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The Town

The following is from “History of Norfolk” by Theron Crissey, 1900.

The Township of Norfolk was created by the Connecticut Assembly in 1726 along with the towns of Goshen, Canaan, Cornwall, Kent and Salisbury. The town officially consisted of 22,336 Acres of land, nine miles long and four and a half miles wide.

Not immediately attractive, the town was unsuccessfully offered for sale in Hartford in April 1738. By May of 1750, with no potential bidders, the Assembly ordered the town sold at auction. There were few takers, and the land rights were not completely sold until around 1755. The Town was officially incorporated in 1758 with twenty seven resident families which grew to over seventy families within three years.

The town’s cultural and architectural tone was set by a few founding families, beginning the in mid 1850s, including the Eldridge Family, the Battelle Family, and the Stoeckel Family. Here are some highlights.

Yale Summer Art & Music Program

In the mid 1850’s some Norfolk Residents, in particular the Eldridge and Battelle families, donated approximately $320,000 to Yale University in support of the now existing Battelle Chapel and a Music Library. Yale’s Summer Art & Music Program is now located on the former Battelle Estate.

The Norfolk Library

Donated by Miss Isabella Eldridge, opened in 1889.