Hartford is the capital of the U.S. state of Connecticut, in Hartford County. It is located on the Connecticut River, near the center of the state. As of the 2000 census, it has a population of 121,578, but a July 1, 2002 Census estimate puts the city's population at 124,558. It is currently the third largest city in the state, after Bridgeport and just barely smaller than New Haven. Greater Hartford is also the 44th largest metro area in the country (2004 census estimate) with a population of 1,184,564.
Sometimes referred to as the "insurance capital of the world," Hartford houses many of the world's insurance company headquarters, and insurance is one of the region's major industries. Hartford and its environs are also known as "the land of steady habits." The region has a relatively low population of adults between the ages of 18 and 25, although Hartford itself has a relatively young population. Hartford's West End is home to Elizabeth Park, the oldest and largest municipal rose garden in the country. With Springfield, Massachusetts, greater Hartford constitutes New England's Knowledge Corridor.
- This is a summary. For more information, see: History of Hartford, Connecticut
After Dutch explorer Adriaen Block visited the area in 1614, fur traders from the New Netherland colony set up trade on the site as early as 1623 but abandoned their post by 1654. The neighborhood near the site is still known as Dutch Point. The first English settlers arrived in 1635. The settlement was originally called Newtown, but was changed to Hartford, in 1637, to honor the English town of Hertford.
The founding leader of the new colony, Thomas Hooker, wrote the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut, a document (ratified January 14, 1639) investing the authority to govern with the people, instead of with a higher power. Some historians believe Hooker's concepts of self-rule were the forerunners of the U.S. Constitution. Hartford was cofounded by George Stocking.
On December 15, 1814, delegations from New England gathered at the Hartford Convention to discuss secession from the United States. Later in the century, Hartford was a center of abolitionist activity.
Starting in the late 1950s, the suburbs ringing Hartford began to grow and flourish, but the capital city began a long economic decline. Due to the automobile highways including I-84 & I-91 which intersect in downtown Hartford were built which make access to the suburbs easier. People with the means to do so started moving out of the city and into the suburbs and as the years went by people kept moving farther out. In 2006 communities more than 20 minutes from the city including Canton, Simsbury, Avon, Hebron, Marlborough and Cromwell have individuals who commute daily into the city. In the last few years, revitalization efforts have started with the common goal being to get more people living downtown which before had become desolate when employees left the city.
Hartford is bordered by the towns of West Hartford, Newington, Wethersfield, East Hartford, Bloomfield, South Windsor, and Windsor. The Connecticut River separates Hartford from the region's eastern suburbs.
As of the census² of 2000, there were 121,578 people, 44,986 households, and 27,171 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,711.8/km² (7,025.5/mi²). There were 50,644 housing units at an average density of 1,129.6/km² (2,926.5/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 17.72% White, 38.05% Black or African American, 0.54% Native American, 1.62% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, 26.51% from other races, and 5.44% from two or more races. 40.52% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 44,986 households out of which 34.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 25.2% were married couples living together, 29.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.6% were non-families. 33.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.58 and the average family size was 3.33.
In the city the population was spread out with 30.1% under the age of 18, 12.6% from 18 to 24, 29.8% from 25 to 44, 18.0% from 45 to 64, and 9.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females there were 91.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $24,820, and the median income for a family was $27,051. Males had a median income of $28,444 versus $26,131 for females. The per capita income for the city was $13,428. About 28.2% of families and 30.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 41.0% of those under age 18 and 23.2% of those age 65 or over.
Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez was born in Puerto Rico and moved to Hartford in 1969, when he was 12 years old.
Central Business District/Downtown
Downtown is Hartford's primary business district. Downtown is home to such corporations as Travelers, The Hartford Steam Boiler, Phoenix Insurance, Prudential Retirement and United Technologies Corporation most of which are housed in huge office towers that were constructed over the last 20-30 years.
Downtown is also home to the Hartford City Hall, the Hartford Public Library which is undergoing a major expansion and renovation, the Old State House which is one of the oldest state houses in the nation, the Wadsworth Atheneum which is the oldest public art museum in the country, The Travelers Tower, Bushnell Park, and the State Capitol and Legislative Office Complex. Along Main Street Capital Community College and the Hartford Public Schools offices are located in the former G. Fox and Company Building. The newly renovated University of Connecticut School of Business is located at Constitution Plaza. The newest addition to downtown is at the edge of downtown at Adriaens Landing where the Connecticut Convention Center and Marriott Hartford Hotel have recently opened, the major addition to downtown has been the recent completion of Hartford 21 which is a 36 story apartment tower which has added yet another building to the city's skyline.
The Asylum Hill neighborhood was originally known as "Lords Hill." The Asylum Hill neighborhood is home to the Asylum Hill Congregational Church (organized in 1864), The Trinity Episcopal Church, and Saint Joseph's Cathedral (dedicated 1892).
There are also many insurance companies that were or are still located in the Asylum Hill area such as the Hartford Fire Insurance Company (now the Hartford Financial Services Group) and Rossia Insurance Company (now Northeastern Insurance Company). AETNA Insurance Company still remains as a major fixture along Farmington Avenue and recently announced that they will be moving more then 3400 of their Middletown, CT employees to Hartford. Also along Farmington Avenue are the homes of Mark Twain and Harriet Beecher Stowe, which are now museums.
The Connecticut Culinary Institute recently opened in the former Hastings Hotel and Conference Center next to Aetna. The Hastings was a primarily business hotel that once housed former President Bill Clinton when he came to the city. The hotel closed abruptly in 2004 but has just reopened as a second site for the Connecticut Culinary Institute. Trinity College in Hartford is also housing students at the former Hastings due to an extremly large freshman class.
The West End neighborhood, which runs from a little bit past the Mark Twain house to the West Hartford border, was mostly farmland until 1870. During the 1910s, many two and three story homes were built, giving the area more of a suburban feel.
Elizabeth Park in the West End was created in 1895, when Charles N. Pond gave his estate to the Hartford Parks Commission which created the park and named it in honor of his wife. The park boasts a playground, softball field, and other recreational facilities in addition to views of the downtown skyline. It's the oldest municipal rose garden in the United States, and one of the largest. Elizabeth Park's famous rose arches were designed by noted rosarian Theodore Wirth in 1904.
The University of Connecticut School of Law, Watkinson School and the Hartford Seminary are located in the West End. Part of Prospect Avenue boasts mansions including the Governor's Mansion. Mansions can also be found along Scarborough Street including the former residence of A. Everett Ausin (Director of Wadsworth Atheneum from 1927–1944).
The neighborhood is located just south of downtown with the Connecticut River and I-91 running at the eastern end of the neighborhood. The Charter Oak monument is located at the corner of Charter Oak Place, a historic street, and Charter Oak Avenue.
The area was home to the Colts Firearm Factory which was started by Samuel Colt, who invented the revolver. Along with building a factory, Mr. Colt also made a village with houses, a library, and recreational activities so that his employees could be close to work. Colt's estate, Armsmear, was given to the city as Colt's Park after Mr. and Mrs. Colt's death. A developer is currently in the process of renovating the whole facility to create office space and apartments for completion in 2006/2007.
The Capewell Horsenail Company was also in the area. In 1881, George Capewell invented a machine to make horseshoe nails.
The neighborhood is a conglomeration of formerly distinct neighborhoods that have been collapsed into a largely impoverished zone. Generally identified as consisting of the vast area north of Albany Avenue leading up to the Bloomfield and Windsor borders, the North End has been wracked by decades of policies such as redlining and racist city planning that transformed a once multi-cultural area of African-American, Jewish, and European immigrants into an underdeveloped zone of housing projects and slums that is nearly entirely African-American and poor. This began in the 1950s with the construction of I-84, which cut off North End from the rest of the city, followed by a high concentration of government-financed housing projects that caused the flight of the working and middle class to the suburbs.
Although many of the housing projects have been demolished in 1990s and 2000s, and were replaced with HUD home constructions designed to increase the proportion of working families in the North End, the area still suffers from underdevelopment and crime. Many of the North End's parks, such as Keney Park, are considered among the city's most dangerous. The schools are among the most segregated and underperforming in the country, with populations of impoverished and African-American students extending into the 90th percentile. Mortality rates in the North End are comparable to those of the South Bronx in New York City.
The North End is home to an active community of West Indian immigrants that provide the area with a cultural and artistic presence: the West Indian Social Club and Scott's Jamaican Bakery are two notable neighborhood institutions. The North End is also home to Weaver High School, which was also the alma mater of ER actor Eriq La Salle.
Maple Avenue, Wethersfield Avenue and Franklin Avenue are the three major roads in the South End. Franklin Avenue is known as the city's Little Italy. Although many Italians have moved just over the border to Wethersfield, Newington, and Rocky Hill, there is still a major Italian presence in the city. There are numerous Italian bakeries along Franklin Avenue. In the past few decades, there has been white flight from the South End, with many Puerto Rican families moving into the neighborhood but nevertheless there are many local favorites (restaurants, bakeries and stores) that draw people back into the South End.
The areas Italian population came out in full force when Italy won the world cup with thousands marching and driving down Franklin Avenue for hours with Italian flags.
Another resident of Hartford's South End is the South Park Inn emergency shelter.
South Green is home to Barnard Park in honor of Henry Barnard, whose home is located on Main Street. Congress Street is a historic district with many Greek Revival and Italianate homes. Hartford Hospital the largest hospital in the area and the adjacent Connecticut Children's Medical Center which is the only hospital primarily for children are also located in South Green.
Located at the southeastern corner of the city, the area is home to many industrial and commercial businesses. The neighborhood is home to the Regional Market, a 32 acre (129,000 m²) facility with 185,000 of warehouse space. Brainard Field along I-91 serves small aircraft and offers flight instruction. The Hartford Electric Light Company which started in 1921 is still operational and owned by CT Light and Power. One of the Metropolitan District Water pollution control plants is located in the south meadows. Also, the Mid-Connecticut Resource Recovery Facility, which opened in 1987 and is on 57 acres (231,000 m²), is located in the area.
Located just north of downtown along the CT River and I-91 the North Meadows is a largely commercial and industrial area that is home to many of the area's car dealerships including dealers for Mercedes Benz, BMW, Nissan, Infiniti, Jaguar, Toyota and Mazda as well as a brand new CarMax dealership. The North Meadows is also the home of the CT Expo Center which features 88,000 square feet of exhibition space, the Dodge Music Center (formerly the Meadows Music Theater), which hosts dozens of big name concerts each year, and Riverside Park.
Greater Hartford is an international center of the insurance industry, with companies such as AETNA, St. Paul Travelers, and The Hartford based in the city. The area is also home to Colt Firearms and large corporations like United Technologies (the parent corporation for Pratt & Whitney, Otis Elevator, Sikorsky Aircraft, Carrier Corporation, Hamilton Sundstrand, UTC Fire & Security and UTC Fuel Cells) and others.
Before Hartford was a big manufactoring city but like many other industrial cities many of the city's factories have closed, relocated, or downsized. Hartford has always had a niche in the insurance industry and soon became known as the "insurance capital of the world" Over the last ten years many insurance mergers have hurt Hartford. MetLife & Lincoln Financial have cut their Hartford workforce and MassMutual relocated its Hartford operations to Enfield, CT to be closer to their Springfield, MA headquarters. Recently though Hartford has shown it still has its game. St. Paul Travelers has announced they will be bringin 600 jobs to the area with 500 of them being in downtown Hartford and AETNA is moving more then 3500 employees to the city from Middletown, CT.
Hartford is not a major college town like New Haven, Connecticut or Boston, Massachuesetts. However, the area is home to several institutions such as Trinity College in the city's Frog Hollow neighborhood, the Hartford Conservatory (in the Asylum Hill neighborhood), the Institute of Living, Capital Community College (located downtown), the University of Connecticut School of Business (also downtown), Hartford Seminary (in the West End), the University of Connecticut School of Law (also in the West End) and a branch campus for Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. In neighboring West Hartford, there is The Hartt School, a performing arts conservatory attached to the University of Hartford, the University of Hartford, the University of Connecticut Greater Hartford campus, and Saint Joseph College. Hartford Public High School, the nation's second oldest high school, also finds its home in the Asylum Hill neighborhood of Hartford.
The Greater Hartford area is also home to many well-known private and parochial schools, including the Loomis Chaffee School in Windsor; Watkinson School in Hartford's West End; Kingswood-Oxford School, Northwest Catholic High School, Renbrook School and the American School for the Deaf in West Hartford; Avon Old Farms School in Avon; Westminster School, The Masters School, and Ethel Walker School in Simsbury; Miss Porter's School in Farmington, and East Catholic High School in Manchester.
Points of interest
- Bushnell Park - Located below the State Capitol and legislative office complex, this park consists of rolling lawns, statues, fountains, a lake, and a historic carousel. It is the first park in the country purchased by a municipality for public use and was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted before Central Park in New York City. The Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Arch is an 85 ft Civil War Memorial which frames the northern entrance to the park.
- Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts
- Cathedral of St. Joseph - Located just west of downtown along Farmington Avenue in the Asylum Hill neighborhood this Roman Catholic cathedral has large Parisian stained glass windows and the largest ceramic tile mural of Christ in Glory in the world.
- Charter Oak Cultural Center - Located at 21 Charter Oak Avenue, near the Charter Oak monument, COCC is housed in the first synagogue in Connecticut, built in 1876. Today it is a secular non-profit institution bringing together art, drama, music, and other cultural excursions.
- Connecticut State Capitol - Located at Bushnell Park, this large Gothic-inspired building features many statues on its exterior. It is topped with a gold leafed dome.
- Colt Arms Factory and Park - Topped with a blue and gold dome, the complex is currently being redeveloped and renovated. It will feature office space, apartments, and retail space.
- Armsmear - The Colt family estate.
- Connecticut Center for Science and Exploration - The 150,000 square foot (14,000 m²) facility will be built along the Connecticut River on Columbus Boulevard next to the convention center (opening in 2007+).
- Connecticut Convention Center - The 540,000 square foot (42,000 m²) convention center is now open, and overlooks the Connecticut River and the central business district. Attached to the center is a new 409 room 22 story Marriott Hotel (opened in late August 2005).
- Constitution Plaza - Built in the early 1960s, Constitution Plaza is a renowned redevelopment project. The complex is comprised of numerous office buildings, underground parking, a restaurant, and outdoor courtyards along with a broadcasting studio. During the holiday season the area is filled with Christmas lights, and the annual Taste of Hartford celebration is held here. The Plaza passes over the highway and connects the city to the Connecticut River.
- Elizabeth Park & Rose Garden - Located on the Hartford/West Hartford border.
- Harriet Beecher Stowe House & Research Center - The former home of Harriet Beecher Stowe is now a museum located on Farmington Avenue near the Mark Twain House.
- Hartford Civic Center - Built in 1975, the center hosts concerts and shows. It hosted the former NHL Hartford Whalers, and is also the home to the Hartford Wolf Pack AHL hockey team and is a part time home to UConn basketball team. A new 36 story apartment complex (Hartford 21) is being built directly on top of the Civic Center and will also include retail and entertainment space. It will be the tallest apartment building in New England (completed in 2006).
- Hartford Stage - One of the country's top regional theatres (winner of a Tony Award), dedicated to the production of classic works and new play development.
- Hartford Symphony Orchestra - Connecticut's premier musical organization widely recognized as one of America's leading regional orchestras
- Isham-Terry House- The house was built in 1854 as the residence of a business man. The house is designed in an Italian Villa style.
- The Mark Twain House and Museum- Once the home of Samuel Clemens, the house is now a museum located in the city's west end on Farmington Avenue.
- Old State House - The Old State House (1796) was the first in the U.S., designed by Charles Bulfinch, and recently restored with a gold-leafed dome rising from its top. The Old State House sits facing the Connecticut River in Downtown.
- Pope Park, Hartford, Connecticut
- Real Art Ways is one of the oldest alternative art spaces in the United States. It hosts a vigorous schedule of contemporary art, music, and film.
- Riverfront Recapture and Park - This park connects the downtown with the Connecticut River. It contains bike and walking trails, playing fields, and a white triangle-shaped dome covers one of the performing stages. The boat launch for a Connecticut River tour is also located here. A walkway spanning the Connecticut River leads to East Hartford.
- Saint Thomas Seminary - Located on 80 acres (324,000 m²) in Bloomfield. The seminary is three miles north of Hartford near the University of Hartford. The seminary opened in 1930 and its campus consists of rolling greens and Gothic-inspired buildings.
- Trinity College - The liberal arts college, founded in 1823, has more than 2,100 students. The college is consistently ranked as one of the best liberal arts colleges in America.
- University of Connecticut Business School - In an effort to be more accessible to part time business students, a branch of the University of Connecticut Business school opened in downtown Hartford. The building is located on Market Street just north of Constitution Plaza.
- University of Connecticut Law School - located just off Farmington Avenue, the campus includes an extensive, large Gothic-inspired library.
- University of Hartford - The University, which was founded in 1877, sits on 340 acres (1.4 km²) with a 13 acre (53,000 m²) campus on Bloomfield Avenue situated on land divided between Hartford and West Hartford minutes from downtown. There are more than 7,200 students and 86 undergraduate majors.
- The Hartt School at University of Hartford
- Wadsworth Atheneum of Art - The oldest art museum in the U.S. is located on Main Street in downtown Hartford right next to the Travelers Tower.
In the last few years, Hartford has generated renewed intrest with both local and national developers who are investing heavily in the city through a variety of projects, all of which are in different stages. These investments include everything from commercial and residential projects such as Hartford 21 to a new science center, an extensive system of riverfront trails and parks, neighborhood improvements to Park Street and Parkville, the renovation of the historic Colt building to National Park standards and significant development in the central business district.
In 1997, the city lost its professional hockey franchise, the Hartford Whalers, but efforts are being made to bring in an NHL team back to the city. City officals and developers are talking about the possility of a new city stadium to house this team.
Currently there are more then 1 billion dollars worth of private and publicly funded projects happening throughout the city's 17 neighborhoods and also in neighboring East Hartford and other suburbs. The overlying theme for development in the city was to create more activity downtown and reconnect Constitution Plaza to the waterfront, which was cut-off when Interstate 91 was constructed. A majority of the the development happening in the city is downtown but improvements are now starting to felt in all of the city's neighborhoods.
Some of the major projects include:
Adriaen's Landing: The state and privately funded project is situated on the banks of the Connecticut River along Columbus Boulevard, and connects to Constitution Plaza. The project includes the 540,000 square foot Connecticut Convention Center which opened in June 2005 and is the largest meeting space between New York City and Boston. Attached to the convention center is the 22-story, 409 room Marriott Hartford Hotel-Downtown which opened in August 2005. Being constructed next to the convention center and hotel is the 140,000 square foot Connecticut Science Center. The final component of the project is "Front Street" which sits across from the convention center and is the retail, entertainment and residential component of the entire project. Publicly funded parts of the project will include transportation improvements (see below). There has been siginificant delays in the Front Street project with the first developer being removed from the project because of lack of progress. The city underwent a search for a new developer and chose one but work is yet to begin on the retail and residential component of Front Street and the city and state may soon take action again to get the project moving. There has been talks of bringing an ESPN Zone to the Front Street retail space which would make sense considering ESPN is headquarted in nearby Bristol, CT. On the back side of Front Street the historic Beaux-Arts Hartford Times Building is being converted into the home of administrative offices for the Wadsworth Atheneum.
Hartford 21: Recently completed, on the site of the Hartford Civic Center Mall, the project includes a 36 story residential tower-the tallest residential tower between New York City and Boston. Attached to the tower is 90,000 square feet of office space and 45,000 square feet of retail space, all of which is contained in a connected complex. The Greater Hartford YMCA has opened in the complex and will soon be closing its Jewell Street site which will be knocked down for another project. Recently the developer announced that a local grocery store will be opening up in the building which will finally give downtown residents a place to buy groceries. The Hartford Civic Center Arena remains open and hosts the AHL Hartford Wolfpack, the UConn Men's and Women's Basketball teams as well as shows and concerts.
Capital Community College at the G. Fox Department Store: The 913,000 square foot former home of the G. Fox & Company Department Store on Main Street recently underwent a complete renovation and is now the new home of Capital Community College as well as offices for the State of Connecticut and ground level retail space.
Connecticut Culinary Institute: The school recently relocated their main campus to the former Hastings Hotel and Conference Center which is next to the headquarters of AETNA in the city's Asylum Hill neighborhood which is just west of downtown. The school also has a branch campus up in Suffield, CT. The Hastings Hotel & Conference Center closed abruptly back in 2004 but in when in operation served as the hotel that former president Bill Clinton stayed at when he was in the city.
Rentschler Field: Though in neighboring East Hartford, the stadium for UConn football was part of the revitalization plan for Hartford and was built on some of the lands donated by United Technologies. The bulk of the land donated will be used for technology, entertainment, lodging and retail development.
Transportation and parking improvements: Some roads were turned into pedestrian walkways to reduce gridlock, other roads were widened, or made one-way. Some intersections were also improved to better handle traffic. A large parking garage was also built in down town to ease parking problems. There was also a series of shuttle routes created, known originally as the "Downtown Circulator Project" and now run by the Greater Hartford Transit District.
New condos and apartments:
- Trumbull on the Park: This apartment community recently opened along Bushnell Park, housed in a new 11 story brick building and also has a parking garage and ground level retail space. There are also additional units housed in recently renovated historic buildings nearby on Lewis Street.
- 55 on the Park: Formerly a SNET office building, it has been turned into luxury apartments that sit along Bushnell Park. The building reopened a few years ago and was among the first new residences to open downtown in years.
- Sage Allen Building: On Main Street, the former Sage Allen Department Store building is being turned into 44 4-Bedroom townhouses. The project also includes the renovation of the Richardson Food Court and the reopening of Temple Street which will once again reconnect Main Street and Market Street. Many of these townhouses will be occupied by University of Hartford students which will help bring more young blood downtown.
- The Metropolitan: The former Hartford Telephone Company Building on Pearl Street is being converted into luxury condominiums
- American Airlines Building:Located at 901 Main Street across right across from Capital Community College at the former G. Fox Building and the Residence Inn by Marriott in the Richardson Building, 901 Main Street was home to a Korvettes Department Store and later American Airlines. Today the building is being converted into condominiums with renovated ground level retail space.
The city is served by the daily Hartford Courant newspaper, which is the country's oldest continuously published newspaper, founded in 1764. A weekly newspaper, the Hartford Advocate, also serves Hartford and the surrounding area, as does the The Hartford Guardian (a city-wide, quarterly conservative newsmagazine), The Hartford Undercurrent (an independent, monthly paper that accepts open submissions) and the Hartford Business Journal ("Greater Hartford's Business Weekly").
Other airports serving the Hartford area include:
- Brainard Airport, located in Hartford off of I-91 and close to Wethersfield, serves charter flights and local flights.
- John F. Kennedy International Airport and LaGuardia Airport in New York, New York
- Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts
- Tweed New Haven Regional Airport, located in New Haven, Connecticut, is served by US Airways Express.
Interstate bus service is provided by Bonanza Bus, Greyhound Bus and by Peter Pan Bus Lines. Additionally, there are buses for connections to smaller cities in the state. The bus station is at the train station at One Union Place in Downtown Hartford.
During the 1960s and 1970s, Hartford was something of a poster child for highway construction, and has several highways surrounding the downtown area. Still more projects were canceled, both within the city and the suburbs like the proposed I-291 beltway, due to community opposition.
I-84 runs from Danbury, on the New York border, to Union on the Massachusetts border. I-91 starts in New Haven off I-95 and continues all the way up to Canada along the Connecticut River. The two highways intersect in downtown Hartford. Their interchange remained incomplete, anticipating the extension of the Conland-Whitehead Highway to connect the two near the capitol building. This created a traffic tie-up that was unsnarled in the 1990s.
Hartford suffers from notoriously heavy traffic as a result of its suburban population, which is proportionally much larger than that of any other nearby city. As a result, thousands of people clog area highways at the start of the workday. I-84 experiences traffic from Farmington through Hartford and into East Hartford and Manchester during the rush hour. Outside of Hartford, there are delays going westbound east of the Connecticut River and delays going eastbound west of the city, while in Hartford there is traffic in both directions. I-91 has significant delays, usually south of the city in Wethersfield and Rocky Hill and north of the city in Windsor and Bloomfield.
Besides the two major interstates, the Route 2 expressway runs from Norwich in the southeastern part of the state up to East Hartford where it then intersects with I-84. There are delays through Glastonbury and East Hartford in the morning hours.
Known as the Berlin Turnpike, Routes 5 and 15 run south of the city. Before I-91, the roadway carried people from Hartford to New Haven. Along the Berlin Turnpike is an array of department stores, restaurants, and offices in Berlin, Newington, and Wethersfield. In Wethersfield, it becomes a highway-grade roadway that intersects with I-91 and I-84. Past Berlin, Route 15 becomes the Wilbur Cross Parkway in Meriden, and later, the Merritt Parkway which runs parallel to I-95 to the New York border.
Hartford's dependence on the railroad has decreased since the automobile. However, the Hartford train station at One Union Place still operates. Amtrak provides service from Hartford to Springfield, New Haven, New York, Boston, Providence, and Washington DC. The station is also a major bus station serving numerous bus companies as Hartford is a mid-way point between the popular New York to Boston route.
Currently there are preliminary plans to create a New Haven-Hartford-Springfield Commuter Rail Line with stations in communities close to I-91.
Connecticut Transit is owned by the Connecticut Department of Transportation. CTTRANSIT operates local and commuter bus service within the city and the surrounding area. Taxi service is available from the train station at 1 Union Place or by calling one to any location in the area.
Famous Hartford residents
- Michael Adams, (b. 1963), NBA player
- L. Paul Bremer, (b. 1941), ex- Administrator of Iraq and foreign service officer.
- Amy Brenneman, (b. 1964), grew up in Glastonbury. She adapted the experiences of her mother, a Connecticut Superior Court judge in Hartford, into the television series Judging Amy.
- Dominick Dunne (b. 1925) and John Gregory Dunne, (1932-2003), famous writers, were born in Hartford and grew up in West Hartford.
- Johnny Egan, (b. 1939) NBA player
- Totie Fields, (1930–1978), comedian, born and raised in Hartford.
- Dwight Freeney, (b. 1980), (NFL Indianapolis Colts) and Nykesha Sales, (b. 1976), (WNBA Connecticut Sun) were also born in the Hartford area. They resided in the northwest suburb of Bloomfield and grew up within brief walking distance of each other on Farmstead Circle. Both attended Bloomfield High School and were All State(CIAC) varsity athletes in football and basketball respectively.
- Katharine Hepburn, (1907-2003), the actress, was born in Hartford and lived on both Hawthorne and Laurel Street.
- George Keller, (1842–1935), the architect, lived in Hartford until his death. He designed the Soldier's and Sailor's Arch, the Hartford Train Station, and the Garfield Memorial in Cleveland, Ohio. His ashes, along with the ashes of his wife, Mary, are interred in turrets of the arch he designed.
- Stephen Cole Kleene, (1909–1994), mathematician
- Barbara Kolb, (b. 1939), composer
- Norman Lear, (b. 1922), went to Weaver High School in Hartford.
- Rick Mahorn, (b. 1958), and of the NBA are from Hartford.
- Mark McGrath, (b. 1968), lead singer of Sugar Ray was born in Hartford.
- Jackie McLean, (1931-2006), jazz alto saxophonist and educator
- Terry Moor, (born 1952), a former professional tennis player who was born in Hartford, and who won two singles and three doubles titles during his career. The lefthander became the number 32 of the world on October 29, 1984.
- Bill Morrissey, (b. 1951), singer
- Jim Murray, (1919–1998), longtime sports columnist of the Los Angeles Times was born and raised in Hartford.
- Frederick Law Olmstead, (1922-2003), the renowned urban and suburban planner famous for many of the New York City Parks and Stanford University's campus, was born, raised and educated in Hartford.
- Jeff Porcaro, (1954–1992), Steve Porcaro, (b. 1957), Mike Porcaro of the rock band Toto were born in Hartford. Lived early years in South Windsor before moving to Los Angeles. Father Joe Porcaro is well known as a session and drum instructor.
- Charles Nelson Reilly, (b. 1931), actor.
- Wallace Stevens, (1879–1955), the poet, was an insurance executive in Hartford.
- Harriet Beecher Stowe, (1811–1896), originally from the Litchfield area, but settled in Hartford during the 1870s. Her house on Forest Street is now open to the public and is right next to that of Mark Twain's.
- Phil Tonken (1919-2000), longtime staff announcer at New York station WOR-AM-TV, was born in Hartford.
- Sophie Tucker, (1884–1966), comedian, born and raised in Hartford.
- Mark Twain (1835–1910), moved to Hartford in 1874 and lived in Hartford for a number of years. The Mark Twain House is a national historic site. Twain, whose real name was Samuel Langhorne Clemens, wrote many of his most famous works in Hartford, including The Gilded Age, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, Roughing It, and his most read and controversial, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.
- Theodore Wirth (1863–1949) Horticuluralist and park planner
Because of Hartford's diverse population the city has numerous sister cities. They include:
- Bydgoszcz, Poland
- Caguas, Puerto Rico
- Floridia, Italy: A small suburb of Siracusa that is located on the southeastern coast of the island of Sicily.
- Freetown, Sierra Leone
- Hertford, England: The town has a population of about 24,000 and serves and has many commuters to London. The town has a country feel but is also only 20 miles north of London.
- Mangualde, Portugal: The small town in Centro Region is very close to the Serra de Estrela Mountains.
- Morant Bay, Jamaica
- New Ross, Ireland
- Ocotal, Nicaragua
- Thessaloniki, Greece
- Hartford Info Center - Information about Hartford, CT
- Capital City Economic Development Authority
- Hartford Convention and Visitor's Bureau
- HartfordInfo.org -- Information and Data about Hartford and its Neighborhoods
- Hartford, Connecticut: Landmarks, History, Neighborhoods
- Central Regional Tourism District
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- ↑ Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607–1896. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who. 1963.