The serene and beautiful village green in Litchfield, Connecticut hardly seems the setting for spies and intrigue. But during the Revolutionary War, this classic New England town in Western Connecticut was a hotbed of activity. This surprising history will come to life during the Litchfield History Museum’s Spy Weekend, September 19 to 21.
The special activities are added reason to discover Litchfield, a town also noted for its early architecture, Colonial inns, fine dining and great shopping.
The fun begins on Friday night when a showing of the film, The Scarlet Coat, a 1955 swashbuckling historical drama starring Michael Wilding, Cornel Wilde, and George Saunders. The movie tells of the creation of the first “American Secret Service,” with Litchfield’s own Benjamin Tallmadge in the main role (though Hollywood has changed his name). The film will be shown at 7 p.m. at the Litchfield Community Center. Admission is free and popcorn will be served!
Author Richard Welch will discuss his new book on Benjamin Tallmadge, “General Washington’s Commando.” on Sunday at 3 p.m. Welch will describe Tallmadge’s roles during the Revolutionary War, including his work as intelligence and counter-intelligence officer, as well as dragoon commander and master of combined land-sea operations. The program is free for members; $5 for non-members.
A guided walking tour on Saturday at 10 a.m. will relive Litchfield during the Revolution, when families were divided by those loyal to the British crown and those seeking independence and intrigue were in the air. Guides will point out historic sites where prisoners of war were jailed, and where a military presence guarded stores and provisions. The tour is free to members, $10 for non-members. Registration is required for the Saturday and Sunday programs, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at
On Sunday afternoon, there will be an added bonus as the Litchfield Fire Company hosts the 131st annual state Firefighter’s Convention ending with a parade featuring over 1,000 firefighters from all over Connecticut.
For information about lodging, dining and other activities in the area and a free copy of UNWIND, a full-color, 163-page booklet detailing what to do and see, and where to stay, shop and dine in Fairfield County and the Litchfield Hills of Western Connecticut, contact the Western Connecticut Visitors Bureau, PO Box 968, Litchfield, CT 06759, (860) 567-4506, or visit www.litchfieldhills.com