It Happened in Connecticut

Overview

All-new additions to the entertaining and bestselling line of regional history for all ages! IT HAPPENED IN CONNECTICUT (TwoDot)Diana Ross McCain More than twenty true stories from the Nutmeg State—including how it got its nickname, as well as the country’s first witch trials, the Charter Oak incident, and the invention of modern football. Diana Ross McCain is a historian from Durham, Connecticut. IT HAPPENED IN PHILADELPHIAScott Bruce The rich history of the City of Brotherly Love comes alive with this ...

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Overview

All-new additions to the entertaining and bestselling line of regional history for all ages! IT HAPPENED IN CONNECTICUT (TwoDot)Diana Ross McCain More than twenty true stories from the Nutmeg State—including how it got its nickname, as well as the country’s first witch trials, the Charter Oak incident, and the invention of modern football. Diana Ross McCain is a historian from Durham, Connecticut. IT HAPPENED IN PHILADELPHIAScott Bruce The rich history of the City of Brotherly Love comes alive with this compelling selection of true stories. Learn about William Penn’s “Holy Experiment,” the background of “American Bandstand,” and the creation of the “Mummer’s” parade. This book has wide appeal for both history buffs and browsing tourists. Scott Bruce is a comedian and host of a PBS-TV trivia show called “The Pennsylvania Game.” IT HAPPENED ON THE SANTA FE TRAIL Stephen J. Glassman This emigrant trail stretching from central Missouri to northern New Mexico was a critical artery in opening up the American West. This collection of suspenseful-but-true stories includes the tragedy of the Sand Creek Massacre as well as the discovery of “Boone’s Lick.” Other tales include appearances by Spanish conquistadors, cowboys of every stripe, and even the man who cured malaria. Stephen Glassman is a former Fulbright scholar and currently a professor at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida. IT HAPPENED IN MINNESOTADarrell Ehrlick From the heartland of America come these thirty compelling tales. Starting with a harrowing battle between white settlers and Sioux Indians, swinging around to encompass a bank robbery masterminded by Jesse James, and ending with the creation of the Mall of America, Minnesota has never seen its history written quite like this. Darrell Ehrlick is editor of Minnesota’s Winona Daily News and lives with his wife on the state border in Trempealeau, Wisconsin.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Thank you to Diana McCain for these twenty-five forays into the big house of Connecticut history. Her writing is clear and the episodes well chosen. Taken together, they prove that what I didn’t know about my own state could fill a book.” —Charles Monagan, editor of Connecticut Magazine and author of Connecticut Icons
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780762746439
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 7/17/2008
  • Series: It Happened In Series
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 168
  • Sales rank: 718,870
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Diana Ross McCain has written about Connecticut’s past for more than 25 years and holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history. A frequent contributor to Early American Life and Connecticut magazines, and The Hartford Courant, McCain wrote the award-winning publication To All on Equal Terms, the story of Connecticut’s official state heroine, Prudence Crandall. She lives in Durham, Connecticut.

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Read an Excerpt

The Dark DayMay 19, 1780 The darkness appeared in the western sky around daybreak, then approached steadily and ominously. By midday it blotted out the sun, making it impossible to work outdoors or read a newspaper inside. Chickens fooled into thinking night had fallen returned to their roosts, while nocturnal whippoorwills started to sing. This may sound like a scene from an alien invasion horror movie – think Independence Day – but it actually happened in Connecticut. On a spring morning in 1780, the heavens turned mysteriously – and alarmingly – dark across much of the state. Friday, May 19 dawned partly cloudy, with scattered light showers. In Norwich the darkness first appeared around 8 a.m. By 11, a person “standing in the middle of a room furnished with 3 windows . . . could not read one word in a common newspaper,” wrote attorney Benjamin Huntington. In Thompson, about 40 miles northeast of Norwich as the crow flew – or would have flown if the false nightfall hadn’t sent him back to his nest – Joseph Joslin first noticed the darkness around 10 in the morning, while he was building a stone wall. By noon, the gloom was so dense Joslin couldn’t see far enough to continue working. He went inside, where candles had to be lit in order to see to prepare the midday meal. At that very hour similar conditions were recorded in New Haven, 70 miles southwest of Thompson, by Yale divinity professor Dr. Napthali Daggett. In Hartford, the Connecticut General Assembly was in session when the darkness began to manifest itself. Jedediah Strong of Litchfield, clerk of the House of Representatives, reached deep into his Yale-graduate vocabulary for words impressive enough – although likely incomprehensible to the average man on the street – to describe the weird transformation. “A rolling, lowering sky, the vapours forming as it were an extensive concave integument in our hemisphere” created “a solemn gloom of unusual darkness” by 10 a.m., Strong wrote in the Journal of the House. Conditions lightened briefly, “so that the sun became barely apparent through the heterogeneous penumbra.” But soon a darker cloud arrived, so completely blocking the sun’s rays that people couldn’t read or write or even recognize each other at short distances. The House adjourned at 11 a.m. . . .

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Table of Contents


Acknowledgments     ix
Preface     xi
The First Witchcraft Executions in North America, 1647-1663     1
Refugees from Royal Revenge, 1660-1689     7
Hostile Takeover, Colonial Style, 1665     13
Israel Putnam, Original American Folk Hero, 1718-1790     18
Newgate's Caverns for Criminals, 1773-1827     24
Stealth Turtle, 1775-1776     30
The Dark Day, 1780     36
Massacre at Fort Griswold, 1781     40
George Washington's Inauguration Suit, 1789     46
The First American Cookbook, 1796     52
Perkins's Tractors, 1796-1810     57
Good for Whatever Ails Ya, 1796-1850     63
Turning 'Em Out like Clockwork, 1814     69
Breaking the Soundless Barrier, 1817     74
Burning Rubber, 1839     80
Pain Killer, 1844     86
Abby Smith and Her Cows, 1873-1878     93
The Father of American Football, 1880s     99
The Great Blizzard, 1888     104
Arsenic and Multiple Homicide, 1910-1919     109
A Lady Governor, but Never a Governor's First Lady, 1975     116
Miraculous Disaster, 1978     121
Hangin' with the Governor, 1991     125
Remembering 9/11     130
The Nutmeg State, 1800s, through Today     134
Bibliography     139
Index     151
About the Author     156
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