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Historical Society of East Hartford


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References to historical programs are listed on this page in one of the following 2 sections:
"Historical Society Programs"
or "Other Historical Programs & Societies of Interest"
Latest updates are in bold print.

Please feel free to suggest programs. Email webmaster@hseh.org; include HSEH in the subject line.

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Historical Society Programs

09/06/17 - “The Sinking of the RMS Lusitania” with Jason Scappaticci
Program open to the public
Wednesday, September 20 7:30pm
First Congregational Church, 837 Main St

9/5/17 - Historical Society of East Hartford Museums in Martin Park Closed for the Winter
To Reopen Summer 2018
Martin Park, Burnside Ave

The Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail (W3R-NHT), 2nd Anniversary Commemoration

Reminder News "Fourth of July look-back at East Hartford’s role in the Revolutionary War"


Other Historical Programs & Societies of Interest

CT Gravestone Network Symposium
Saturday April 8, 2017
9:00am - 4:00pm
East Hartford Senior Citizens Center

CT Gravestone Network on Facebook

CT Society of Genealogists

Friends of Center Cemetery

Letterboxing in East Hartford

Abraham Lincoln Remembered in New Sculpture Garden

Manchester Historical Society Events

Simsbury Historical Society
2nd in Genealogical Series Available "A Sense of Place"


Historical Society Programs

09/06/17 - “The Sinking of the RMS Lusitania” with Jason Scappaticci

Program open to the public
Wednesday, September 20 7:30pm
First Congregational Church, 837 Main St

Lusitania Sinking Jason Scappaticci will be our guest speaker for the Historical Society’s next program. He will join us at the First Congregational Church on the evening of Wednesday, September 20, 2017 and share another documentary/program with us.

Mr. Scappaticci will be remembered from his lecture last year about the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair. Jason is currently the Director of Transitional Programs at MCC and he serves on the Manchester Board of Education. We welcome him back for another informative evening.

His PowerPoint Presentation this month will center upon a World War I event: “The Sinking of the RMS Lusitania”. This British-made cruise ship of the Cunard Line was torpedoed by a German U-Boat off the coast of Ireland on May 7, 1915 - more than 100 years ago. This incident outraged the American public. 128 United States citizens, including men, women and children who were sailing from New York City to England, lost their lives. This action on the part of the Imperial German Navy hastened President Woodrow Wilson’s decision to enter the conflict, known afterward as, “The Great War”.

The public is welcome to join the Society at 7:30pm for Jason's program at no cost. There is ample free parking behind the church.

Bette Daraskevich, Vice President/Program


9/5/17 - Historical Society of East Hartford Museums in Martin Park Closed for the Winter

to Reopen Summer 2018
Martin Park, Burnside Ave

The Historical Society of East Hartford exhibits three historic buildings for preserving and presenting some of East Hartford's history - the National Register, 1761 Makens Bemont House (aka Huguenot House), the 1820s Goodwin Schoolhouse, and the ca 1850 Burnham Blacksmith Shop. All buildings were originally built at various locations throughout East Hartford and in recent years were moved to their present site in Martin Park.

During the summer months we welcome you and will be delighted to show you these historic buildings. Please note the following tour information.
  • Open: Huguenot House (Bemont House), Schoolhouse, & Blacksmith Shop
    - Summer Sundays 2018
  • Time: 1:00pm - 4:00pm
  • Place: Martin Park, Burnside Avenue, East Hartford
  • Parking: in Martin Park across from the houses; no fee
  • Cost: none, but donations are welcome
  • Info: call* 860-528-0716.
*Calling this number is the best way to get visitor information. Do not send mail to these houses as no mail is delivered to them. For contact information see To Contact Us


shield The Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail (W3R-NHT),
2nd Anniversary Commemoration

Two years ago on March 30, 2009 President Obama signed the Wilderness Protection / Omnibus Public Lands bill establishing a new national, historic trail. It is named the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail (W3R-NHT) and extends approximately 600 miles from Newport and Boston to Yorktown. In 1780 French General Rochambeau and his French army landed in Newport to help us in our Revolution. In 1781 this army left Newport and crossed Connecticut (marching through East Hartford) to join General Washington and his American army near White Plains, New York. From there the two armies marched south together along this route, fought side by side at Yorktown, and with the help of Admiral DeGrasse’s French fleet won the Battle of Yorktown. This victory effectively ended our Revolution and brought us independence. The following year the French army returned north on this route to Boston and then the Caribbean. The national recognition given this route commemorates the joint American and French efforts in winning our independence.

Today we can follow this national, historic route from Massachusetts and Rhode Island through Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Washington D.C., and into Virginia. It is a living reminder - with relevant, historic buildings and sites and people who tell its stories - of what was done and, in part, how we came to be who we are. The Rochambeau boulder on the green near the overpass on Silver Lane is an early 20th century East Hartford site. This boulder has had plaques placed on it over the years to remind passers-by of the French army which camped nearby in 1781 and 1782 and of the various celebrations over the years in memory of that army. The latest plaque, the W3R plaque, was placed on the boulder in June 2006 for the 225th anniversary of the French arrival in America in 1780. Its dedication was attended by the small group of re-enactors who became the first to walk in the footsteps of the French army from Rhode Island to Yorktown; they were the 2006 America’s March to Yorktown. The marker in front of the Raymond Library is a new site. This marker, placed near the locations where Rochambeau's headquarters and his army hospital once stood, is one of twelve different W3R markers installed by Connecticut along its portion of the W3R in 2005-2006. They gratefully recall the French help we received. Follow them and read the local stories of the French army as it crossed our state to meet Washington's army. East Hartford's marker tells of the money carried in the wagons of the French army.

To help commemorate the 2nd anniversary of this national historical route we offer the following:

Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route Page Click on link to "Tour the W3R Trail" to view the route to Yorktown.

Follow the 12 W3R Markers across Connecticut installed by this state in 2005-2006 to commemorate the 225th anniversary of the aid the French army brought here.

The East Hartford Marker of 2005 stands in front of the Raymond Library on Main Street.

When the French Army Came to East HartfordThis booklet tells the story of Rochambeau and his army’s visits to East Hartford in 1781 and 1782.

Brochure with more on Rochambeau and also a short history of East Hartford.

French Army Monetary Support in the American RevolutionWhen the French army came to help Americans win their freedom it came with the understanding that France would pay for whatever the army needed. Read how the army transported its funds, sought help in getting hard cash to pay its troops, and used its money to help pay the American army.

Washington-Rochambeau National Historic Trail
Official National Park Service Website


Other Historical Programs of Interest

Ongoing - Friends of Center Cemetery (FCC)

Center Cemetery was an 'east of the CT River' Hartford cemetery until 1783 when East Hartford separated from Hartford. Center Cemetery was the 2nd oldest cemetery in Hartford and is the oldest in East Hartford. It was founded in 1709.

Today Friends of Center Cemetery, a dedicated group of cemetery historians, is protecting and preserving what it can in the cemetery and about the cemetery.

Visit the Friends on their website and on face book.


Ongoing - Letterboxing in East Hartford

Search East Hartford for the 'elegant French officer' stamp and the freed slave stamp and more! Have some fun while learning about East Hartford's past, seeing some historic sites in town, and solving orienteering challenges!

Go to Letterboxing North America, press 'Search for Boxes', enter 'Connecticut' for the state, 'East Hartford' for the city, and press 'Search Boxes' to bring up East Hartford letterboxing sites.


Ongoing - Abraham Lincoln Remembered in New Sculpture Garden

Check out the new Lincoln Sculpture Garden, fifteen sculptures depicting events in the life of Abraham Lincoln and his legacy: his early careers, his favorite horse "Old Bob", his work on the transcontinental railroad, his civil war legacy, and more.

These sculptures have only recently been permanently installed on the Founders Bridge and in the parks along both the Hartford and East Hartford sides of the CT River, primarily between the Bulkeley and Founders Bridges. The area included makes this "one of the longest open-air sculpture galleries in New England" (E Htfd Gazette, June 5, 2008, pg 13).

It was to celebrate its centennial anniversary in 2005 that the Lincoln Financial Group offered to fund this project.

For more information visit the Riverfront website.


Ongoing - Manchester Historical Society Events

Interested in learning more about the famous and near famous people and events that shaped Manchester history? Visit the website of our neighbors in the MHS, http://www.manchesterhistory.org.


Simsbury Historical Society

The Simsbury Historical Society wishes to announce that it now has on sale the 2nd in its genealogical series A Sense of Place: First Church Records Simsbury, Connecticut 1682 - 1930. This new work offers information from the Historical Society's unpublished archives.

For information about the Society visit the Simsbury Historical Society's website.