50 Interesting & Fun Facts About Connecticut State to Know

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A bridge over water leading to a city with tall buildings under a clear sky
Connecticut is full of fun facts and has amazing places to see, like Hartford

Connecticut was the fifth state to join the United States, becoming a state in 1788. With over two centuries of US history and many years of history before that, Connecticut is a unique state to visit. So what is Connecticut known for?

Connecticut is known for being the home of the famous authors Harriet Beecher Stowe and Mark Twain and the oldest newspaper in the US. It is also where the first American dictionary was written, and insurance was first sold.

Want to learn more? Continue reading for 50 interesting and fun facts about Connecticut state that you might not know, including fun, historical, and even some weird facts!

  • 50 Connecticut facts

50 Connecticut State Facts

  1. Connecticut Fun Facts
    1. Connecticut is called the "Constitution State"
    2. Another nickname for Connecticut is the "Nutmeg State"
    3. The USS Nautilus, the first nuclear submarine, was built in Connecticut
    4. Noah Webster made the first American dictionary in Connecticut
    5. The first insurance comes from Connecticut
    6. The first PEZ manufacturing facility in the US was in Connecticut
    7. The largest maritime museum in the world is in Connecticut
    8. The lollipop was invented in Connecticut
    9. ESPN started in Connecticut
    10. The first helicopter flew in Connecticut
    11. The first phone book was published in 1878 in Connecticut
    12. Connecticut is home to "Mum City"
    13. The first motorized vehicle speed limit was set in Connecticut
    14. The praying mantis is the official state insect of Connecticut
    15. The official state animal of CT is the sperm whale
  2. Interesting facts About Connecticut
    1. The population of Connecticut is just over 3.6 million people
    2. The highest point in Connecticut is on Mount Frissell
    3. The Long Island Sound is the lowest point in the state
    4. The Connecticut River is the longest tidal river in the region
    5. The American Robin is Connecticut's state bird
    6. The Harriet Beecher Stowe house is in Connecticut
    7. The Mark Twain home is where the author wrote Huckleberry Finn
    8. The state flower of Connecticut is the Mountain Laurel
    9. "Qui transtulit sustinet" is the official state motto of Connecticut
    10. The Scoville Memorial Library is the oldest library in the US
    11. Connecticut is the 3rd smallest state by area
    12. Connecticut's biggest city is Bridgeport
    13. Forests cover over 60% of Connecticut
    14. Edwin Land, the inventor of the Polaroid Camera, was born in Connecticut
    15. The first steel mill in America was in Connectitcut
  3. Important Facts About Connecticut
    1. The first Europeans to arrive in Connecticut were from the Netherlands
    2. The English were the first to settle in Connecticut
    3. The first written constitution was in Connecticut
    4. Connecticut was the fifth state to join the US
    5. The name for Connecticut comes from the Native American word "quinetucket"
    6. Connecticut is one of the six states that make up New England
  4. Scary Facts About Connecticut
    1. Easton, Connecticut, is home to one of the most haunted cemeteries
    2. Dinosaur tracks have been found in Connecticut
    3. The first witch execution was in Connecticut
    4. Connecticut was raided during the revolutionary war
  5. Weird Facts About Connecticut
    1. Connecticut used to have two state capitals
    2. License plates started in Connecticut
    3. Harriet Beecher Stowe and Mark Twain were neighbors
    4. Connecticut did not ratify the 18th Amendment
    5. Connecticut is home to the first hamburger
  6. Historical Facts About Connecticut
    1. The first woman to get a patent in the US was from Connecticut
    2. Connecticut is one of the original thirteen colonies
    3. Multiple United States presidents have attended Yale University
    4. The Hartford Courant is the oldest continuously published newspaper in the country
    5. Only one US president was born in Connecticut

Show all

Connecticut Fun Facts

A seaport with vernacular brick houses overlooking the water against green trees
Connecticut has the largest maritime museum in the world, the Mystic Seaport Museum

First, let's start with many of the fun facts on Connecticut!

Connecticut is called the "Constitution State"

The name comes from the first-ever written constitution that comes from Connecticut. The Fundamental Orders of 1638 and 1639 are considered the first written set of state rules. They were written by some of the first settlers in the state to create a commonwealth.

Another nickname for Connecticut is the "Nutmeg State"

The origin of the unofficial nickname is unknown. It may have come from stories of peddlers selling worthless wooden imitations of nutmegs. Maybe the people who bought the nutmegs from them came up with the nickname. Many buyers may have been tricked by the resourceful but dishonest practice of the peddlers.

The USS Nautilus, the first nuclear submarine, was built in Connecticut

Construction of the submarine started in 1951, and it was launched on January 21, 1954. Then it was added to the United States Navy as the first commissioned nuclear-powered ship. In 1958, the Nautilus and a crew of 116 made it to the North Pole on the ship, which was previously thought to be impossible.

Noah Webster made the first American dictionary in Connecticut

He published A Compendious Dictionary of the English Language in 1806. That accomplishment was not enough for him, so he then created An American Dictionary of the English Language, a project for which he learned 26 languages. It was published in 1828 and had 70,000 entries.

A downtown skyline with modern buildings overlooking a road winding through trees
Hartford, CT, is where the state's first publicly owned insurance company opened

The first insurance comes from Connecticut

It started in Hartford when Jeremiah Wadsworth started offering informal fire insurance throughout the town. The state's first publicly owned insurance company opened in 1810. The insurance industry in Connecticut became more popular when it paid out claims after two New York City fires in 1835 and 1845.

The first PEZ manufacturing facility in the US was in Connecticut

The factory in Orange, CT, opened in 1973 after the candy was invented in Vienna, Austria, in 1952. A visitors' center was opened at the factory in 2011, where you can learn how the candy is made and see some of the iconic dispensers.

A black and red sailing ship docked at a port beside some trees under a clear sky
Mystic Seaport Museum is home to the oldest commercial ship, the Charles W. Morgan

The largest maritime museum in the world is in Connecticut

The Mystic Seaport Museum in Mystic, CT, opened in 1929, and today it covers 19 acres with exhibits, working shipyards, and the recreation of a New England coastal village. One of the most famous ships at the museum is the 1841 Charles W. Morgan, the oldest commercial ship in the country.

The lollipop was invented in Connecticut

George Smith invented the candy on a stick, and named it after a racehorse from his local fair. In 1908, he tried to patent the name "lollipop" but could not get it approved since the word was found in a dictionary. Finally, he was able to patent "Lolly Pop" on October 13, 1931.

ESPN started in Connecticut

The company launched on September 7, 1979, in Plainville, Connecticut. Today, the brand still operates out of Connecticut but in Bristol. The Bristol campus has over 1.3 million square feet of building space on 120 acres of land. They have five thousand companies around the world, with 80% of the company owned by ABC.

The first helicopter flew in Connecticut

The VS-300 was the first helicopter that was able to fly. It took off in Stratford, Connecticut, on September 14, 1939. The flight lasted for just a few seconds. The helicopter was designed by Igor Sikorsky and was constructed by the Vought-Sikorsky Aircraft Division of the United Aircraft Corporation.

The first phone book was published in 1878 in Connecticut

It was published on February 21, 1878, just two years after the telephone was invented. There were 50 listings, and they were all for people and businesses with a phone. The book was not actually a book, however, as it was just a list on a single piece of paper.

sainaniritu/Depositphotos.com
A lake surrounded by a park with rides, some houses, and green trees
Bristol, Connecticut, is known as the "Mum City" due to its supply of Mums every fall

Connecticut is home to "Mum City"

Bristol, CT, grows and sells thousands of Mums every fall. The biggest Mum garden is six acres on Chippens Hill. There is also an annual Mum Festival in the town where more than 100 types of Mums are on display.

The first motorized vehicle speed limit was set in Connecticut

The limit was set at a maximum of 12 miles per hour on city roads and 15 mph on country roads. The law was passed on May 21, 1901. It also required drivers to go slower or even stop near horse-drawn carriages and wagons so that the car did not scare the horses. Today, the speed limit in Connecticut is much higher at 65 mph.

The praying mantis is the official state insect of Connecticut

It was adopted as the state insect on October 1, 1977. Even though it is the state insect, the praying mantis is not native to North America and was likely brought over by European settlers. It is also called the European mantis since it is native there.

The official state animal of CT is the sperm whale

It was adopted as the official state animal of Connecticut in 1975 because it contributed to the state's history. Unfortunately, the sperm whale is endangered, but it was also chosen as the state animal to raise awareness for the species.

Interesting facts About Connecticut

One of the interesting facts about Connecticut state; it has 3.6 million people
Connecticut has a population of around 3.6 million people

Next up are some interesting facts of Connecticut that you probably didn't know!

A skyline of modern downtown buildings with a road and trees in front
Almost 18% of the residents of Connecticut are aged 65 years and older

The population of Connecticut is just over 3.6 million people

The state has a very steady population, with only 30,000 more people living in Connecticut in 2021 than in 2010. Around 20% of the population of Connecticut is under 18, and 18% of its residents are 65 years or older.

The highest point in Connecticut is on Mount Frissell

The highest point of the mountain in CT is 2,380 feet. The mountain is part of the Berkshires, which are mainly in Massachusetts. Even though this point is the highest in Connecticut, it is not the peak of Mount Frissell, just an apex on the side. The actual peak is in MA.

A rocky shoreline under a partly-cloudy sky
The Long Island Sound is at an elevation of 0 feet, exactly at sea level

The Long Island Sound is the lowest point in the state

The Long Island Sound borders Connecticut to the south. It is exactly at sea level, at an elevation of 0 feet. The water is on the southern border of Connecticut and eventually turns into the Atlantic Ocean.

A river winding through autumn foliage and green grass under a partly-cloudy sky
The Connecticut River runs across Connecticut and three other states

The Connecticut River is the longest tidal river in the region

The river runs for 407 miles in Connecticut and parts of New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts. The lower 60 miles of the river are tidal, so you can see the rise and fall of the tides along this stretch of the Connecticut River. The river is also popular with tourists, river cruises run up and down the Connecticut river providing a fun afternoon out.

The American Robin is Connecticut's state bird

Early colonists named the bird after a similar English bird, and it was made the official state bird in 1943. Many robins spend their winters in New England, including Connecticut.

A walkway leading to a vernacular white house with Victorian architecture
Harriet Beecher Stowe wrote over 30 books during her life

The Harriet Beecher Stowe house is in Connecticut

Harriet Beecher Stowe was a 19th-century author who was born and raised in Connecticut until she was 21 and did not return until after she retired. She wrote over 30 books during her life, but the most popular and impactful was Uncle Tom's Cabin, which was an anti-slavery book.

sepavone/Depositphotos.com
A pathway leading to a wooden vernacular house with Victorian architecture
The Mark Twain home spans 11,500 square feet and has 25 rooms

The Mark Twain home is where the author wrote Huckleberry Finn

Mark Twain and his family moved into the home in Hartford in 1874. Sam, which was Mark Twain's actual name, and his wife Olivia designed the home with the help of Edward Tuckerman Potter. It ended up being 11,500 square feet with 25 rooms and cost more than 40 thousand dollars to build.

The shore of a pond with green trees and Mountain Laurel flowers
Mountain Laurel became the state flower of Connecticut in 1907

The state flower of Connecticut is the Mountain Laurel

It was adopted as the state flower in 1907, and it has a strong fragrance. The flower is white and pink and grows on shrubs that make the flower stand out. The first mention of the flower was in the 1624 diary of John Smith.

"Qui transtulit sustinet" is the official state motto of Connecticut

The motto translates to "He Who Transplanted Still Sustains." The origin of the motto is not known for sure. But former State Librarian Charles J. Hoadly suggests it could come from the 80th Psalm, which has a similar connotation. The quote reads, "Thou hast brought a vine out of Egypt: thou hast cast out the heathen and planted it."

The Scoville Memorial Library is the oldest library in the US

The public-funded library opened in 1771 when Richard Smith offered to bring 200 books to Salisbury, Connecticut, if enough citizens would subsidize it. People continued to add to the free library over time. Jonathan Scoville, a town native, left $12,000 to the library in his will, and the current library building was constructed.

Connecticut is the 3rd smallest state by area

Connecticut covers 5,018 square miles. Only Delaware and Rhode Island are smaller. If you wanted to fill Alaska, the biggest state, with pieces of land the size of Connecticut, you would need 118 of them.

A white lighthouse on a rocky shore under a partly-cloudy sky
One of the facts about Connecticut state is that Bridgeport is its biggest city

Connecticut's biggest city is Bridgeport

Its population is just under 150,000 people. The second biggest city is Stamford, with a population of 136,000, and the third is New Haven, with a population of 135,000. The capital of Hartford is the fourth largest city, with a population of 120,000 people. Other cities include West Hartford, with 64,000 people; New Britain, with 74,000 people; and East Lyme, with a population of 19,000.

A forest of green trees surrounding a hill covered with greenery
Connecticut has 1,873,471 acres of land fully covered with forests

Forests cover over 60% of Connecticut

The University of Connecticut's Center for Land Use Education and Research surveyed the land to determine how much is forested. Using remote sensing, the center found 1.8 million acres of forest in the state. This is just over 60% of the 3,078,017 total acres in the state.

Edwin Land, the inventor of the Polaroid Camera, was born in Connecticut

He was born on May 7, 1909, in Bridgeport, CT. He invented the Polaroid Land Camera in 1947. It produced a print picture just one minute after it was taken. But that was not the only thing he invented. He received over 500 patents during his lifetime for his inventions and innovations.

The first steel mill in America was in Connectitcut

It started operating in 1728 in Simsbury, Connecticut. It was also the first place in the country where copper was found.

Important Facts About Connecticut

Aerial of colorful concrete buildings surrounded by green trees
The representatives from Connecticut signed the US Constitution in 1788

There are a lot of important events and historical facts about the state, so let's look at some Connecticut facts and history.

The first Europeans to arrive in Connecticut were from the Netherlands

They came in 1614 and founded trading posts along the Connecticut River. They came exploring the land and did not stay in what is now Connecticut but continued exploring further along the river.

The English were the first to settle in Connecticut

Despite the first Europeans to arrive in Connecticut being Dutch, the Dutch did not actually settle in the area until more than two decades later. The English arrived and settled before the Dutch in 1633, and the settlements became a British colony.

The first written constitution was in Connecticut

The "Fundamental Orders" were written in Connecticut in 1638. This constitution was written by Roger Ludlow and signed by the representatives of Wethersfield, Windsor, and Hartford. They wanted to implement a single government for their new colony. The document prioritized the good of the community over the good of an individual person.

Connecticut was the fifth state to join the US

Representatives from the state signed the US Constitution in 1788, five years after the colonies won the American Revolution. This was 10,000 years after people first settled on the land and 174 years after the first European settlers arrived.

The name for Connecticut comes from the Native American word "quinetucket"

The name comes from the Mohican people, one of the Native American tribes that lived in the area. They used the word to refer to the Connecticut River. In their language, it means "the long river" or "long tidal river."

Connecticut is one of the six states that make up New England

New England is the northeastern region of the United States. The other five states in the region are Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Vermont. The name comes from Captain John Smith, a British explorer who named the area after England in 1614.

Scary Facts About Connecticut

christianhinkle/Depositphotos.com
An alley with shops on each side and fairy lights above at night
Connecticut is where the first witch execution took place in 1647

There are also some scary but fun facts of Connecticut.

Easton, Connecticut, is home to one of the most haunted cemeteries

The cemetery opened more than 400 years ago, and the White Lady is one of the ghosts that live there. People have spotted her wearing a bright white nightgown with her face concealed by a white bonnet. Another ghost is Red Eyes, named after the fact that people have reported seeing his red eyes watching them. He is said to have burned to death across the street from the cemetery.

Dinosaur tracks have been found in Connecticut

Dinosaur State Park is home to 200 million-year-old fossils. There are more than 750 dinosaur tracks at the park that were discovered in 1966. Today the dinosaur tracks are along a pathway that you can walk, and they are in the same spots in which they were discovered.

The first witch execution was in Connecticut

Alice Young was hanged in 1647 in Windsor, and dozens of others were accused and either executed or acquitted after her. The witch trials in the state took place between 1647 and 1697, but all the executions took place before 1662.

Connecticut was raided during the revolutionary war

However, the British never took control of the land, so the state was important in manufacturing goods to use during the war. Many men from the state also joined the battles, with thousands fighting in the Battles of Lexington and Concord in 1775.

Weird Facts About Connecticut

A walkway between green grass surrounded by trees in front of tall concrete buildings
New Haven was one of the two state capitals of Connecticut between 1701 and 1874

With so much history in the state, there are also some weird facts about Connecticut's history.

A state capitol building with Gothic architecture and a golden dome under a clear sky
In 1866, it was decided to choose Hartford as the only state capital of Connecticut

Connecticut used to have two state capitals

Between 1701 and 1874, New Haven and Hartford were both the capital of Connecticut. The two cities shared the duties of being the capital, and each one had designated responsibilities. For example, the General Assembly always met in Hartford. In 1866, the state decided to choose one state capital, and they chose Hartford.

License plates started in Connecticut

In 1903, Connecticut started requiring its residents to register their cars, and the residents had to provide their own license plates. But, they did not start issuing official state license plates until 1905. In 1937, Connecticut was the first state to make permanent license plates made from aluminum.

Harriet Beecher Stowe and Mark Twain were neighbors

Twain built his house in Hartford, CT, in 1874, and Stowe lived next door. They were neighbors for 17 years until 1891 when Mark Twain moved out of Hartford.

Connecticut did not ratify the 18th Amendment

The 18th Amendment was the amendment that banned the manufacture, sale, and transportation of alcohol and thus started the Prohibition period. However, when it came time to pass the amendment, Connecticut was one of two states which did not ratify it, the other state being Rhode Island. Connecticut actually had its own state prohibition law in place between 1854 and 1872.

A red brick restaurant with a red door and a sign that reads "Louis Lunch"
Louis' Lunch restaurant is the pioneer of serving the "Hamburger Sandwich"

Connecticut is home to the first hamburger

Louis' Lunch restaurant started serving the item in 1895, calling it the "Hamburger Sandwich." They continue to serve the hamburger sandwich today, served on white toast and topped with cheese, onion, and tomato. The meat for the hamburger is ground fresh daily with five types of meat.

Historical Facts About Connecticut

A walkway between green grass leading to a brown university building
Five Former US Presidents have attended Yale University, including George W. Bush

Finally, let's look at some cool Connecticut history facts.

The first woman to get a patent in the US was from Connecticut

Mary Kies started weaving silk and thread into straw to make hats. Her patent was granted on May 15, 1809, and straw hats became a big fashion trend. Her receiving a patent was a big deal. President Madison signed the patent, and the First Lady sent her a letter of congratulations.

Connecticut is one of the original thirteen colonies

One of the interesting facts about Connecticut history is that it was one of the original thirteen colonies. These colonies lined the eastern coast of the United States and were the thirteen areas in which settlers originally lived.

Some Puritans from Massachusetts moved and created Connecticut and New Haven when they decided they wanted to settle where they could live more piously. Connecticut and New Haven eventually became one colony.

Multiple United States presidents have attended Yale University

There have been five presidents to attend the school, with Taft and both Bushes attending undergraduate classes. Gerald Ford and Bill Clinton went to Yale Law School. Five is the second-highest number of United States presidents to attend any one college after the eight who have attended Harvard.

The Hartford Courant is the oldest continuously published newspaper in the country

The newspaper was founded in 1764, and is also the largest newspaper in the state. Today, it brings the news to people in print, on its website, and on social media like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. The newspaper has award-winning writers, including Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists.

Only one US president was born in Connecticut

George W. Bush was born in New Haven, Connecticut, on July 6, 1946. He only lived in the state for two years before moving to California and then Texas. He did return to the state when he was 18 to earn his bachelor's degree from Yale University.

Conclusion

Connecticut is an old state with a lot of history, from the first Dutch explorers to having the first written constitution. It is also home to a lot of inventions like the lollipop, the first helicopter to fly successfully, and the first phone book. Connecticut also has a lot of nature, like the longest tidal river in New England and Mount Frissell, the highest point in the state.

This article was edited by Henry Grahame.

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Written by Sarah Hartness

Sarah_Hartness WRITER I am a Chicago-based travel writer who loves to explore the Midwest and beyond. I have traveled all over the US and Europe. I look forward to going to Latin America and Asia next!


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