Litchfield: The Making of a New England Town

On Saturday November 3, Historic New England and the Litchfield Historical Society host an event with local author Rachel Carley to award Litchfield: The Making of a New England Town Historic New England’s eighteenth Book Prize.

The afternoon starts at 1:00 p.m. with a reception and remarks by the prize winner Rachel Carley, followed by a book signing. The award-winning book, published by the Litchfield Historical Society is available for purchase at the event.

To attend, please call 617-994-5934 or e-mail The event is free, but space is limited. The Litchfield Historical Society is at 7 South Street, Litchfield, Connecticut.

Litchfield: The Making of a New England Town is a lively exploration of the town’s history and architecture, not only during the colonial period but also during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The book is generously illustrated with maps, photographs, and paintings of this quintessential New England town, including many that are published for the first time. Carley is a preservation consultant and architectural historian. Her previous books include Building Greenwich, Architecture and Design, 1640 to the Present; The Visual Dictionary of American Domestic Architecture; Cuba: Four Hundred Years of Architectural Heritage; Cabin Fever; A Guide to Biltmore Estate; and Wilderness A to Z. She is a resident of Litchfield.

About Historic New England’s Book Prize

The Historic New England Book Prize recognizes works that advance the understanding of the architecture, landscape, and material culture of New England and the United States from the seventeenth century to the present. This includes works in the decorative arts, archaeology, historic preservation, and the history of photography. To qualify, works need not deal exclusively with New England but must make a significant contribution to our understanding of New England and its relation to the wider world.

About Historic New England

Historic New England is the oldest, largest, and most comprehensive regional heritage organization in the nation. We bring history to life while preserving the past for everyone interested in exploring the authentic New England experience from the seventeenth century to today. Historic New England owns and operates thirty-six historic homes and landscapes spanning five states. The organization shares the region’s history through vast collections, publications, public programs, museum properties, archives, and family stories that document more than 400 years of life in New England. For more information visit

For area information visit

Litchfield Historical Society’s Civil War Exhibition, Opens in April 14 – Nov. 25

Litchfield History Museum

Opening April 14, 2012, the Litchfield Historical Society’s new exhibition The Hour of Conflict will examine the ways in which the American Civil War im­pacted the residents of Litchfield, Con­necticut in the 1860s. This fascinating exhibit will run through November 25th.

Although no battles occurred in Con­necticut, local Litchfield families were directly affected by the events of the Civil War. Men departed town to enlist in the Union army, leaving their families behind to worry and wonder, waiting for a letter to make its way from a campground or battlefield. Women spent their time sewing clothing, wrapping bandages, and sending packages to their loved ones on the front lines. How did Litch­field families deal with the anxiety of war? How did they mourn, celebrate and cope?

The Litchfield Historical Society in­vites visitors and families of all ages to examine these questions through let­ters, diaries, photographs, and artifacts from the Historical Society’s collec­tions. Articles carried by local soldiers, everyday objects used by Litchfield’s children, and items related to Dr. Josiah Gale Beckwith and the Litchfield Peace Movement are just some of the col­lection pieces that will be highlighted. Visitors will also have the chance to view Civil War uniforms thanks to the Museum of Connecticut History and the Cornwall Historical Society.

The exhibit will also incorporate hands-on activities and the opportunity to ex­perience camp life as Litchfield’s men did more than a century and a half ago. Students of the Litchfield Montessori School will act as Junior Curators to re­search, design, and create a special por­tion of the exhibition.

The Hour of Conflict will run through the 2012 and 2013 seasons at the Litchfield History Museum, located at 7 South Street in Litchfield. There will be a special exhibition opening for members on Friday, April 13 at 6:30 pm following this year’s Annual Meeting. The exhibition will open to the public on April 14. For more information visit or call (860) 567-4501. The museum is open Tuesday-Saturday, 11 to 5 and Sunday 1-5. The admission costs are $5 for adults, $3 for seniors, students, and children over 14. Members, law students, and children under 14 are free. These prices include the cost of admission to the Tapping Reeve House and Law School.

About the Litchfield History Museum

The Litchfield Historical Society, founded in 1856, is dedicated to collecting, preserving and interpreting the history of Litchfield County, Connecticut through its museum, research library and historic house. The Ingraham Memorial Research Library houses local business and organizational archives, manuscripts and family papers, reference books, and genealogical material. The Tapping Reeve House, built in 1774, and the 1784 Law School interpret the family and home life of Tapping Reeve and his role in the development of American legal training. The Historical Society is a private non-profit organization supported by an active and growing membership.