WestConn’s Two Campuses: Past, Present, and Future

By Robert Rae

by Drew Mazurfrom The Echo WITHOUT TWO CAMPUSES, Western Connecticut State University (WestConn) would not be in Danbury. In his book, A People’s University, WestConn professor emeritus of history Dr. Herbert Janick discusses how WestConn evolved to a point where more living accommodations for students… Read more »

The Silver Screen in the Oval Office

Sherri Hill

  United States presidents have danced with Hollywood’s image-makers since the 1920s, a phenomenon Dr. Burton W. Peretti, professor of history at Western Connecticut State University, explores in a new book, The Leading Man.   Peretti shows that George Washington set the stage for presidents… Read more »

The Occupants of Wall Street

Joshua L. Durkin

by Joshua L. Durkin   Pungent curry stink hovered overhead in Zuccotti Park. I turned to see three men and a woman in their early twenties, I guessed, carry paper plates holding clumps of food. They looked weary, especially a grungy man of indeterminate age… Read more »

The Danbury Raid of 1777

Robert Rae

by Katie Kaimer APRIL 26 marked the anniversary of Danbury’s first attempts to gain independence in the American Revolution. Over the course of April 24 to 27, 1777, Danbury was under siege of the British. Houses were burned, livestock were slaughtered and militiamen were alerted… Read more »

The Danbury Horse.

The Danbury News Man

  The Danbury horse has a reputation above all other animals of the field.  The chief claim of the Danbury horse to public favor and notice is the facility with which he will run away.  He is always ready to run awau .  He will… Read more »

Remembering the Great Danbury Fair

Robert Rae

by Amanda Bloom It wasn’t so long ago that October meant more than apple picking and Halloween to New Englanders; October was deemed the month of “Danbury” for well over a century. The Danbury Fair, located where the Danbury Fair Mall now stands, would come… Read more »

Rachel Robinson Loves ‘42’—and with Good Reason

Patrick Scully

  Rachel Robinson, the widow of baseball great Jackie Robinson, appeared Sunday on ‘Meet the Press’ as the new movie about her husband, 42, was wrapping up its opening weekend (“Jackie Robinson Day” is Monday all across baseball). She told host David Gregory she was… Read more »

Old Domestic Tools Reworked to Reflect on Women’s History

Anson Smith

  The Housatonic Museum of Art in Bridgeport, Connecticut is pleased to announce ‘Reimagining the Distaff Toolkit’, an exhibition that explores household tools as metaphor for the social and cultural histories of women embedded in them. ‘Reimagining the Distaff Toolkit’ will be on view in the… Read more »

Mouths Agape at Cheshire’s Cartoon Museum

Christopher Baldwin

  additional reporting by Carrie Johnson   On a Saturday afternoon, Carrie, Jim Clegg of Pink Missile fame, and myself decided to take a little day trip up to Cheshire, Connecticut to visit the Barker Character, Comic and Cartoon Museum. We didn’t really know what… Read more »

Living History at the Sycamore Drive-in

Jennifer Leavitt-Wipf

photos by Louis David   Newcomers do a double take when they pass by. Old timers get nostalgic. And just about everyone, young or old, is compelled to pull into the Sycamore parking lot sooner or later, if only to travel ever so briefly back in time…. Read more »

Learn Stone Wall Building and Restoration at Weir Farm

Cassie Werne

  Weir Farm National Historic Site, the only National Park Service site dedicated to American painting, will host a two day, hands-on stone wall workshop on Saturday, July 27 and Sunday, July 28 from 9am to 3pm. The workshop will be led by Master Craftsman Neil… Read more »

In Defense of Luhrmann’s ‘Gatsby’

Allie McConnell

  So many people have their vintage panties in a twist about the apparent lack of historical accuracy in Baz Luhrmann’s long-awaited interpretation of The Great Gatsby, the novel every high school student in the United States has read.   F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel has been made into… Read more »

Hopkins Vineyard Celebrates 225 Years In Colonial Style

Janet Serra

  On July 7 from noon to 5pm (rain date July 8), Hopkins Vineyard, a National Bicentennial Farm located at 25 Hopkins Rd in New Preston, Connecticut, will be celebrating 225 years of ownership by the same family.   The Hopkins family has organized the… Read more »

First Night: Colonial Dancing and Dining at Danbury Museum

Robert Rae

from the Danbury Museum and Historical Society THE DANBURY MUSEUM and Historical Society will host an evening of Colonial Dance and Dining as part of this year’s First Night 2012 celebrations. On Saturday, December 31, the historic Rider House at 43 Main Street will be… Read more »

First American Carillon Keeps the Bells Ringing in Danbury

Caressa Pittman

  Have you heard the sweet sound of the carillon?   Traditional church hymns and other recognizable tunes flood the downtown Danbury area every Sunday after service at The St. James Episcopal Church on West Street.   If the term carillon doesn’t ring a bell,… Read more »

Danbury Veterans Walkway Dedication This Sunday

Mary Teicholz

  A dedication ceremony for the Veterans Walkway of Honor at the Danbury War Memorial will be held on Sunday, July 14 at noon.  In case of inclement weather, the dedication will take place inside the Danbury War Memorial.   The Veterans Walkway of Honor is… Read more »

Connecticut Opens First Barns Trail in the U.S.

Amanda Bloom

  Connecticut is now home to America’s first historic barns trail.   The Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation (CTHP) has documented over 10,000 barns across the state to create seven regional trails: the Northwest Hills; Fairfield County and the Western Shore; New Haven and the… Read more »

Connecticut First in Flight?

Hugh McQuaid

  Connecticut’s House of Representatives is seeking to unseat North Carolina as the state with a claim to “First in Flight.”   The House amended a bill Thursday with language to change Connecticut’s statutes to recognize Gustave Whitehead each year on “Powered Flight Day,” rather… Read more »

City Firefighters, Police Honored in Danbury Museum Exhibit

Devin Cleary

  History is all about stories, and at the Danbury Museum & Historical Society in Connecticut [an advertiser on The Mercurial], the stories of the city’s local heroes are being displayed until November 5. Visit the Museum’s ‘Hometown Heroes’ exhibit to meet the police officers… Read more »

Charles Ives’ Birthplace Through His Niece’s Eyes

Robert Rae

by Maryjo Siergiej CHARLES IVES, a Danbury native modernist composer who became known as the “American Original”, was born on the city’s Main Street in 1874. Headway has been made by the Danbury Museum and Historical Society (DMHS) for the renovation and restoration of his… Read more »