Connecticut History, Language and Culture
History of Connecticut
Dutch explorers were the first to touch ground in modern day Connecticut, and by 1623 were regularly trading with the local Native Americans. After signing the Treaty of Hartford in 1650, the Dutch withdrew, leaving room for the expanding English colonies to take hold of the region.
Over a century later Connecticut was one of the 13 colonies that aided in the overthrow of the Crown in the American Revolution. With the colonies having won their independence, the state’s economy flourished as sea ports grew and textile factories were built.
During the Civil War, Connecticut played a main role in supporting the Union to a victory over the southern Confederacy. Because it was a haven for manufacturing and industry, the state supplied ammunition and weapons to the troops, and many residents fought for the Union army. In the wake of the Civil War, Connecticut abolished slavery entirely in 1848; however, like many northern states Connecticut had gradual emancipation measures in place as early as 1784. In the early 18th century Connecticut became a destination for immigrants across the globe. Italian, Polish, and Eastern Europeans flocked to the small New England state and brought with them an unskilled and largely Catholic labour force.
Like the rest of the country, Connecticut suffered after the stock market crash of 1929, but during WWII manufacturing picked up once again and the state became a leader in munitions manufacturing, with industries for rifles, engines, and countless other items.
Urbanization took hold in the mid-1900s, as the rich elite moved to suburban areas and crime and drugs took hold of the state’s urban areas. As the 20th century progressed, the crime rates lowered throughout the state. Today, Connecticut has one of the highest per capita incomes in the US, and the agricultural industry is booming, with fish, cattle, and tobacco being some of its major products.
Religion in Connecticut
The majority of Connecticut is Christian, with the largest group Protestants. There are also large groups of Roman Catholics and non-religious residents. A small number of Jewish, Mormon, and Muslim people reside in Connecticut as well, along with other religious groups.
Social Conventions in Connecticut
Yale University, one of the eight Ivy League universities, is located in New Haven, Connecticut. Every other year, Yale hosts the fiercely cutthroat football game between Yale and Harvard University in Massachusetts. Connecticut residents, and especially Yale alumni, are highly competitive about the outcome of the game.
New England is infamous for its aggressive drivers, and Connecticut is no different. If you’re on the road in this state, always be aware and have your eyes on the road!