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Meriden, Connecticut

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Meriden, Connecticut
Meriden, CT - City Hall 02.jpg
City Hall, Meriden
Official seal of Meriden, Connecticut
Nickname: 
The Silver City[1]
Location in New Haven County, Connecticut
Coordinates: 41°32′12″N 72°47′41″W / 41.53667°N 72.79472°W / 41.53667; -72.79472Coordinates: 41°32′12″N 72°47′41″W / 41.53667°N 72.79472°W / 41.53667; -72.79472
Country United States
U.S. state Connecticut
CountyNew Haven
Metropolitan areaNew Haven
Incorporated (town)1806
Incorporated (city)1867
Consolidated1922
Government
 • TypeCouncil-manager
 • City ManagerTimothy Coon
 • City Leaders
List of CLs
  • Kevin Scarpati (U), Mayor
  • Michael Cardona (D), Dep. Mayor
  • Sonya Jelks (D), Majority Leader
  • Larue A. Graham (D), Dep. Maj. Leader
  • Bruce Fontanella (D), Dep. Maj. Leader
  • Dan Brunet (R), Minority Leader
  • Bob Williams, Jr. (W), Dep. Min. Leader
  • Krystle Blake (D)
  • Michael Carabetta (R)
  • Yvette Cortez (D)
  • Ray Ouellet (R)
  • Michael S. Rohde (D)
  • Nicole Tomassetti (D)
Area
 • Total24.16 sq mi (62.58 km2)
 • Land23.80 sq mi (61.64 km2)
 • Water0.36 sq mi (0.94 km2)
Elevation
177 ft (54 m)
Population
 • Total60,850
 • Density2,557/sq mi (987.2/km2)
Time zoneUTC−05:00 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−04:00 (Eastern)
ZIP Codes
06450, 06451
Area code(s)203/475
FIPS code09-46450
GNIS feature ID0208834
Websitewww.meridenct.gov

Meriden is a city in New Haven County, Connecticut, United States, located halfway between the regional cities of New Haven and Hartford. In 2020, the population of the city was 60,850.[3]

History

Solomon Goffe House
Solomon Goffe House
Meriden Britannia electro-gold and silverplating factory, 1881
Meriden Britannia electro-gold and silverplating factory, 1881

18th century

Meriden was originally a part of the neighboring town of Wallingford. It was granted a separate meetinghouse in 1727, became a town in 1806 with over 1,000 residents. Meriden was incorporated as a city in 1867, with just under 9,000 residents. It was once proposed as the Connecticut state capital.[4] It was named for the village of Meriden, West Midlands, England, near Birmingham.

The oldest house in town still standing, built by Solomon Goffe in 1711, became a museum in 1986. The building is the Solomon Goffe House.[4]

The grave of Winston Churchill's great-great-great maternal grandfather, Timothy Jerome, can be seen today at what is now called "Burying Ground 1720" (Google Maps: 41°31′22″N 72°47′16″W / 41.522877°N 72.787707°W / 41.522877; -72.787707) at the juncture of Dexter Avenue and Lydale Place. At the time the location was known as "Buckwheat Hill", and overlooked the salt-making estate for which Jerome had received a royal grant.[5] Timothy Jerome's son, Samuel, is the great-great grandfather of Jennie Jerome, Winston Churchill's mother.[6][7]

19th century to World War II

Meriden, c. 1914
Meriden, c. 1914

In the second half of the 1800s, Meriden became a manufacturing center of note, with several companies forming, or relocating to the city, involved in the production of mainly silver, lamps and metalware, glassware, guns, and musical instruments. A substantial number of design and technology patents were secured.[8]

Silver and cutlery

For silver, the numerous companies included the Meriden Britannia Company (a predecessor of the International Silver Company with corporate HQ in Meriden),[9] Meriden earned the nickname "Silver City", due to the large number of silver manufacturers, and the International Silver Co. continued production until the early 1980s. Along with the silver companies, other producers of cutlery included the Meriden Cutlery Co. and Miller Bros. Cutlery.[10]

In 1876, the Meriden Britannia Company made significant efforts at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, and won the First Place medal for plated wares. According to the Sotheby's auction house, "The publicity of the award and the impression the firm made on the fair's 8 million visitors was continued by the catalogues and other intensive marketing; by the end of the 1870s Meriden Britannia Co. was considered the largest silverware company in the world."[11] A key design attributed to launching the company and the town's international name was the Buffalo Hunt with a smaller edition in the White House collection, Washington, DC. For some time the original Buffalo Hunt sculpture went missing, and in a shocking report by Bailey Wright in 2018, it was learned that it was recently 'missing' actually in Meriden.[12][13]

Lamps and metalware

For lamps and metalware, the companies with national and international markets included the Edward Miller & Co / Miller Company (1844–stopped manufacturing lighting c. 1980),[14] the Charles Parker Company, Handel Company,[15] and the Bradley & Hubbard Manufacturing Company (1852–1940), which also was widely known for producing metal-based products like decorative tables and andirons.

Glassware

For glassware, the companies included the C.F. Monroe Company (1892–1916).[16] and the Meriden Flint Glass Company (1876–1892),[17][10]

Kitchen appliances and guns

Manning, Bowman & Co. (1849–1945) centered its production in Meriden, and into the early 20th century became a nationally known producer of small electrical appliances and chrome ware.[18] Meriden was also the site of the production of Parker Brothers (guns), widely-known and traded by firearms enthusiasts. From 1905 to 1918, the Meriden Firearms Co. manufactured small arms from 1905 to 1918. The stock was owned by Sears, Roebuck & Company.[4]

Musical instruments including player pianos

Internationally known companies Wilcox and White and the Aeolian Company were involved in the production of musical instruments north of the downtown area at Tremont and Cambridge Streets.[19] The Aeolian Company grew quickly forming production sites in other places and developed a music hall in New York. (The largest holder today of instruments and music rolls by the two companies is the Pianola Museum in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.) [20]

Graphic arts innovation

Meriden also was an important site for graphic arts innovation. In 1888, the Meriden Gravure Company (in Meriden 1888–1989) was founded by Charles Parker and James F. Allen, and continued a previous printing operation by Parker. The company developed an expertise in high quality image reproduction, which initially was driven by the needs of the silver industry.[21]

With the wealth of entrepreneurs during this time, several mansions and houses of note were built, particularly on Broad Street.[22][4]

Of political and historical note, on March 7, 1860, Abraham Lincoln spoke in Meriden seeking the Republican presidential nomination.[23]

Isaac C. Lewis mansion (1868). Since 1950, the building has been used for other purposes.[4] Since 2012, it has been a mosque.
Isaac C. Lewis mansion (1868). Since 1950, the building has been used for other purposes.[4] Since 2012, it has been a mosque.
Meriden City Hall (1907) with Civil War monument in the foreground. This building replaced two previous designs (1869–1889 and 1889–1904, the latter destroyed by fire).[4]
Meriden City Hall (1907) with Civil War monument in the foreground. This building replaced two previous designs (1869–1889 and 1889–1904, the latter destroyed by fire).[4]

For public places, Hubbard Park in the Hanging Hills was financed by Walter Hubbard (of the Bradley & Hubbard company). The design for the park was originally conceived by Hubbard in consultation with the Olmsted Brothers, sons of Frederick Law Olmsted, America's foremost landscape architect. In 1900, Castle Craig on a peak was dedicated in the park.[24] In 1903, the Curtis Memorial Library, across from Meriden's city hall, was opened.[4]

Hollywood connection (1937–1950)

From 1937 until 1947, the International Silver Company sponsored the Silver Theater, a national radio program broadcast via CBS in Hollywood. The radio program featured many Hollywood actors and actresses of the time like Jimmy Stewart and Rosalind Russell. Over 200 programs were produced.[25][26] In c. 1937–1945, several Hollywood stars, including Judy Garland, Ginger Rogers and Barbara Stanwyck, endorsed the company's 1847 Rogers Bros. silverware in print advertisements in LIFE magazine.[27][28]

After World War II, in 1949–1950, The Silver Theatre was brought to television and broadcast on CBS, also with the International Silver Company as the sponsor. Guest stars included Eva Gabor, Kim Hunter, and Burgess Meredith.[29]

Legacy of Meriden's grand manufacturing era

A few thousand designs from this manufacturing era from Meriden are in museums and historical societies across the United States and into Europe, Australia and New Zealand.[10] Design objects from this era from Meriden have also been included in over 200 national and international exhibitions and expositions since the 1850s.[10] The 1930s tea urn by Eliel Saarinen for the Wilcox Silver Plate Co. / International Silver Company, Meriden, is the one design exhibited most and most published in design books as an international Modern design icon.[30][31]

Some comparatively recent examples of Meriden designs in exhibitions include In pursuit of Beauty: Americans and the Aesthetic Movement at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (1986–1987),[32] and more recently, Modernism in American Silver: 20th century design (2005–2006) in Dallas, Miami Beach, and Washington, DC, which highlighted downtown Meriden and the area's role as an important center of Modernist silver production.[33] In 19th century Modern (2011–2012) in Brooklyn, designs by the International Silver Company and the Napier Company, another Meriden manufacturer, were exhibited.[34] In November 2016-November 2017, the city's iconic Napier penguin cocktail shaker was in an exhibition at the Dallas Museum of Art; the Napier penguin was the lead image of the show.[35]

In summer 2017 alone, historical Meriden area design was exhibited in museum shows in at least Dallas, Newark, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Museum in New York, the Gemeentemuseum in The Hague, The Netherlands, and the KunstHalle in Berlin, Germany.[30]

With this level of attention, some special design objects from the era have become sought-after collectors items also at auction, sometimes due to their association with the commission or commissioner, or the status of the design, or being in the sought-after Modernism style. For example, a painted glass and metal table lamp by Bradley and Hubbard, (c. 1920) sold for US$14,950, doubling its estimate, at Christie's auction house in New York in 1999.[36] Later, a 14-inch, International Silver Company cocktail shaker (c. 1927) sold for US$21,600 tripling its estimate, at Christie's in New York in 2005.[37] A Parker gun made for a Russian czar before World War I, but never delivered, was reported to have been sold for US$287,500 in 2007.[4] In 2008, a rare Handel lamp sold for US$85,000.[38] On March 5–6, 2014 at Sotheby's in London, "Al Capone's cocktail shaker" made by the Meriden International Sterling Company (c. 1932) achieved over 33 times its estimate with a sale price of GBP50,000 (US$83,250 on the day).[39] Lastly, in 2014, at Sotheby's New York, a rare Paul Lobel-designed coffee service (c. 1934–1935) produced by the Wilcox Silver Plate Co. / International Silver Company sold for US$377,000.[40]

WWII–1970s

In 1939, Edwin Howard Armstrong, a network radio pioneer who invented FM radio, used West Peak in 1939 for the location of one of the first FM radio broadcasts. His original 70-foot-tall (21 m) radio mast still stands on the peak.[41] Currently West Peak is home to six FM broadcast stations, including WNPR,[42] WWYZ, WKSS, WDRC-FM, WMRQ-FM[43] and WHCN.

During World War II, factories in Meriden worked three shifts (24 hours/day). On March 8, 1944, the War Manpower Commission gave Meriden the designation as "National Ideal War Community", and Jimmy Durante and Glenn Miller entertained those at the ceremony.[4]

In addition to manufacturers that continued operations after World War II, starting in the later 1940s, the Miller Company, Burton Tremaine, Sr. and Emily Hall Tremaine firmly put Meriden on the international, 20th century art/design map. In December 1947, Meriden became known once again as a site of design innovation, now with Modern art, via the Miller Company Collection of Abstract Art and the organization of a Painting toward architecture exhibition which opened at Hartford's Wadsworth Atheneum[44] and later travelled to venues in 27 venues across the United States (1947–52). Substantial national media coverage reported on the exhibition. Painting toward architecture is considered one of the important art-design-architecture crossover exhibitions of the 20th century, tabling European influences for usage in the Post-World War II United States.[45] In the 1950s, the Miller Company Collection of Abstract Art was privatized to "Mr & Mrs Burton Tremaine, Meriden, CT" and numerous artworks were lent to hundreds of exhibitions nationally and internationally into the 1970s with this designation.[46]

Black-and-white Modernist facade of the Miller Company addition, designed by Philip Johnson, built in 1965.
Black-and-white Modernist facade of the Miller Company addition, designed by Philip Johnson, built in 1965.

In 1965, the Miller Company addition on Center Street was completed. The black-and-white Modernist facade was designed by influential American architect Philip Johnson.[47][48]

On April 27, 1976, Jimmy Carter campaigned at city hall and the Latin American Society for the nomination of the Democratic Party for President of the United States.[49]

1980s–present

In 1981, the Ku Klux Klan was present in Meriden, holding various rallies in the first half of the year. At these rallies, Connecticut State Police would protect the KKK from anti-KKK protestors.[50] At a March 21, 1981 rally, where the KKK was showing support for a police officer who killed a Black person, protestors threw rocks at the KKK. Two protesters were injured.[51]

In 1987, the Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation was founded by the noted art collector that partly worked in Meriden, before her passing, with three focus areas: learning disabilities, the arts, and the environment.[52] The offices were located in downtown Meriden.[53] In c. 2010, the foundation offices were relocated to New Haven, near Yale University.[54]

Meriden was a location chosen for the filming of the 1989 film Jacknife directed by David Jones starring Robert De Niro, Ed Harris and Kathy Baker. De Niro played a Vietnam War veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder adjusting to a return to American life. The film was adapted by the play, Strange Snow by Stephen Metcalfe, a native from the adjacent town of Cheshire, Connecticut. A number of Meriden locations can be seen in the film, including a historic house on Linsley Avenue, as well as film locations in the greater region.[55]

The Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist have their mother house in Meriden, as do the Franciscan Brothers of the Eucharist.

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Meriden, West Midlands

Meriden, West Midlands

Meriden is a village and civil parish in the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull, West Midlands, England. Historically, it is part of Warwickshire and lies between the cities of Birmingham and Coventry. It is located close to the Warwickshire border within a green belt of the countryside known as the Meriden Gap and is in the ecclesiastical parish of the Diocese of Coventry. The village is 6.75 miles east-northeast of Solihull, 6.5 miles west-northwest of Coventry and 4.5 miles east-southeast of Birmingham Airport. Birmingham city centre is 12.5 miles east-northeast of the village. Known as "Alspath" in the Domesday Book, it was historically thought to be the geographical centre of England until the early 2000s, though after an analysis by the Ordnance Survey this was proved to be incorrect.

Meriden Britannia Company

Meriden Britannia Company

The Meriden Britannia Company was formed in 1852 in Meriden, Connecticut, as a manufacturing company focused on producing wares in britannia metal. It became, for a time, the largest silverware company in the world.

International Silver Company

International Silver Company

The International Silver Company , also known as the ISC, was formed in Meriden, Connecticut as a corporation banding together many existing silver companies in the immediate area and beyond.

Centennial Exposition

Centennial Exposition

The Centennial International Exhibition of 1876, the first official World's Fair to be held in the United States, was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from May 10 to November 10, 1876, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia. Officially named the International Exhibition of Arts, Manufactures, and Products of the Soil and Mine, it was held in Fairmount Park along the Schuylkill River on fairgrounds designed by Herman J. Schwarzmann. Nearly 10 million visitors attended the exposition, and 37 countries participated in it.

Edward Miller & Co

Edward Miller & Co

Edward Miller & Co. (1844-1924) was formed in Meriden, Connecticut, and is primarily known as a historical manufacturer of lamps. The company also made brass kettles and oil heaters. In 1866, the corporation was formed with capital of USD$200,000. Its earlier beginning included being started by Horatio Howard. The following year the business was sold to Edward Miller.

Charles Parker Company

Charles Parker Company

The Charles Parker Company was formed in Meriden, Connecticut by Charles Parker, and over the years manufactured products including metalware, Art Brass, hardware, lamps, spectacles, and piano stools. Also related to the company were others founded by Charles Parker: including Parker Brothers, Meriden Curtain Fixture Co., and Parker & Whipple Co. clock manufacturers.

Handel Company

Handel Company

The Eydam and Handel Company, or Adolph Eydam and Philip Handel Company, was formed in 1885, until partnership broke up in 1892 when Eydam moved to rival company of C. F. Monroe. It was formed in Meriden, Connecticut, and over the years produced lamps and glass designs. The company was incorporated in 1903. As of c. 1911, P. J. Handel was president and treasurer of the business. In Meriden Illustrated, "[The company has] obtained [a] national reputation for the artistic and the high quality of their product. A number of patents are controlled which makes their business a very successful one. There is a force of 125 people skilled in the various branches and steadily engaged." Also at this time, the Handel Company maintained a showroom in New York City at the corner of West Broadway and Murray St. with dedicated sales agents for the entire United States. The production location was in Meriden on East Main Street, just east of Broad Street.

Bradley & Hubbard Manufacturing Company

Bradley & Hubbard Manufacturing Company

The Bradley & Hubbard Manufacturing Company (1852–1940) was formed in Meriden, Connecticut, and over the years produced Art Brass tables, call bells, candlestick holders, clocks, match safes, lamps, architectural grilles, railings, etc. Overall the company patented 238 designs and mechanical devices. "By the 1890s, the Bradley and Hubbard name was synonymous with high quality and artistic merit," said Richard E. Stamm for the Smithsonian Institution, which has an extensive collection of Bradley and Hubbard manufactured design objects in its collection.

Manning, Bowman & Co.

Manning, Bowman & Co.

The Manning, Bowman & Co. (1849-1945) was formed in Meriden, Connecticut, and over the years produced granite iron and pearl agate ware, electro-silver and nickel-plated ware, britannia and planished goods.

Meriden Firearms Co.

Meriden Firearms Co.

The Meriden Firearms Company of Meriden, Connecticut, USA manufactured small arms from 1905 to 1918. Meriden manufactured 20 varieties of hammer and hammerless revolvers with an output of 100 handguns a day in 1906. In addition to revolvers the company manufactured shotguns and rifles.

Aeolian Company

Aeolian Company

The Aeolian Company was a musical-instrument making firm whose products included player organs, pianos, sheet music, records and phonographs. Founded in 1887, it was at one point the world's largest such firm. During the mid 20th century, it surpassed Kimball to become the largest supplier of pianos in the United States, having contracts with Steinway & Sons due to its Duo-Art system of player pianos. It went out of business in 1985.

Hubbard Park (Meriden, Connecticut)

Hubbard Park (Meriden, Connecticut)

Hubbard Park, located in the Hanging Hills of Connecticut, is a wooded, mountainous park located just outside the city center of Meriden, Connecticut. It comprises approximately 1,800 acres (7.3 km2) of carefully kept woodlands, streams, dramatic cliff faces, flower gardens, and the James Barry bandshell and picnic spots, as well as its showpiece, Mirror Lake. The park is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Geography

The Hanging Hills and Hubbard Park, and Meriden below (2003)
The Hanging Hills and Hubbard Park, and Meriden below (2003)
The Quinnipiac River as it winds through the Quinnipiac River Gorge in South Meriden
The Quinnipiac River as it winds through the Quinnipiac River Gorge in South Meriden

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 24.1 square miles (62.5 km2), of which 23.8 square miles (61.5 km2) is land and 0.4 square miles (1.0 km2), or 1.66%, is water.

Meriden is a showcase for a number of prominent peaks of the Metacomet Ridge, a mountainous trap rock ridgeline that stretches from Long Island Sound to nearly the Vermont border. Notable peaks in Meriden include the Hanging Hills (West Peak, East Peak, South Mountain, and Cathole Mountain); Lamentation Mountain, Chauncey Peak, and Besek Mountain. Castle Craig, a city landmark for over a century, was constructed among the Hanging Hills in Hubbard Park.

The Quinnipiac River courses through the southwest quadrant of the city, known to area residents as "South Meriden", where it meanders through a gorge lined with several exposed sandstone and brownstone cliffs. Harbor Brook (originally named Pilgrim Harbor Brook) cuts through the town from the northeast to the southwest before emptying into Hanover Pond, an impoundment on the Quinnipiac River in South Meriden.

Principal communities

  • Meriden Center
  • South Meriden

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Quinnipiac River

Quinnipiac River

The Quinnipiac River is a 45.5-mile (73.2 km) long river in the New England region of the United States, located entirely in the state of Connecticut.

Metacomet Ridge

Metacomet Ridge

The Metacomet Ridge, Metacomet Ridge Mountains, or Metacomet Range of southern New England is a narrow and steep fault-block mountain ridge known for its extensive cliff faces, scenic vistas, microclimate ecosystems, and rare or endangered plants. The ridge is an important recreation resource located within 10 miles (16 km) of more than 1.5 million people, offering four long-distance hiking trails and over a dozen parks and recreation areas, including several historic sites. It has been the focus of ongoing conservation efforts because of its natural, historic, and recreational value, involving municipal, state, and national agencies and nearly two dozen non-profit organizations.

Long Island Sound

Long Island Sound

Long Island Sound is a marine sound and tidal estuary of the Atlantic Ocean. It lies predominantly between the U.S. state of Connecticut to the north and Long Island in New York to the south. From west to east, the sound stretches 110 mi (180 km) from the East River in New York City, along the North Shore of Long Island, to Block Island Sound. A mix of freshwater from tributaries and saltwater from the ocean, Long Island Sound is 21 mi (34 km) at its widest point and varies in depth from 65 to 230 feet.

Hanging Hills

Hanging Hills

The Hanging Hills of south central Connecticut, United States are a range of mountainous trap rock ridges overlooking the city of Meriden and the Quinnipiac River Valley 900 feet (274 m) below. They are a sub-range of the narrow, linear Metacomet Ridge that extends from Long Island Sound near New Haven, Connecticut, north through the Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts to the Vermont border. A popular outdoor recreation resource, the range is known for its microclimate ecosystems, rare plant communities, and expansive views from cliffs that rise abruptly over 700 feet (213 m) above the surrounding landscape. The Hanging Hills encompass the 1,800-acre (7.3 km2) Hubbard Park, designed with the help of landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted. The 51 mile (80k) Metacomet Trail traverses the range.

East Peak (New Haven County, Connecticut)

East Peak (New Haven County, Connecticut)

East Peak, 976 feet (297 m), is a prominent basalt traprock mountain in the Hanging Hills of Meriden, Connecticut. Rugged and scenic, the peak rises steeply above the city of Meriden 600 feet (183 m) below and is characterized by its vertical cliffs and sweeping views of southern Connecticut and Long Island Sound. A small stone observation tower known as Castle Craig stands on the summit.

Cathole Mountain

Cathole Mountain

Cathole Mountain, 515 feet (157 m), is the lowest peak in the trap rock Hanging Hills of Meriden, Connecticut. The rugged southern ledges of the mountain rise steeply 150 feet (46 m) above the city of Meriden. The mountain is separated from South Mountain by the narrow, rocky Cathole Pass through which Connecticut Route 71 ascends.

Lamentation Mountain

Lamentation Mountain

Lamentation Mountain, or Mount Lamentation, 720 feet (220 m), is a traprock mountain located 2.5 miles (4.0 km) north of Meriden, Connecticut. It is part of the narrow, linear Metacomet Ridge that extends from Long Island Sound near New Haven, Connecticut, north through the Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts to the Vermont border. Lamentation Mountain is known for its scenic vistas, extensive cliff faces, unique microclimate ecosystems, and rare plant communities. It rises steeply 550 feet (170 m) above the city of Meriden to the south with west-facing cliffs of 200 feet (61 m) or more. The cliff line, described by the Connecticut Forest and Park Association as "perhaps the most scenic traprock ridge walk in the state" is a prominent landscape feature visible for miles. The mountain is traversed by the 50-mile (80 km) Mattabesett Trail.

Chauncey Peak

Chauncey Peak

Chauncey Peak, 688 feet (210 m), is a traprock mountain located 2 miles (3 km) northeast of the center of Meriden, Connecticut. It is part of the narrow, linear Metacomet Ridge that extends from Long Island Sound near New Haven, Connecticut, north through the Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts to the Vermont border. Chauncey Peak is known for its scenic vistas, vertical cliff faces overlooking Crescent Lake, unique microclimate ecosystems, and rare plant communities. It rises steeply 400 feet (120 m) above the city of Meriden to the south with west-facing cliffs that plunge into Crescent Lake 300 feet (91 m) below. The mountain is traversed by the 50-mile (80 km) Mattabesett Trail.

Besek Mountain

Besek Mountain

Besek Mountain also known as Black Mountain, est. 840 feet (260 m), is a traprock mountain ridge located 4.75 miles (7.6 km) southeast of Meriden, Connecticut. It is part of the narrow, linear Metacomet Ridge that extends from Long Island Sound near New Haven, Connecticut, north through the Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts to the Vermont border. Besek Mountain is known for its 3-mile (4.8 km) long line of open cliffs, unique microclimate ecosystems, and rare plant communities. The mountain is traversed by the 51-mile (82 km) Mattabesett Trail, and is home to the Powder Ridge Ski Area.

Castle Craig

Castle Craig

Castle Craig, located on East Peak in the Hanging Hills, is constructed of trap rock and is 32 feet (10 m) in height and has a base 58 feet (18 m) in circumference. A metal interior stairway is used to ascend the observation deck on top. It stands 976 feet (297 m) above sea level and provides an expansive view of the greater Meriden, Connecticut area.

Hubbard Park (Meriden, Connecticut)

Hubbard Park (Meriden, Connecticut)

Hubbard Park, located in the Hanging Hills of Connecticut, is a wooded, mountainous park located just outside the city center of Meriden, Connecticut. It comprises approximately 1,800 acres (7.3 km2) of carefully kept woodlands, streams, dramatic cliff faces, flower gardens, and the James Barry bandshell and picnic spots, as well as its showpiece, Mirror Lake. The park is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Brownstone

Brownstone

Brownstone is a brown Triassic–Jurassic sandstone that was historically a popular building material. The term is also used in the United States and Canada to refer to a townhouse clad in this or any other aesthetically similar material.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
18201,309
18708,893
188015,54074.7%
189021,65239.3%
190024,29612.2%
191027,26512.2%
192029,8679.5%
193038,48128.8%
194039,4942.6%
195044,08811.6%
196051,85017.6%
197055,9597.9%
198057,1182.1%
199059,4794.1%
200058,244−2.1%
201060,8684.5%
202060,8500.0%
U.S. Decennial Census[56]

As of the 2010 census, there were 60,868 people in Meriden, with a population density of 2558 persons per square mile. There were 23,922 households (2009–2013). The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 3.10. Husband-wife households account for 41% of all households. The population under 5 years (2010) was 6.7%, under 18 years (2010) was 23.9%, and 65 years and over was 12.9%. The female population was 51.6% compared to the male population at 48.4% (2010).[57]

The racial makeup of the city in 2010 was 73.5% White, 9.7% Black or African American, 0.5% Native American, 2.1% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 10.7% from other races, and 3.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 28.9% of the population. In 2009–2013, 9.7% of the population was foreign-born.[58][57]

For 2009–2013, the median household income was $52,590. The per capita income for the city was $26,941. The median value of owner-occupied housing units was $188,400. The home ownership rate was 61.8%. The high school graduation or higher rate was 83.6% (age 25+) and the bachelor's degree or higher rate was 19.1% (age 25+). 14.4% of people were below the poverty line.[57]

Political affiliation

Voter registration and party enrollment as of October 27, 2020[59]
Party Active voters Inactive voters Total voters Percentage
Democratic 11,160 1,572 12,732 34.34%
Republican 4,946 501 5,447 14.69%
Unaffiliated 15,332 3,033 18,365 49.54%
Minor parties 478 50 528 1.42%
Total 31,916 5,156 37,072 100%

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1820 United States census

1820 United States census

The United States census of 1820 was the fourth census conducted in the United States. It was conducted on August 7, 1820. The 1820 census included six new states: Louisiana, Indiana, Mississippi, Illinois, Alabama and Maine. There has been a district wide loss of 1820 census records for Arkansas Territory, Missouri Territory and New Jersey.

1870 United States census

1870 United States census

The United States census of 1870 was the ninth United States census. It was conducted by the Census Bureau from June 1, 1870, to August 23, 1871. The 1870 census was the first census to provide detailed information on the African American population, only five years after the culmination of the Civil War when slaves were granted freedom. The total population was 38,925,598 with a resident population of 38,558,371 individuals, a 22.6% increase from 1860.

1880 United States census

1880 United States census

The United States census of 1880 conducted by the Census Bureau during June 1880 was the tenth United States census. It was the first time that women were permitted to be enumerators. The Superintendent of the Census was Francis Amasa Walker. This was the first census in which a city—New York City—recorded a population of over one million.

1890 United States census

1890 United States census

The United States census of 1890 was taken beginning June 2, 1890, but most of the 1890 census materials were destroyed in 1921 when a building caught fire and in the subsequent disposal of the remaining damaged records. It determined the resident population of the United States to be 62,979,766—an increase of 25.5 percent over the 50,189,209 persons enumerated during the 1880 census. The data reported that the distribution of the population had resulted in the disappearance of the American frontier.

1900 United States census

1900 United States census

The United States census of 1900, conducted by the Census Office on June 1, 1900, determined the resident population of the United States to be 76,212,168, an increase of 21.01% from the 62,979,766 persons enumerated during the 1890 census.

1910 United States census

1910 United States census

The United States census of 1910, conducted by the Census Bureau on April 15, 1910, determined the resident population of the United States to be 92,228,496, an increase of 21 percent over the 76,212,168 persons enumerated during the 1900 census. The 1910 census switched from a portrait page orientation to a landscape orientation.

1920 United States census

1920 United States census

The United States census of 1920, conducted by the Census Bureau during one month from January 5, 1920, determined the resident population of the United States to be 106,021,537, an increase of 15.0 percent over the 92,228,496 persons enumerated during the 1910 census.

1930 United States census

1930 United States census

The United States census of 1930, conducted by the Census Bureau one month from April 1, 1930, determined the resident population of the United States to be 122,775,046, an increase of 13.7 percent over the 106,021,537 persons enumerated during the 1920 census.

1940 United States census

1940 United States census

The United States census of 1940, conducted by the Census Bureau, determined the resident population of the United States to be 132,164,569, an increase of 7.3 percent over the 1930 population of 122,775,046 people. The census date of record was April 1, 1940.

1950 United States census

1950 United States census

The United States census of 1950, conducted by the Census Bureau, determined the resident population of the United States to be 150,697,361, an increase of 14.5 percent over the 131,669,275 persons enumerated during the 1940 census.

1960 United States census

1960 United States census

The United States census of 1960, conducted by the Census Bureau, determined the resident population of the United States to be 179,323,175, an increase of 18.5 percent over the 151,325,798 persons enumerated during the 1950 census. This was the first census in which all states recorded a population of over 200,000. This census's data determined the electoral votes for the 1964 and 1968 presidential elections. This was also the last census in which New York was the most populous state.

1970 United States census

1970 United States census

The United States census of 1970, conducted by the Census Bureau, determined the resident population of the United States to be 203,392,031, an increase of 13.4 percent over the 179,323,175 persons enumerated during the 1960 census.

Government

Until 1980, the city had a Mayor-Council ("strong mayor") structure. The last full-time strong mayor was Walter Evilia, a Republican and a former State Representative. Dana Miller was appointed the first city manager.[60][61] The City Charter was last amended in 1994, giving the then largely ceremonial position of mayor more influence over city governance, including appointments to all boards and commissions and other positions within the appointing power of the City Council,[62] as well as line-item veto over city budgets.[63]

The current mayor, Kevin Scarpati, became the youngest popularly-elected mayor in the city's history, winning the 2015 election race by 78 votes against mayor Manny Santos, who had been the first Republican elected as mayor in nearly 30 years (the last being Walter Evilia). In 2018, Manny Santos ran an unsuccessful election for U.S. Congress in the 5th Congressional House District.[64]

The city gained notoriety in government and political circles when in 2014, at the urging of newly elected mayor, Manny Santos, plaintiffs sued to remove appointees of boards and commissions and corporation counsel.[65] Ultimately, the ruling by the state Supreme Court to vacate the appointments followed that of a lower court order. The appointments had been made by former mayor, Michael Rohde. In its ruling, the court noted, per the city charter, that the city council can appoint a corporation counsel, but only on the recommendation of the mayor, who at the time was Manny Santos.[66]

Arts and culture

Points of interest

Looking west from city hall to the Downtown Area, Meriden, CT. The Civil War monument (1873) is to the right, and the Hanging Hills are in the distance to the right. Photo in 2007.
Looking west from city hall to the Downtown Area, Meriden, CT. The Civil War monument (1873) is to the right, and the Hanging Hills are in the distance to the right. Photo in 2007.
The Curtis Memorial Library building (2007)
The Curtis Memorial Library building (2007)
Red Bridge, one of no more than fifteen lenticular pony truss bridges remaining in Connecticut.[67]
Red Bridge, one of no more than fifteen lenticular pony truss bridges remaining in Connecticut.[67]

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Hanging Hills

Hanging Hills

The Hanging Hills of south central Connecticut, United States are a range of mountainous trap rock ridges overlooking the city of Meriden and the Quinnipiac River Valley 900 feet (274 m) below. They are a sub-range of the narrow, linear Metacomet Ridge that extends from Long Island Sound near New Haven, Connecticut, north through the Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts to the Vermont border. A popular outdoor recreation resource, the range is known for its microclimate ecosystems, rare plant communities, and expansive views from cliffs that rise abruptly over 700 feet (213 m) above the surrounding landscape. The Hanging Hills encompass the 1,800-acre (7.3 km2) Hubbard Park, designed with the help of landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted. The 51 mile (80k) Metacomet Trail traverses the range.

Curtis Memorial Library

Curtis Memorial Library

The Curtis Memorial Library, now the Augusta Curtis Cultural Center, is a historic former library building at 175 East Main Street in Meriden, Connecticut. It was designed by New Haven architect Richard Williams in the Classical Revival style, and was completed in 1903. The building was a gift to the city from Augusta Munson Curtis in honor of her husband George, who was one of the city's leading businessmen and onetime mayor. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1981. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1981.

Red Bridge (Meriden, Connecticut)

Red Bridge (Meriden, Connecticut)

The Red Bridge is a historic bridge spanning the Quinnipiac River near Oregon Road in Meriden, Connecticut. It was built in 1891 by the Berlin Iron Bridge Company, and is one of a small number of surviving lenticular truss bridges in the state, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993. The bridge is open to pedestrian traffic only.

National Register of Historic Places

National Register of Historic Places

The National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) is the United States federal government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures and objects deemed worthy of preservation for their historical significance or "great artistic value". A property listed in the National Register, or located within a National Register Historic District, may qualify for tax incentives derived from the total value of expenses incurred in preserving the property.

McKim, Mead & White

McKim, Mead & White

McKim, Mead & White was an American architectural firm that came to define architectural practice, urbanism, and the ideals of the American Renaissance in fin de siècle New York. The firm's founding partners Charles Follen McKim (1847–1909), William Rutherford Mead (1846–1928) and Stanford White (1853–1906) were giants in the architecture of their time, and remain important as innovators and leaders in the development of modern architecture worldwide. They formed a school of classically trained, technologically skilled designers who practiced well into the mid-twentieth century. According to Robert A. M. Stern, only Frank Lloyd Wright was more important to the identity and character of modern American architecture.

Hubbard Park (Meriden, Connecticut)

Hubbard Park (Meriden, Connecticut)

Hubbard Park, located in the Hanging Hills of Connecticut, is a wooded, mountainous park located just outside the city center of Meriden, Connecticut. It comprises approximately 1,800 acres (7.3 km2) of carefully kept woodlands, streams, dramatic cliff faces, flower gardens, and the James Barry bandshell and picnic spots, as well as its showpiece, Mirror Lake. The park is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Castle Craig

Castle Craig

Castle Craig, located on East Peak in the Hanging Hills, is constructed of trap rock and is 32 feet (10 m) in height and has a base 58 feet (18 m) in circumference. A metal interior stairway is used to ascend the observation deck on top. It stands 976 feet (297 m) above sea level and provides an expansive view of the greater Meriden, Connecticut area.

United States Post Office–Meriden Main

United States Post Office–Meriden Main

The former U.S. Post Office-Meriden Main, also known as Meriden Main Post Office, is located at 89 Colony Street in Meriden, Connecticut. Built in 1907 and extended in 1932, it is a striking local example of Beaux Arts architecture. The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1986. It no longer houses the city's main post office, which is at 190 Center Street.

James Knox Taylor

James Knox Taylor

James Knox Taylor was Supervising Architect of the United States Department of the Treasury from 1897 to 1912. His name is listed ex officio as supervising architect of hundreds of federal buildings built throughout the United States during the period.

Philip Johnson

Philip Johnson

Philip Cortelyou Johnson was an American architect best known for his works of modern and postmodern architecture. Among his best-known designs are his modernist Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut; the postmodern 550 Madison Avenue in New York, designed for AT&T; 190 South La Salle Street in Chicago; the Sculpture Garden of the Museum of Modern Art; and the Pre-Columbian Pavilion at Dumbarton Oaks. In his obituary in 2005, The New York Times wrote that his works "were widely considered among the architectural masterpieces of the 20th century."

Moses Andrews House

Moses Andrews House

The Moses Andrews House is a historic house museum at 424 West Main Street in Meriden, Connecticut. Built about 1760, it is one of a small number of surviving 18th-century houses in the city. It has been operated by the local historical society as a museum property since about 1940. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.

Metropolitan Museum of Art

Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art of New York City, colloquially "the Met", is the largest art museum in the Americas. Its permanent collection contains over two million works, divided among 17 curatorial departments. The main building at 1000 Fifth Avenue, along the Museum Mile on the eastern edge of Central Park on Manhattan's Upper East Side, is by area one of the world's largest art museums. The first portion of the approximately 2-million-square-foot (190,000 m2) building was built in 1880. A much smaller second location, The Cloisters at Fort Tryon Park in Upper Manhattan, contains an extensive collection of art, architecture, and artifacts from medieval Europe.

Education

Board of Education building, formerly Meriden High School
Board of Education building, formerly Meriden High School

The Meriden Board of Education operates several public schools:[79]

Public elementary schools (K–5)

  • John Barry
  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Nathan Hale
  • Hanover
  • Thomas Hooker
  • Casimir Pulaski
  • Israel Putnam
  • Roger Sherman

Middle schools (6–8)

  • Lincoln (public)
  • Washington (public)
  • Edison (public)

High schools

Private schools

  • Our Lady of Mount Carmel.[81]

Other schools in the area include the Catholic high schools Xavier High School (boys) and Mercy High School (girls) in neighboring Middletown. The private schools Cheshire Academy and Choate Rosemary Hall are in adjacent Cheshire and Wallingford respectively.

The former St. Stanislaus Catholic K–8 School, established in 1897 by people who immigrated from Poland,[82] closed in 2015.[83]

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O.H. Platt High School

O.H. Platt High School

Orville H. Platt High School, commonly called Platt High School, is a public high school located in Meriden, Connecticut.

Xavier High School (Connecticut)

Xavier High School (Connecticut)

Xavier High School is an all-boys college preparatory Catholic high school in Middletown, Connecticut, United States. It is run by the Xaverian Brothers. Teenage boys from over 65 towns surrounding and including Middletown attend Xavier; despite the fact that students commute from a very broad area all students, their parents, faculty, and staff, regardless of how far away they live from the school, are referred to by Xavier officials as "The Xavier Community".

Mercy High School (Connecticut)

Mercy High School (Connecticut)

Mercy High School is a private, Roman Catholic, all-girls high school in Middletown, Connecticut located within the Roman Catholic Diocese of Norwich.

Cheshire Academy

Cheshire Academy

Cheshire Academy is a selective, co-educational college preparatory school located in Cheshire, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1794 as the Episcopal Academy of Connecticut, it is currently the eleventh oldest boarding school in the United States. In 1917, the school was renamed The Roxbury School, and trained young men exclusively for the purpose of attending nearby Yale University. Later known as Cheshire Academy, the school was the first private academic institution to accept international students dating back to the 1850s, and it is currently the only independent school to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme in the state of Connecticut.

Choate Rosemary Hall

Choate Rosemary Hall

Choate Rosemary Hall is a private, co-educational, college-preparatory boarding school in Wallingford, Connecticut, United States. Choate is currently ranked as the second best boarding school and third best private high school in America. Founded in 1890, it took its present name and began a co-educational system with the 1971 merger of The Choate School for boys and Rosemary Hall for girls. It is part of the Eight Schools Association and the Ten Schools Admissions Organization. Its alumni include many members of the American political elite.

Polish Americans

Polish Americans

Polish Americans are Americans who either have total or partial Polish ancestry, or are citizens of the Republic of Poland. There are an estimated 9.15 million self-identified Polish Americans, representing about 2.83% of the U.S. population. Polish Americans are the second-largest Central European ethnic group after German Americans, and the eighth largest ethnic group overall in the United States.

Infrastructure

Transportation

Highway

The city of Meriden is located on Interstate 91, which provides access to Hartford, Springfield, and New Haven. Interstate 691 provides access to Interstate 84 and connects to points west like Waterbury. The Wilbur Cross Parkway (Connecticut Route 15) travels in a southwestern direction connecting to towns and cities like Wallingford, New Haven, and towards New York City. The parkway becomes the Berlin Turnpike (also Connecticut Route 15) on the northern end of Meriden. U.S. Route 5 passes through the city as North and South Broad Street.

Photo of train at Meriden's train station in 2013
Photo of train at Meriden's train station in 2013

Railroad

The city of Meriden is connected to the cities of New Haven, Hartford, and Springfield, Massachusetts, by regional rail service provided by Amtrak, which runs north-to-south through the center of the city. This rail line opened in 1839, and operated for many years under the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad. The city was also served by the Middletown, Meriden and Waterbury Railroad, which provided both freight and passenger service to Waterbury and Middletown from 1888 until its abandonment in 1924. Currently, Amtrak runs 16 trains (from among its Hartford Line, Northeast Regional, Valley Eagle and Vermonter services) through the Meriden station on most weekdays.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation added a commuter service called the Hartford Line in collaboration with Amtrak and the federal government that runs between New Haven and Springfield, Massachusetts. Service began in May 2018.[85]

In the Quinnipiac River Gorge in South Meriden, 1.3 miles (2.1 km) of the original MW&CR Railroad right of way has been converted into a recreational rail trail as the Meriden Linear Trail. Open to the public in December 2006, the formal dedication occurred on November 3, 2007.[86]

Bus

Beginning in 1784, Meriden had a stop on the New Haven-Hartford Stage Coach [87] on Route 5 near the intersection of East Main Street. Years later, the same stop served as the bus stop for Greyhound and Peter Pan buses. Meriden had four daily departures to/from Hartford/Boston, and four daily departures to/from New Haven/New York daily from the 1970s through 2007, when intercity bus service ceased serving Meriden.

Meriden is linked to the Connecticut Transit System, Connecticut's extensive public transit bus network. Three bus lines loop throughout the city of Meriden once per hour. The "B" bus route departs the Meriden railroad station for the southern terminus of Kohls Plaza, connecting for New Haven; the "A" bus route departs the rail station for the northern terminus of Meriden Square with connections to New Britain and Hartford; and the east/west "C" bus travels along East Main and West Main Streets, with a handful of departures to Middletown and Waterbury.

Airports

Meriden Markham Municipal Airport is the city-owned airport, located 3 miles (4.8 km) south of the city center on the border of South Meriden and Yalesville, and serves private and charter planes. Bradley International Airport (BDL) in Windsor Locks and Tweed New Haven Airport (HVN) in East Haven are the closest commercial airports to Meriden.

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Interstate 91

Interstate 91

Interstate 91 (I-91) is an Interstate Highway in the New England region of the United States. It provides the primary north–south thoroughfare in the western part of the region. The Interstate generally follows the course of the Connecticut River. Its southern terminus is in New Haven, Connecticut, at I-95. The northern terminus is in the village of Derby Line, Vermont, at the Canadian border. Past the Derby Line–Rock Island Border Crossing, the road continues as Quebec Autoroute 55. I-91 is the longest of three Interstate highways whose entire route is located within the New England states and is also the only primary (two-digit) Interstate Highway in New England to intersect all five of the other highways that run through the region. The largest cities along its route are New Haven, Connecticut; Hartford, Connecticut; Springfield, Massachusetts; Northampton, Massachusetts; Greenfield, Massachusetts; Brattleboro, Vermont; White River Junction, Vermont; and St. Johnsbury, Vermont, in order from south to north.

Hartford, Connecticut

Hartford, Connecticut

Hartford is the capital city of the U.S. state of Connecticut and one of the oldest cities in the United States of America. It was the seat of Hartford County until Connecticut disbanded county government in 1960. It is the core city in the Greater Hartford metropolitan area. Census estimates since the 2010 United States census have indicated that Hartford is the fourth-largest city in Connecticut with a 2020 population of 121,054, behind the coastal cities of Bridgeport, New Haven, and Stamford.

Springfield, Massachusetts

Springfield, Massachusetts

Springfield is a city in and the seat of Hampden County, Massachusetts, United States. Springfield sits on the eastern bank of the Connecticut River near its confluence with three rivers: the western Westfield River, the eastern Chicopee River, and the eastern Mill River. At the 2020 census, the city's population was 155,929, making it the third-largest city in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the fourth-most populous city in New England after Boston, Worcester, and Providence. Metropolitan Springfield, as one of two metropolitan areas in Massachusetts, had a population of 699,162 in 2020.

New Haven, Connecticut

New Haven, Connecticut

New Haven is a city in the U.S. state of Connecticut. It is located on New Haven Harbor on the northern shore of Long Island Sound in New Haven County, Connecticut and is part of the New York City metropolitan area. With a population of 134,023 as determined by the 2020 U.S. census, New Haven is the third largest city in Connecticut after Bridgeport and Stamford and the principal municipality of Greater New Haven, which had a total 2020 population of 864,835.

Interstate 691

Interstate 691

Interstate 691 (I-691) is an auxiliary Interstate Highway in Connecticut beginning at I-91 in Meriden and ending at I-84 near the Cheshire–Southington town line. According to the Federal Highway Administration, it is 8.38 miles (13.49 km) in length; however, the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) includes the 0.54 miles of the exit ramp that I-691 uses to the merge with westbound I-84, making their recorded length 8.92 miles (14.36 km) long.

Waterbury, Connecticut

Waterbury, Connecticut

Waterbury is a city in the U.S. state of Connecticut on the Naugatuck River, 33 miles (53 km) southwest of Hartford and 77 miles (124 km) northeast of New York City. Waterbury is the second-largest city in New Haven County, Connecticut. According to the 2020 US Census, in 2020 Waterbury had a population of 114,403. As of the 2010 census, Waterbury had a population of 110,366, making it the 10th largest city in the New York Metropolitan Area, 9th largest city in New England and the 5th largest city in Connecticut.

Wallingford, Connecticut

Wallingford, Connecticut

Wallingford is a town in New Haven County, Connecticut, United States, centrally located between New Haven and Hartford, and Boston and New York City. The population was 44,396 at the 2020 census. The community was named after Wallingford, in England.

New York City

New York City

New York, often called New York City or NYC, is the most populous city in the United States. With a 2020 population of 8,804,190 distributed over 300.46 square miles (778.2 km2), New York City is also the most densely populated major city in the United States, and is more than twice as populous as second-place Los Angeles. New York City lies at the southern tip of New York State, and constitutes the geographical and demographic center of both the Northeast megalopolis and the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the United States both by population and by urban landmass. With over 20.1 million people in its metropolitan statistical area and 23.5 million in its combined statistical area as of 2020, New York is one of the world's most populous megacities, and over 58 million people live within 250 mi (400 km) of the city. New York City is a global cultural, financial, entertainment, and media center with a significant influence on commerce, health care and life sciences, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, dining, art, fashion, and sports. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy, an established safe haven for global investors, and is sometimes described as the capital of the world.

Berlin Turnpike

Berlin Turnpike

The Berlin Turnpike is a 12.17-mile (19.59 km) 4-lane/6-lane divided arterial road mostly carrying U.S. Route 5 and Route 15 in New Haven County and Hartford County in the U.S. state of Connecticut. The road begins one mile south of the Meriden-Berlin town line where Route 15 on the Wilbur Cross Parkway merges with US 5 along North Broad Street in Meriden and terminates at the Hartford city line. The local name of the street varies as it passes through multiple towns.

U.S. Route 5

U.S. Route 5

U.S. Route 5 is a north–south United States highway running through the New England states of Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Vermont. Significant cities along the route include New Haven, Connecticut; Hartford, Connecticut; and Springfield, Massachusetts. From Hartford northward to St. Johnsbury, Vermont, the road closely follows the route of the Connecticut River.

Massachusetts

Massachusetts

Massachusetts, officially the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is the most populous state in the New England region of the Northeastern United States. It borders on the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Maine to the east, Connecticut and Rhode Island to the south, New Hampshire and Vermont to the north, and New York to the west. Massachusetts is the 6th smallest state by land area but is the 15th most populous state and the 3rd most densely populated, after New Jersey and Rhode Island. The state's capital and most populous city, as well as its cultural and financial center, is Boston. Massachusetts is also home to the urban core of Greater Boston, the largest metropolitan area in New England and a region profoundly influential upon American history, academia, and the research economy. Originally dependent on agriculture, fishing, and trade. Massachusetts was transformed into a manufacturing center during the Industrial Revolution. During the 20th century, Massachusetts's economy shifted from manufacturing to services. Modern Massachusetts is a global leader in biotechnology, engineering, higher education, finance, and maritime trade.

Amtrak

Amtrak

The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, doing business as Amtrak, is the national passenger railroad company of the United States. It operates inter-city rail service in 46 of the 48 contiguous U.S. states and three Canadian provinces. Amtrak is a portmanteau of the words America and trak, the latter itself a sensational spelling of track.

Notable people

Since 1975, the Meriden Hall of Fame organization has issued recognitions. In the Meriden City Hall, plaques pay tribute to the inductees.[88]

Arts and humanities

Military

Science and technology

Sports

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Beau Billingslea

Beau Billingslea

John "Beau" Billingslea is an American actor, known as the voice of Jet Black in the critically acclaimed anime Cowboy Bebop, Ogremon in Digimon and Homura and Ay, the Fourth Raikage in Naruto Shippuden. In addition to voice acting, he appeared in many television shows and some films including North and South Book II: Love and War, Just Jordan, The Hannah Montana Movie and Star Trek Into Darkness.

Gary Burr

Gary Burr

Gary Burr, born 1952 in Meriden, Connecticut, is an American musician, songwriter, and record producer, primarily in the country music genre. Many of the songs he has written have become Top-10 hits, the first of which was "Love's Been A Little Bit Hard On Me" released by Juice Newton in 1982. He became a member of the group Pure Prairie League, taking over after Vince Gill departed the group. Burr later moved to Nashville to focus on his songwriting career, though he has continued performing and is currently a member of the Blue Sky Riders. He has written and co-written songs for many country artists, and a few songs for Pop and Rock artists.

Country music

Country music

Country is a music genre originating in the Southern and Southwestern United States. First produced in the 1920s, country primarily focuses on working class Americans and blue-collar American life.

Jennifer DiNoia

Jennifer DiNoia

Jennifer "Jenny" DiNoia is an American singer and stage actress. She is best known for her work in musical theatre, especially Wicked, playing the lead role of Elphaba in various productions around the world.

Isabella Doerfler

Isabella Doerfler

Isabella Ruth Doerfler (1883–1954) was a Connecticut-based American artist who worked for the Federal Arts Project in the 1930s. She was “one of the best renderers of textiles in New England.” Twenty of her watercolors are held in the permanent collections of the National Gallery of Art.

Federal Art Project

Federal Art Project

The Federal Art Project (1935–1943) was a New Deal program to fund the visual arts in the United States. Under national director Holger Cahill, it was one of five Federal Project Number One projects sponsored by the Works Progress Administration (WPA), and the largest of the New Deal art projects. It was created not as a cultural activity, but as a relief measure to employ artists and artisans to create murals, easel paintings, sculpture, graphic art, posters, photography, theatre scenic design, and arts and crafts. The WPA Federal Art Project established more than 100 community art centers throughout the country, researched and documented American design, commissioned a significant body of public art without restriction to content or subject matter, and sustained some 10,000 artists and craft workers during the Great Depression. According to American Heritage, “Something like 400,000 easel paintings, murals, prints, posters, and renderings were produced by WPA artists during the eight years of the project’s existence, virtually free of government pressure to control subject matter, interpretation, or style.”

Addie C. Strong Engle

Addie C. Strong Engle

Addie C. Strong Engle was an American author and publisher. She was one of the oldest Past Grand Matrons, Order of the Eastern Star, of Connecticut. She died in 1926.

Ben Homer

Ben Homer

Ben Homer was an American songwriter, composer and arranger.

Joe Marinelli

Joe Marinelli

Joe Marinelli is an American actor. Born of Italian parents, he was raised in Meriden, Connecticut, and moved to Southern California in 1961. His father George was a WWII veteran whose goal was to show his family the wonders of the United States. By the time Joe was in the 6th grade, he had traveled by car to every state on the Continent at least two times. After being kicked out of 7th grade English classes several times for making sound effects while the class read stories, teacher Stan Zalas told him that what got him into trouble as a student would make him a wonderful actor. Little did Joe know at the time, Zalas was a graduate of the Pasadena Playhouse and a talented actor himself. He directed Joe through Junior High School. From that point on, Joe was in at least two plays every year, but did not want to commit to choosing it as a profession because he didn't want the uncertain lifestyle of an actor. While studying Business at Loyola Marymount University, he was in many plays and acting classes and was accepted into an honor/tutorial program at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, studying privately with their professors. It was there he learned the integrity of the profession and could accept the lifestyle. After completing his degree in Theater, he continued to study with Jean Muir, Michael Shurtleff, and Stella Adler. Muir and Shurtleff became mentors to him. The ten years following college were filled with constant theater performances in Los Angeles, with little or no pay, and occasional co-starring roles, but mostly making his living as a carpenter. His first break was a Guest Starring role on LA Law, where he was seen by Jill Farren Phelps, Executive Producer of Santa Barbara. She contacted him to audition for the role of Gangster/Crossdesser. Bunny Tagliatti, and this changed his life. He got the part, and later won the Soap Opera Digest Award for Outstanding Comedic Performance in Daytime Television. He has continued working ever since, appearing in television, feature films, and commercials.

Conrad Henry Moehlman

Conrad Henry Moehlman

Conrad Henry Moehlman was an American professor of church history at Colgate Rochester Divinity School, where he was emeritus professor. A Baptist and known as theologically liberal, he was a strong proponent of the separation of church and state and wrote a number of books on religion and education, church history, and Christianity.

Charlotte J. Sternberg

Charlotte J. Sternberg

Charlotte Joan Sternberg (1920-2003) was an American painter.

Kevin Lacz

Kevin Lacz

Kevin "Dauber" Lacz is a United States Navy SEAL veteran who served two tours in the Iraq War. His platoon's 2006 deployment to Ramadi has been discussed in several books, including Dick Couch's The Sheriff of Ramadi, Jim DeFelice's Code Name: Johnny Walker, Jocko Willink and Leif Babin's Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy Seals Lead and Win and Chris Kyle's New York Times best-selling autobiography, American Sniper. Lacz's presence in the book led to his involvement in the production of and eventual casting in the Clint Eastwood-directed Oscar-winning biopic of the same name.

In popular culture

Robert Dinero starred in 1989 film Jacknife which was shot in Meriden. Several town sites are seen throughout the film, including Castle Craig at Hubbard Park.

Source: "Meriden, Connecticut", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meriden,_Connecticut.

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See also
References
  1. ^ Bill Ryan, What's in a Name? Old Industrial Fame, The New York Times, January 21, 1996
  2. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 2, 2020.
  3. ^ a b Census - Geography Profile: Meriden city, Connecticut . United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 17, 2021.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Franco, Janis L. (2010). Images of America: Meriden, (pp. 7, 14, 16, 19-20, 32-33, 34, 44, 64, 74, 105, and back cover). Arcadia Publishing: Charleston, SC. Retrieved June 23, 2019.
  5. ^ Martin, Ralph G. Jennie: The Life of Lady Randolph Churchill, Vol. 1, (Prentice-Hall, August 1, 1990), p. 2
  6. ^ "RootsWeb's WorldConnect Project: Ancestors and Cousins – From "Mayflower" to 2012". ancestry.com. Retrieved September 8, 2016.
  7. ^ "Message Boards". ancestry.com. Retrieved September 8, 2016.
  8. ^ (Undated). "Google Patents". (Search "Meriden" and various company names.) Retrieved September 1, 2018.
  9. ^ (Undated). "Meriden’s Silver Lining". ConnecticutHistory.org website. Retrieved July 19, 2015.
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