Facts and Information About Connecticut

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Connecticut is a state located in the northeastern part of the United States of America. Rhode Island borders it to the east, Massachusetts borders to the north, and New York borders to the west. The capital city of Connecticut is Hartford, but its most populous city is Bridgeport. The state gets its name from the Connecticut River that runs across it. Many Native American tribes first inhabited the region that is now called Connecticut. In fact, the word Connecticut is derived from the Algonquian word for “long tidal river.”

  • The official nickname of the state is “The Constitution State.” In 1639, Connecticut adopted “The Fundamental Orders” that had some of the features of a constitution of a democratic government, making it one of the oldest settlements to have such a document and, hence, earning it the nickname. Unofficially, it is also sometimes called “The Nutmeg State” or “The Provisions State.”
  • Connecticut is home to the prestigious Ivy League Yale University established in 1701. Yale granted the first medical diploma and the first Ph.D. degree in the USA in 1729 and 1861, respectively.
  • Connecticut is only one of two states (the other one being Rhode Island) where all county governments have been abolished. Under the state level, all governance happens on the city and town level. These two states are also the only states to have never ratified the 18th amendment of the Constitution that established Prohibition.
  • Connecticut is a state of many firsts:
    • In 1878, the first telephone book was issued here; it only contained 50 names.
    • The first automobile law in the USA was passed in this state in 1901; it set the speed limit at 12 mph.
    • The first hamburger was served at Louie’s Lunch in New Haven in 1895.
    • The first FM radio station called WDRC-FM started in Hartford in 1939.
    • It was home to the first public art museum established in 1842.
    • The state of Connecticut has also been the site of the first Polaroid camera (1934), the first helicopter (1939), the first color television (1948), the first lollipop-making machine (1908), the first blast furnace (1762), the first steel mill (1728), production of first revolver (1836), production of first portable typewriter (1843), and the first pay phone (1877).
  • The Hartford Courant is the oldest newspaper still in circulation. It was established in 1764, and, as the name suggests, it is based in Hartford, Connecticut.
  • The Scoville Memorial Library in Salisbury is the oldest public library in America; its collection of books started in 1771 and has now grown to over 30,000 items.
  • Mary Kies, a citizen of South Killingly, Connecticut, was the first woman to receive a U.S. patent (for a method of weaving) in 1809.
  • In 1974, Connecticut elected Ella Grasso as its state Governor; it was the first state to elect a female governor.
  • Connecticut has a state ship—U.S.S. Nautilus—which is the world’s first nuclear-powered submarine. It was built in Groton, Connecticut, in 1954. The Submarine Force Museum in Groton, which is the home of the ship, is also the official submarine museum of the U.S. Navy.
  • Connecticut has also been home to quite a few famous people:
    • It was the birthplace of Noah Webster, the author of the famous Webster Dictionary.
    • Eli Whitney was born in New Haven. He went on to patent the cotton gin in 1794.
    • The U.S. president George W. Bush was born in New Haven in 1946.
    • Among others are Oliver Ellsworth (Chief Justice of the Supreme Court), Mark Twain (author), Katharine Hepburn (actress), Charles Goodyear (developer of vulcanized rubber), John Mayer (musician), and Morris Waite (Supreme Court Justice)

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