Photos of the Fourth
Bridgeport: The Barnum Museum
Since 1893, the Barnum Museum "has been committed to the preservation and interpretation of Bridgeport's industrial and social history, as well as being an outstanding educational resource for students of all ages." P.T. Barnum made his home in Bridgeport. The Museum is currently undergoing restoration following the June 24, 2010 tornado that struck Bridgeport and endangered this architectural treasure. Until it can re-open, it continues to fulfill its mission through online and off-site exhibitions and education efforts.
Bridgeport: Fayerweather Island at Seaside Park
Located at the mouth of Black Rock Harbor, Fayerweather Island is a seven-acre island accessible by walking along a large, sturdy seawall that connects it to Bridgeport's Seaside Park (see first slide in the slideshow above). The island is the site of the Black Rock Harbor Light, a lighthouse first built in 1808. For an interesting history of the lighthouse, click here.
Darien: Ring's End Bridge
This elegant stone bridge stands along Ring's End Road and is a point of entry onto the scenic Long Neck Peninsula, a residential neighborhood with views of Manhattan across Long Island Sound.
Easton: Hemlock Reservoir
In addition to being part of the serene beauty of Easton's landscape, Hemlock Reservoir is also part of the public water supply. Water leaves this reservoir via a small brook, eventually working its way through Fairfield and emptying into Long Island Sound at Southport Harbor (pictured below).
Fairfield: Southport Harbor
When the weather's nice on a summer day, an estimated 30,000 to 50,000 boats are out on Long Island Sound. Many are kept in the harbors and marinas of the seven towns and cities along the coast of Connecticut's fourth district. In the 19th century, the farms of Fairfield shipped produce out of Southport Harbor. Today, you're more likely to find recreational boats waiting to take sail from this picturesque spot.
Greenwich: Binney Park and Perrot Memorial Library
Binney Park is a 32-acre "focal point of beauty, relaxation, and recreation" located in Old Greenwich. The park features walking trails and footbridges that wind among mature plantings, ponds and brooks. There are several playing fields and tennis courts, as well as a seasonal ice rink. A network of nature trails was purchased and deeded to the town by Helen Binney Kitchel and Dan Wade. In 1931, Mr. Wade, an architect, designed the Perrot Memorial Library, visible here across Sound Beach Avenue.
Surrounded by historic colonial-era homes, churches and the Monroe Town Hall, the "Center Green" is indeed the center of historic Monroe. The green dates back to 1764. During the American Revolution, French forces under Rochambeau camped here along their march from Rhode Island to Virginia, which ended with the decisive Battle of Yorktown. Fittingly, today's residents of Monroe celebrate Independence Day on the green.
New Canaan: Elm Street
Step off the Metro-North train at New Canaan station, and you will be at the center of Elm Street. This stretch of small retail shops, offices, restaurants and a movie theater forms the heart of this quintessential New England town. Tours of the late Philip Johnson's home and arcitectural masterpiece, the Glass House, depart from the Visitor's Center, also located on Elm Street.
Norwalk: Maritime Aquarium (Long Island Sound Exhibit)
The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is home to river otters, sea turtles, harbor seals, sharks, jellyfish, and more. It is also an educational resource, teaching visitors about the ecosystem in and around Long Island Sound. More than 150,000 school children participate in the educational programs of the Maritime Aquarium each year.
Norwalk: Community College
Norwalk Community College is one of many post-secondary institutions in Connecticut's fourth district. More than 6,000 students take courses at NCC, about two-thirds of whom are enrolled full-time. NCC moved to its current modern campus in 1989.
Oxford: Southford Falls State Park
The site of a former paper mill, Southford Falls State Park is now home to ball fields, picnic areas, hiking trails and great fishing spots. The remains of the old mill building were removed in 1934 by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The covered bridge pictured here spans the Eightmile Brook, which flows from Papermill Pond to the Housatonic River.
Redding: Memorial Green
The 19th-century Old Town House (the structure on the left) is set on the edge of this green. A gathering place for public meetings since 1834, it is still in use today. Each year on Memorial Day, the town parade concludes here, where a plaque set into stone records the names of those lost in World War I.
Ridgefield: Community Center (Lounsbury House)
The Lounsbury House serves as “the heartbeat of Ridgefield community life.” Owned by the town and operated by a non-profit organization, this building was once the home of former Connecticut governor and Ridgefield native Phineas C. Lounsbury. Today, it houses a preschool and is used for special events and meetings, from weddings to town hall meetings with elected representatives.
Shelton: Huntington Green
This green sits at the heart of the former town of Huntington (which consolidated with Shelton in 1919). The town, and by extension this green, is named for a Connecticut signer of the Declaration of Independence and seventh President of the Continetal Congress, Samuel Huntington.
Stamford Museum and Nature Center
Located just north of the Merritt Parkway, the Stamford Museum and Nature Center offers educational programs, exhibits, an observatory and planetarium, a playground, a working farm, hiking trails and more among its 110 acres. The Bendel Mansion Museum pictured here houses a collection featuring 19th and 20th century American art, Native American art and culture, and New England natural history.
Stamford: Transportation Center
Since 1849, passenger trains have served Stamford. Today, the Stamford Transportation Center is among the largest and most important stations in the Northeast. Amtrak's Acela high-speed service stops in Stamford, allowing residents of Connecticut's fourth district to reach Boston or Washington with ease. Stamford is the busiest station along the New Haven line of the Metro-North commuter railroad as well, with trains arriving and departing every few minutes during rush hours.
Trumbull: Town Hall
In addition to housing the offices of municipal government of Trumbull, town hall and its grounds preserve and celebrate the history of our state. The statue shown is of Jonathan Trumbull, a seminal figure in the polictial history of the United States. Trumbull was the only colonial governor to support the Revolution. He refused to enforce the stamp act, rejected a request to support the British troops at Lexington and Concord and dedicated Connecticut's resources to the Revolution. He has the distinction of having been appointed by the king and subsequently elected to retain his office. One of his sons, also named Jonathan, was an aide to George Washington during the war and served as the second Speaker of the House of Representatives. Another son, John, was a painter whose works include the famous depiction of the presentation of the Declaration of Independence to the Continental Congress which appears on the two dollar bill and hangs in the Capitol Rotunda.
Weston: Devil's Den
With more than twenty miles of trails winding through more than 1,700 acres, Devil's Den Nature Preserve welcomes about 40,000 visitors per year. It is maintained and operated by the Nature Conservancy non-profit organization. Its name derives from local lore suggesting that a mark in a particular boulder looks like a hoof.
Westport: Ruth Steinkraus-Cohen Bridge
This bridge, along the Post Road (a major thoroughfare), spans the Saugatuck River near Westport's commercial center. The annual appearance of American flags along the bridge is as certain a sign of the approaching summer as longer days and warmer weather.
Wilton: Weir Farm National Historic Site
The National Park Service notes that "Weir Farm National Historic Site is the only National Park Service Site dedicated to American painting." Once the summer retreat of American impressionist painter J. Alden Weir, this treasure remains a locus of artistic activity and inspiration. Its Artist-in-Residence program has supported more than 100 artists from around the country and around the world, enabling them to live and work in Wilton for a short time and exhibit work locally. The grounds of the park, including the Sunken Garden, are worth a visit on their own. A collection of photos from around Weir Farm can be found here.