TOWN HALLS OF CONNECTICUT

Welcome: Website Overview

This site is dedicated to the Town Halls, both current and historic, in the state of Connecticut. Connecticut is a small state with a land area of only 5,553 square miles. It is 110 miles long and 70 miles wide at its farthest points and has a population of three and a half million people. Although a small state, it is comprised of 169 towns, each with their own Town Hall and their own governance.

History: How and Why Connecticut Towns Were Formed

Connecticut was founded in the 1630’s by English Puritans who came down from Massachusetts and made Congregationalism the established religion of the colony. When there were enough residents in an area to afford a church and a minister the group applied to the CT General Assembly for permission to form an “Ecclesiastical Society.”  These Ecclesiastical Societies, became the actual basis for the creation of towns in Connecticut.

At that time, people were required to attend Sunday all-day worship at their church. As the mainly agricultural population grew in numbers and in distribution, travel to their church became more and more difficult, as their church became too far for them to get to. The fact that people needed a church to be closer to their homes and their farms, required them to form a new town. The CT General Assembly approved a new town once a group could prove it had a Congregational Church and a minister. Thus there was a direct relationship in Connecticut between the formation of churches and the creation of towns. This remained the law until 1818 when the new CT State Constitution removed any mentioned of a state religion. It also removed the requirement of one being a property owner to vote.

The first Connecticut town settled was Windsor in 1633, and the last town to be separately incorporated was West Haven in 1921. Many Connecticut towns broke away from larger towns. Through this process Connecticut eventually became a state of 169 towns.

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Original Town Halls: Come back soon!

This website continues to have information added to it. At this time, every current town hall has been photographed and posted to the site, and where possible, information on the history of each town hall accompanies the photograph. Of particular note is that there are over 40 current or former Town Halls in the state that are listed separately or as part of an historic district on the United States National Register of Historic Places.

Many towns have preserved their old Town Hall buildings, some of them given a new life as a museum, historical society or senior center. Images of the older Town Halls are being added to the photographs of the town’s current Town Hall. An example of this can be found by looking at the town of Ashford.

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Search by Town: Click below

You may search for a town and its information by the first letter of the name of the town or by the county it is in. Click on the photograph of any Town Hall to read about it and view a larger image of the Town Hall.