoon, and at the Lecture Room from 2 to 7 o’clock in the afternoon of the same day–and on Saturday following at the Brick School-House in the north District–to commence at 2 o’clock in the afternoon.

The Gentlemen of the Committee appointed for other parts of the town, will consult with Doct. Fansher and assign time and places for a similar purpose.

The recent cases of natural Small Pox which have occurred in East-Haddam and other neighboring towns, it is presumed will excite Parents and Guardians to embrace (free of expense) the present opportunity of shielding their children and domestics against that infectious distemper. The Committee will attend on the days of Vaccination.



JOSEPH HUBBARD,     } Committee for the City.



June, 1818.

From The Middlesex Gazette, Thursday, June 18, 1818.

1814: First Congregational Church

The fire which consumed this splendid edifice was communicated by an incendiary, through an aperture in one of the exterior pillars, which had a direct communication with the roof. This latter circumstance rendered the exertions of the citizens unavailing. Nearly all the portable articles attached to the building were preserved. We learn that an insurance had been effected to the amount of ten thousand dollars.

This church was erected in 1795, and cost, including an elegant organ and bell, nearly thirty thousand dollars.–It is computed that one, of equal size and beauty, could not at this time be built under forty thousand dollars.–We understand that subscriptions will be speedily opened, to assist the society in rearing with promptitude, another temple for the worship of ALMIGHTY GOD.

From the Connecticut Spectator (Middletown, Conn.), June 17, 1814.

1906: To Wed Middletown Belle

(Special to the Eagle.)

Middletown, Conn., June 16–The leading social event of the month in this city will be the marriage of Miss Helen Merriam, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Merriam, of Washington street, to Minna S. Cornell, son of Mr. and Mrs. Minna S. Cornell, of 437 Hancock street, Brooklyn, which will occur at the home of Miss Merriam’s parents, on Tuesday afternoon, June 19, at 8 o’clock.

Miss Merriam is a charming girl, just out of her teens, tall, athletic and popular in society. She is a lover of automobiling and yachting, and other sports.

Her father is secretary of the Rockfall Woolen Company and the heaviest stockholder in the Kirby Manufacturing Company, two of the large manufacturing interests of this city.

Mr. Cornell is a graduate of Wesleyan University, class of ’05, and it was during his college course that he became acquainted with Miss Merriam. He is secretary of the Middletown Silver Company, of this city.

From The Brooklyn Daily Eagle (Brooklyn, New York), Sunday, June 17, 1906.

1906: Motor Boat and Deer

Exciting Race Ends in Escape of Frightened Animal After Long Chase.

Middletown, Conn.–F. S. Peck of this city and E. N. Peck of East Haddam had an exciting race one day recently with a doe in the river opposite the Champion House at East Haddam.

The Pecks were running up the river in their fast motor boat when they saw a doe swimming out of the mouth of the Salmon river and headed across the Connecticut toward the west shore. The river is very wide at this point and the occupants of the boat decided to catch the deer before she reached the Tylerville shore. The deer saw their intention and swam with great speed, but the boat finally drewe alongside so that the occupants could touch the animal’s head. As soon as the doe touched bottom near the Tylerville shore she gave a tremendous jump, then leaped a fence and sped up across the railroad and disappeared in the woods.

Last summer some people who were cruising near Essex saw a buck swimming the river, and on drawing alongside one of the occupants tried to grasp the animal’s horns. Thereupon the deer lifted a front hoof from the water and gave the boatman a lunge in the chest which nearly shoved him into the water.

From The Chanute Daily Tribune (Chanute, Kansas), Friday, June 15, 1906.

1797: Thomas Starr Hanged for Murder

Thomas Starr was a descendant of a wealthy merchant family in Middletown, Connecticut. Starr was about twenty-five years old when he committed the murder of Samuel Cornwall on August 2, 1796. Starr stabbed Cornwall seven times with what is said to be a “penknife.”

Cornwall died eleven days after the stabbing. Records do not reveal any motive for the crime. Starr was convicted and hanged in front of a large crowd in Middletown on June 14, 1797.

Story contributed by Kimberly Singh.

1822: A Medicinal Spring in Middletown

The subscriber informs the public that he has fitted up a building for the purpose of Bathing and Showering with the water of a Mineral Spring, the medicinal qualities of which are the same as those of Ballstown and Saratoga Springs; it being strongly impregnated with iron sulphur, and other minerals. Many persons in Middletown and its vicinity can testify that they have received great benefit from the use of this water.–It was been ascertained to be almost an infallible cure for all cutaneous complaints. The spring is about three miles north of the City of Middletown, on the Hartford Turnpike. Board can be procured near the spring.


June 13


HADDAM June 3, 1822.

On Friday last, the friends of the missionary cause of this town, devoted themselves to preparing a house frame for the Sandwich Island Mission. The necessary timber being generously given by a few individuals, a number of farmers and carpenters, after uniting early in prayer and a missionary hymn, engaged in the work with great cheerfulness and vigour, and by night almost completed the important undertaking. Such scenes are peculiarly pleasing to the Christian, wishing for the extension of the Redeemer’s kingdom, and very useful to those who are engaged in them. It is hoped that the religious public will be deeply interested in the reinforcement to this mission, and be more active in preparing every thing necessary for their support and comfort.

From The Middlesex Gazette (Middletown, Conn.), June 13, 1822.

June 12 – Middletown 366


Middletown, June 12

Sunday last two brothers by the name of Barns, were taken up on suspicion of being concerned in several burglaries; one of them acknowledged the facts, and turned evidence, from whom it was discovered that they had a cave a few miles from this city, in which were found the goods of Mr. Lemuel Storrs, and a great variety of other articles which had been lately stolen from this and the neighboring towns. They had with them more than 30 keys, which on trial would unlock almost every store in town.

On the above evidence two persons by the name of Osborn were taken in Waterbury, for being accomplices with the Barns’–on examination, Daniel Osborn, Peter Osborn, and Noah Barns, were ordered to be committed to gaol in Haddam, for trial next Superior Court in this County; and David Barns was likewise committed, to secure his testimony against them.

From the Hampshire Chronicle (Springfield, Massachusetts), Wednesday, June 16, 1790.

Middletown, Thursday, June 12, 1817.


James Monroe, by John Vanderlyn [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
James Monroe, by John Vanderlyn [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Notwithstanding the unobtrusive manner in which the President travels, and his known desire to avoid parade, it is announced, in all the cities, that it is in contemplation to treat him with distinguished respect, and to receive him with such salutations as beseem the citizens of a Republic. In this design there appears to be a rivalship in courtesy between the political parties, indicative, not only of the melioration of party asperity, but of the prevalence of a lofty national spirit.

Nat’l Int.


The President departed from this city on Saturday, for the northward, in pursuance of the intention we some time ago announced, to make a tour of observation through the Eastern and Northern States and Territories. Health and happiness attend him! Gen. Swift, Chief of Engineers, who is to accompany him, waits his arrival in Baltimore. On the same day, the President’s family took the road for his seat in Virginia.  Ib.

From The Middlesex Gazette (Middletown, Conn.), Thursday, June 12, 1817.

1923: Outlines Motor Trip to Middletown, Conn.

To alumni and friends of Wesleyan University, who contemplate this week attending the annual commencement at Middletown, Conn., the following automobile route, recommended by Norman Johnstone, secretary of Wyoming Valley Motor Club, at the best, will be of practical interest:

Wilkes-Barre 0
Pocono Summit 37
Stroudsburg 51
Dingham’s Ferry 76
Layton 79.5
Branchville 87.5
Lafayette 92.4
Franklin Furnace 99.7
New foundland 111.6
Prompton 122.6
Suffern 134.6
West Nyack 145.3
Nyack (Cross Ferry) 147.8
Tarrytown 148.9
White Plains 156
Bedford 170
Danbury 193
Waterbury 224
Meriden 239
Middletown 248
From the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, The Evening News (Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania), Monday, June 11, 1923.