VERY BRIEF HISTORY OF NEW MILFORD
1705 -- the New Milford Indians sold their reservation to John Mitchell of Woodbury.
1707 -- New Milford settled by John Noble and his eight year old daughter, of Westfield, MA. Other settlers were John Bostwick from Stratford, Conn. and John Noble, Jr. from Westfield, Massachusetts.
1712 -- New Milford incorporated (has the largest area of any town in the state.)
1713 -- John Noble, Sr. chosen Town Clerk. Chosen as Selectmen were Zachariah Ferriss, Samuel Brownson and Samuel Hitchcock
1715 -- first military company organized with Captain Stephen Noble in command.
1716 -- the first Congregational Church organized with Rev. Daniel Boardman as pastor.
1717 -- First gristmill built by John Griswold and William Gould at Lanesville.
1723-1724 -- James Hine of Milford became New Milford's first blacksmith.
1725 -- Ensign William Gaylord built a log house at Gaylordsville.
1736 -- most of the New Milford Indians join the Schaghticokes, west of the Housatonic River.
1737 -- the first bridge across the Housatonic River built (at the foot of Bennitt Street).
1742 -- only 30 Indians living in New Milford.
1743 -- Roger Sherman, signer of the Declaration of Independence, arrives from Newton, Massachusetts at the age of 22. Opens a cobbler’s shop at the corner of Main and Church Streets (where the Town Hall is now). He was later elected to the Assembly.
1751 -- Litchfield County organized.
1754 -- The second Congregational Meeting House was built.
1756 -- the population was 1,137 people.
1774 -- population of 2,776. New Milford provided 285 men.
1775-1782 -- the Revolutionary War.
The Schaghticoke tribe supplied more than 100 warriors to the Continental army. The Indians relayed messages from Stockbridge, MA to Long Island Sound by drumbeats and signal fires on Pickett Rock, Straits Mountain, and Candlewood Mountain. (WPA, 1938:454)
1780 -- General Washington passed through Gaylordsville.
1788 -- Nicholas Wanzer deeded land to the Quakers.
1796 -- Union Circulating Library established.
1820 -- William Taylor House at northeast corner of Main and Elm Streets.
1840s -- building of the Housatonic Railroad causes the town to become the center of country trade.
1845 -- J. K. Averill published the first newspaper in New Milford: The New Milford Republican.
1848 -- George McMahon raised the first tobacco in New Milford.
1856 -- Bridgewater set off from New Milford as a separate town.
pre-Civil War -- New Milford had a good brass band.
1861-1865 -- the American Civil War. As soon as the war started, the New Milford brass band was recruited in its entirety by the 4th Pennsylvania Cavalry. New Milford had 262 enlistments.
New Milford resident Corporal Charles N. Marsh received the Medal of Honor.
1875 -- Roger Sherman Hall erected.
1881 -- J. E. Bates and S. S. Green started the manufacture of hats by modern methods.
1884 -- electric light plant established
1893 -- Charles E. Griffin erected lime kilns at Boardman.
1898 -- a dam was built at Bull's Bridge and a canal constructed about a mile below.
1900 -- first automobile seen in town.
1902 -- New England Lime Company took over the lime kilns of Charles E. Griffin.
1915 -- The New Milford Historical Society incorporated.
1917 -- the Rocky River Power Company changed its name to The Connecticut Light & Power Company.
1928 -- United States Geographic Board gave the name "Lake Candlewood" to power project of The Connecticut Light & Power Company.
1938 -- Schaghticoke Mountain -- at its base are a few weather-beaten shacks occupied by the descendants of the Schaghticoke Indian Tribe. The reservation is of only 400 acres and there are only a dozen Indians remaining in 1938 (WPA, 1938:454)
1939 --The New Milford Community Park (6.8 acres), purchased from The Connecticut Light & Power Company.
1940 -- by vote of a Special Town Meting the Town Park was named "Lynn Deming Park".
1941 -- Town purchased 131 acres known as "Young's Field".
1941 -- Maggi Company started construction of new plant.
1941-1945 -- World War II.
1947 -- Maggi Company became Nestle Milk Products.
1950 -- population of 5,699.
1951 -- memorial to Admiral Harry Knapp dedicated; the bell came from his Flagship S. S. Pittsburgh. Erected by Ezra Woods Post No.31.
1965 -- Frank A. Harden left an estate in Lanesville as what became Harrybrooke Park.
1966 -- New Milford's lone casualty in the Vietnam War: Robert Erva Berr.
1968 -- Mr. and Mrs. Albert H. Baldwin gave the first gift of land for park purposes; it became the Baldwin Park in Northville.
1971 -- population up to 14,601.
For the complete timeline, see:
Chronological History of New Milford. Doris Addis Warwick and M. Joseph Lillis.
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