By Charles A. Wills
A background of Connecticut, from its early exploration and payment to the nation at the present time.
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Extra info for A historical album of Connecticut
Through the middle of Connecticut flows a major river that empties into Long Island Sound. The Native Americans who lived in the region called their homeland Quinnehtukqt, or ''the land on the long river"the source of the state's name. When the first European explorers arrived in the 1600s, Connecticut was home to between 7,000 and 10,000 Native Americans. Like many Indian groups who lived in the forests of northeastern North America, they spoke the Algonquian language. Four major Native American nations lived in Connecticut.
The destruction of the village finally broke the Pequots' power forever. " Page 13 A Spirit of Independence In the mid-1630s, two more English settlements joined the ''three river towns" of Windsor, Wethersfield, and Hartford. In 1635, English businessmen set up Saybrook Plantation at the mouth of the Connecticut River. Saybrook's founders planned the colony as a haven for wealthy Puritans facing persecution in England, but not many Puritans settled in the colony. Instead, it served as a trading post, and a fort was built to warn the Dutch to keep out of the area.
The sea was another mainstay of the colony's economy. Every coastal town had its fishing fleet. Whalers from Stonington, New London, and other ports sailed out into the Atlantic to hunt sperm whales for their oil, which was used as fuel for lamps. Most of the colony's people, however, made their living from the soil, not the sea. Apart from the Connecticut River Valley, Connecticut's soil tended to be thin and rocky, so farming in colonial Connecticut meant dawn-to-dusk work for all family members.