Connecticut facts for kids
Quick facts for kids
|State of Connecticut|
|Anthem: "Yankee Doodle"
Map of the United States with Connecticut highlighted
|Before statehood||Connecticut Colony|
|Admitted to the Union||January 9, 1788 (5th)|
|Largest metro||Greater New York (combined)
Greater Hartford (metro and urban)
|Legislature||Connecticut General Assembly|
|• Upper house||Connecticut Senate|
|• Lower house||Connecticut House of Representatives|
|• Total||5,567 sq mi (14,357 km2)|
|• Land||4,849 sq mi (12,559 km2)|
|• Water||698 sq mi (1,809 km2) 12.6%|
|• Length||70 mi (113 km)|
|• Width||110 mi (177 km)|
|Elevation||500 ft (150 m)|
|Highest elevation||2,379 ft (725 m)|
|Lowest elevation||0 ft (0 m)|
|• Density||739/sq mi (285/km2)|
|• Density rank||4th|
|• Median household income||$79,900|
|• Income rank||6th|
|• Official language||None|
|Time zone||UTC−05:00 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−04:00 (EDT)|
|ISO 3166 code||US-CT|
|Latitude||40°58′ N to 42°03′ N|
|Longitude||71°47′ W to 73°44′ W|
Connecticut is the southernmost state in the New England region of the United States. As of the 2010 census, it has the highest per-capita income, second-highest level of human development behind Massachusetts, and highest median household income in the United States. It is bordered by Rhode Island to the east, Massachusetts to the north, New York to the west, and Long Island Sound to the south. Its capital is Hartford and its most populous city is Bridgeport. Historically the state is part of New England as well as the tri-state area with New York and New Jersey, which together make up metropolitan New York City. The state is named for the Connecticut River which approximately bisects the state. The word "Connecticut" is derived from various anglicized spellings of "Quononoquett" (Conanicut), a Mohegan-Pequot word for "long tidal river".
Connecticut's first European settlers were Dutchmen who established a small, short-lived settlement called Fort Hoop in Hartford at the confluence of the Park and Connecticut Rivers. Half of Connecticut was initially claimed by the Dutch colony New Netherland, which included much of the land between the Connecticut and Delaware Rivers, although the first major settlements were established in the 1630s by the English. Thomas Hooker led a band of followers from the Massachusetts Bay Colony and founded the Connecticut Colony; other settlers from Massachusetts founded the Saybrook Colony and the New Haven Colony. The Connecticut and New Haven colonies established documents of Fundamental Orders, considered the first constitutions in America. In 1662, the three colonies were merged under a royal charter, making Connecticut a crown colony. Connecticut was one of the Thirteen Colonies which rejected British rule in the American Revolution.
Connecticut is the third smallest state by area, the 29th most populous, and the fourth most densely populated of the fifty states. It is known as the "Constitution State", the "Nutmeg State", the "Provisions State", and the "Land of Steady Habits". It was influential in the development of the federal government of the United States (see Connecticut Compromise). The Connecticut River, Thames River, and ports along Long Island Sound have given Connecticut a strong maritime tradition which continues today. The state also has a long history of hosting the financial services industry, including insurance companies in Hartford County and hedge funds in Fairfield County.
- Etymology and symbols
- Local government
- Notable people
- Images for kids
- See also
Etymology and symbols
|Connecticut state symbols|
|Tree||Charter Oak, a white oak|
|Ship||USS Nautilus (SSN-571), Freedom Schooner Amistad|
|Slogan||Full of Surprises|
|Tartan||Connecticut State Tartan|
|State route marker|
Released in 1999
|Lists of United States state symbols|
The name "Connecticut" originated with the Mohegan word quonehtacut, meaning "place of long tidal river". Connecticut's official nickname is "The Constitution State". Connecticut is also unofficially known as "The Nutmeg State," whose origin is unknown. George Washington gave Connecticut the title of "The Provisions State" because of the material aid that the state rendered to the American Revolutionary War effort. Connecticut is also known as "The Land of Steady Habits".
According to Webster's New International Dictionary (1993), a person who is a native or resident of Connecticut is a "Connecticuter". Commemorative stamps issued by the United States Postal Service with Connecticut themes include Nathan Hale, Eugene O'Neill, Josiah Willard Gibbs, Noah Webster, Eli Whitney, the whaling ship the Charles W. Morgan which is docked at Mystic Seaport, and a decoy of a broadbill duck.
Connecticut is bordered on the south by Long Island Sound, on the west by New York, on the north by Massachusetts, and on the east by Rhode Island. The state capital and third largest city is Hartford, and other major cities and towns (by population) include Bridgeport, New Haven, Stamford, Waterbury, Norwalk, Danbury, New Britain, Greenwich, and Bristol. Connecticut is slightly larger than the country of Montenegro. There are 169 incorporated towns in Connecticut.
The highest peak in Connecticut is Bear Mountain in Salisbury in the northwest corner of the state. The highest point is just east of where Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York meet (42° 3' N; 73° 29' W), on the southern slope of Mount Frissell, whose peak lies nearby in Massachusetts. At the opposite extreme, many of the coastal towns have areas that are less than 20 feet above sea level.
The Connecticut River cuts through the center of the state, flowing into Long Island Sound. The most populous metropolitan region centered within the state lies in the Connecticut River Valley. Despite Connecticut's relatively small size, it features wide regional variations in its landscape; for example, in the northwestern Litchfield Hills, it features rolling mountains and horse farms, whereas in areas to the east of New Haven along the coast, the landscape features coastal marshes, beaches, and large scale maritime activities.
Connecticut's rural areas and small towns in the northeast and northwest corners of the state contrast sharply with its industrial cities such as Stamford, Bridgeport, and New Haven, located along the coastal highways from the New York border to New London, then northward up the Connecticut River to Hartford.
Areas maintained by the National Park Service include Appalachian National Scenic Trail, Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor, and Weir Farm National Historic Site.
Much of Connecticut has a humid continental climate, with cold winters and hot, humid summers. Far southern and coastal Connecticut has a humid temperate climate (also called subtropical in some climate classifications), with hot, and humid summers and cool to cold winters with a mix of rain and snow. Most of Connecticut sees a fairly even precipitation pattern with rainfall/snowfall spread throughout the 12 months.
Thunderstorms are most frequent during the summer, occurring on average 30 times annually. These storms can be severe, and the state usually averages one tornado per year. During hurricane season, tropical cyclones occasionally affect the region.
Winters are generally moderately cold from south to north in Connecticut, with average January temperatures ranging from 38 °F (3 °C) in the coastal lowlands to 29 °F (−2 °C) in the inland and northern portions on the state.
Like other states on the East Coast, Connecticut has a rich and diverse amount of trees and plants.
Forests consist of a mix of Northeastern coastal forests of Oak in southern areas of the state, to the upland New England-Acadian forests in the northwestern parts of the state. Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia) is the state flower, and is native to low ridges in several parts of Connecticut.
Rosebay Rhododendron (Rhododendron maximum) is also native to eastern uplands of Connecticut and Pachaug State Forest is home to the Rhododendron Sanctuary Trail, which contains some of the largest wild Rhododendrons found in the United States. Atlantic white cedar (Chamaecyparis thyoides), is found in wetlands in the southern parts of the state. Connecticut has one native cactus (Opuntia humifusa), found in sandy coastal areas and low hillsides. Several types of beach grasses and wildflowers are also native to Connecticut.
The first European explorer in Connecticut was Dutch explorer Adriaen Block. After he explored this region in 1614, Dutch fur traders sailed up the Connecticut River (then known by the Dutch as Versche Rivier, "Fresh River") and built a fort at Dutch Point in present-day Hartford, which they called "House of Hope" (Dutch: Huis van Hoop).
The name "Connecticut" comes from the Mohegan Indian word "Quinnehtukqut". It means "Long River Place" or "Beside the Long Tidal River." The first explorer from Europe to come to Connecticut was Adriaen Block, from the Netherlands. After he explored this region in 1614, Dutch fur traders sailed up the Connecticut River (Named Versche Rivier by the Dutch) and built a fort near present-day Hartford, which they called "House of Hope" (Dutch: Huys de Hoop).
The first English settlers came in 1633. They were Puritans from Massachusetts, who were led by the Reverend Thomas Hooker. They founded the Connecticut Colony. Colonies were also established at Old Saybrook and New Haven, which later became part of Connecticut. Historically important colonial settlements included: Windsor (1633), Wethersfield (1634), Saybrook (1635), Hartford (1636), New Haven (1638), and New London (1646).
Because the Dutch were outnumbered by the English settlers, they left their fort in 1654. Connecticut's first constitution, the "Fundamental Orders," was adopted on January 14, 1639, while its current constitution, the third for Connecticut, was adopted in 1965. Connecticut is the fifth of the original thirteen states.
The western boundaries of Connecticut have been subject to change over time. According to a 1650 agreement with the Dutch, the western boundary of Connecticut ran north from the west side of Greenwich Bay "provided the said line come not within 10 miles [16 km] of Hudson River." On the other hand, Connecticut's original Charter in 1662 granted it all the land to the "South Sea," i.e. the Pacific Ocean. This probably added confusion to the early forefathers because the Pacific Ocean is located on the west coast of the United States. Agreements with New York, the "Pennamite Wars" with Pennsylvania over Westmoreland County, followed by Congressional intervention, and the relinquishment and sale of the Western Reserve lands brought the state to its present boundaries.
In the summer and fall of 2016, Connecticut experienced a drought in many parts of the state, causing some water-use bans. This affected the agricultural economy in the state.
Tropical Storm Irene made landfall in Connecticut in August 2011.
Category 1 Hurricane Sandy made landfall in Connecticut in October 2012, causing heavy destruction.
As of the 2020 United States census, Connecticut has a population of 3,605,944, an increase of 31,847 people (0.9%) from the 2010 United States census. Among the census records, 20.4% of the population was under 18.
In 1790, 97% of the population in Connecticut was classified as "rural". The first census in which less than half the population was classified as rural was 1890. In the 2000 census, only 12.3% was considered rural. Most of western and southern Connecticut (particularly the Gold Coast) is strongly associated with New York City; this area is the most affluent and populous region of the state and has high property costs and high incomes. The center of population of Connecticut is located in the town of Cheshire.
|Race and ethnicity||Alone||Total|
|Hispanic or Latino||—||17.3%|
|African American (non-Hispanic)||10.0%||11.4%|
|Native Hawaiian and
other Pacific Islander
|Two or more races||–||2.2%||2.6%|
In common with the majority of the United States, non-Hispanic whites have remained the dominant racial and ethnic group in Connecticut. From being 98% of the population in 1940, however, they have declined to 63% of the population as of the 2020 census. These statistics have represented less Americans identifying as non-Hispanic white, which has given rise to the Hispanic and Latino American population and Asian American population overall. As of 2011[update], 46.1% of Connecticut's population younger than age 1 were minorities. As of 2004, 11.4% of the population (400,000) was foreign-born. In 1870, native-born Americans had accounted for 75% of the state's population, but that had dropped to 35% by 1918. Also as of 2000, 81.69% of Connecticut residents age 5 and older spoke English at home and 8.42% spoke Spanish, followed by Italian at 1.59%, French at 1.31%, and Polish at 1.20%.
The largest ancestry groups since 2010 were:
- 19.3% Italian
- 17.9% Irish
- 10.7% English
- 10.4% German
- 8.6% Polish
- 6.6% French
- 3.0% French Canadian
- 2.7% American
- 2.0% Scottish
- 1.4% Scotch Irish
A Pew survey of Connecticut residents' religious self-identification showed the following distribution of affiliations: Protestant 35%, Mormonism 1%, Jewish 3%, Roman Catholic 33%, Orthodox 1%, Non-religious 28%, Jehovah's Witness 1%, Hinduism 1%, Buddhism 1% and Islam 1%. Jewish congregations had 108,280 (3.2%) members in 2000. The Jewish population is concentrated in the towns near Long Island Sound between Greenwich and New Haven, in Greater New Haven and in Greater Hartford, especially the suburb of West Hartford. According to the Association of Religion Data Archives, the largest Christian denominations, by number of adherents, in 2010 were: the Catholic Church, with 1,252,936; the United Church of Christ, with 96,506; and non-denominational Evangelical Protestants, with 72,863.
Recent immigration has brought other non-Christian religions to the state, but the numbers of adherents of other religions are still low. Connecticut is also home to New England's largest Protestant Church: The First Cathedral in Bloomfield, Connecticut, located in Hartford County. Hartford is seat to the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford, which is sovereign over the Diocese of Bridgeport and the Diocese of Norwich.
Largest cities and towns
Largest cities or towns in Connecticut
Finance and insurance is Connecticut's largest industry. Manufacturing is the third biggest industry at 11.9% of GDP and dominated by Hartford-based United Technologies Corporation (UTC), which employs more than 22,000 people in Connecticut. Lockheed Martin subsidiary Sikorsky Aircraft operates Connecticut's single largest manufacturing plant in Stratford, where it makes helicopters. Other UTC divisions include UTC Propulsion and Aerospace Systems, including jet engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney and UTC Building and Industrial Systems.
Connecticut used to be a center of gun manufacturing.
Connecticut's agricultural sector employed about 12,000 people as of 2010, with more than a quarter of that number involved in nursery stock production. Other agricultural products include dairy products and eggs, tobacco, fish and shellfish, and fruit.
Oyster harvesting was historically an important source of income to towns along the Connecticut coastline. In the 19th century, oystering boomed in New Haven, Bridgeport, and Norwalk and achieved modest success in neighboring towns. In 1911, Connecticut's oyster production reached its peak at nearly 25 million pounds of oyster meats. This was, at the time, higher than production in New York, Rhode Island, or Massachusetts. During this time, the Connecticut coast was known in the shellfishing industry as the oyster capital of the world. From before World War 1 until 1969, Connecticut laws restricted the right to harvest oysters in state-owned beds to sailing vessels. These laws prompted the construction of the oyster sloop style vessel that lasted well into the 20th century. The sloop Hope is believed to be the last oyster sloop built in Connecticut, completed in Greenwich in 1948. The Milford Oyster Festival, sometimes shortened to "Oysterfest," is an annual cultural festival held on the third Saturday of August throughout the city of Milford, Connecticut.
The Interstate highways in the state are Interstate 95 (I-95) traveling southwest to northeast along the coast, I-84 traveling southwest to northeast in the center of the state, I-91 traveling north to south in the center of the state, and I-395 traveling north to south near the eastern border of the state. The other major highways in Connecticut are the Merritt Parkway and Wilbur Cross Parkway, which together form Connecticut Route 15 (Route 15), traveling from the Hutchinson River Parkway in New York parallel to I-95 before turning north of New Haven and traveling parallel to I-91, finally becoming a surface road in Berlin. I-95 and Route 15 were originally toll roads; they relied on a system of toll plazas at which all traffic stopped and paid fixed tolls. A series of major crashes at these plazas eventually contributed to the decision to remove the tolls in 1988. Other major arteries in the state include U.S. Route 7 (US 7) in the west traveling parallel to the New York state line, Route 8 farther east near the industrial city of Waterbury and traveling north–south along the Naugatuck River Valley nearly parallel with US 7, and Route 9 in the east.
Between New Haven and New York City, I-95 is one of the most congested highways in the United States. Although I-95 has been widened in several spots, some areas are only three lanes and this strains traffic capacity, resulting in frequent and lengthy rush hour delays. Frequently, the congestion spills over to clog the parallel Merritt Parkway and even US 1. The state has encouraged traffic reduction schemes, including rail use and ride-sharing.
Connecticut also has a very active bicycling community, with one of the highest rates of bicycle ownership and use in the United States, particularly in New Haven. According to the U.S. Census 2006 American Community Survey, New Haven has the highest percentage of commuters who bicycle to work of any major metropolitan center on the East Coast.
Rail is a popular travel mode between New Haven and New York City's Grand Central Terminal. Southwestern Connecticut is served by the Metro-North Railroad's New Haven Line, operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Metro-North provides commuter service between New York City and New Haven, with branches to New Canaan, Danbury, and Waterbury. Connecticut lies along Amtrak's Northeast Corridor, which features frequent Northeast Regional and Acela Express service from New Haven south to New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, DC, and Norfolk, VA, as well as north to New London, Providence and Boston. Since 1990, coastal cities and towns between New Haven and New London are also served by the Shore Line East commuter line.
In June 2018, a commuter rail service called the Hartford Line began operating between New Haven and Springfield on Amtrak's New Haven-Springfield Line. Hartford Line service is provided by both Amtrak and the Connecticut Department of Transportation's CT Rail, and in addition to its termini serves New Haven State Street, Wallingford, Meriden, Berlin, Hartford, Windsor, and Windsor Locks. Several infill stations are planned to be added in the near future as of 2021. Amtrak's Vermonter runs from Washington to St. Albans, Vermont via the same line. In July 2019, Amtrak launched the Valley Flyer, which runs between New Haven and Greenfield, Massachusetts.
A proposed commuter rail service, the Central Corridor Rail Line, would connect New London with Norwich, Willimantic, Storrs, and Stafford Springs, with service continuing into Massachusetts and Brattleboro, Vermont.
Statewide bus service is supplied by Connecticut Transit, owned by the Connecticut Department of Transportation, with smaller municipal authorities providing local service. Bus networks are an important part of the transportation system in Connecticut, especially in urban areas like Hartford, Stamford, Norwalk, Bridgeport and New Haven. Connecticut Transit also operates CTfastrak, a bus rapid transit service between New Britain and Hartford. The bus route opened to the public on March 28, 2015.
Connecticut's largest airport is Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, 15 miles (24 km) north of Hartford. Many residents of central and southern Connecticut also make heavy use of JFK International Airport and Newark International Airports, especially for international travel. Smaller regional air service is provided at Tweed New Haven Regional Airport. Larger civil airports include Danbury Municipal Airport and Waterbury-Oxford Airport in western Connecticut, Hartford–Brainard Airport in central Connecticut, and Groton-New London Airport in eastern Connecticut. Sikorsky Memorial Airport is located in Stratford and mostly services cargo, helicopter and private aviation.
Several ferry services cross Long Island Sound and connect the state to Long Island. The Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Ferry travels between Bridgeport, Connecticut and Port Jefferson, New York. Ferry service also operates out of New London to Orient, New York; Fishers Island, New York; and Block Island, Rhode Island, which are popular tourist destinations. Two ferries cross the Connecticut River: the Rocky Hill–Glastonbury ferry and the Chester–Hadlyme ferry, the former of which is the oldest continuously operating ferry in the United States, operating since 1655.
Connecticut's economic output in 2019 as measured by gross domestic product was $289 billion, up from $277.9 billion in 2018.
Connecticut's per capita personal income in 2019 was estimated at $79,087, the highest of any state. There is, however, a great disparity in incomes throughout the state; after New York, Connecticut had the second largest gap nationwide between the average incomes of the top 1% and the average incomes of the bottom 99%. According to a 2018 study by Phoenix Marketing International, Connecticut had the third-largest number of millionaires per capita in the United States, with a ratio of 7.75%. New Canaan is the wealthiest town in Connecticut, with a per capita income of $85,459. Hartford is the poorest municipality in Connecticut, with a per capita income of $13,428 in 2000.
As of December 2019, Connecticut's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.8%, with U.S. unemployment at 3.5% that month. Dating back to 1982, Connecticut recorded its lowest unemployment in 2000 between August and October, at 2.2%. The highest unemployment rate during that period occurred in November and December 2010 at 9.3%, but economists expect record new levels of layoffs as a result of business closures in the spring of 2020 as the result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Tax is collected by the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services and by local municipalities.
As of 2012, Connecticut residents had the second highest rate in the nation of combined state and local taxes after New York, at 12.6% of income compared to the national average of 9.9% as reported by the Tax Foundation.
Before 1991, Connecticut had an investment-only income tax system. Income from employment was untaxed, but income from investments was taxed at 13%, the highest rate in the U.S., with no deductions allowed for costs of producing the investment income, such as interest on borrowing.
In 1991, under Governor Lowell P. Weicker Jr., an independent, the system was changed to one in which the taxes on employment income and investment income were equalized at a maximum rate of 4%. The new tax policy drew investment firms to Connecticut; as of 2019[update], Fairfield County was home to the headquarters for 16 of the 200 largest hedge funds in the world.
As of 2019[update], the income tax rates on Connecticut individuals were divided into seven tax brackets of 3% (on income up to $10,000); 5% ($10,000-$50,000); 5.5% ($50,000-$100,000); 6% ($100,000-$200,000); 6.5% ($200,000-$250,000); 6.9% ($250,000-$500,000); and 6.99% above $500,000, with additional amounts owed depending on the bracket.
All wages of Connecticut residents are subject to the state's income tax, even if earned outside the state. However, in those cases, Connecticut income tax must be withheld only to the extent the Connecticut tax exceeds the amount withheld by the other jurisdiction. Since New York has higher income tax rates than Connecticut, this effectively means that Connecticut residents who work in New York have no Connecticut income tax withheld. Connecticut permits a credit for taxes paid to other jurisdictions, but since residents who work in other states are still subject to Connecticut income taxation, they may owe taxes if the jurisdictional credit does not fully offset the Connecticut tax amount.
Connecticut levies a 6.35% state sales tax on the retail sale, lease, or rental of most goods. Some items and services in general are not subject to sales and use taxes unless specifically enumerated as taxable by statute. A provision excluding clothing under $50 from sales tax was repealed as of July 1, 2011[update]. There are no additional sales taxes imposed by local jurisdictions. In 2001, Connecticut instituted what became an annual sales tax "holiday" each August lasting one week, when retailers do not have to remit sales tax on certain items and quantities of clothing that has varied from year to year.
State law authorizes municipalities to tax property, including real estate, vehicles and other personal property, with state statute providing varying exemptions, credits and abatements. All assessments are at 70% of fair market value. The maximum property tax credit is $200 per return and any excess may not be refunded or carried forward. According to the Tax Foundation, on a per capita basis in the 2017 fiscal year Connecticut residents paid the 3rd highest average property taxes in the nation after New Hampshire and New Jersey.
As of January 1, 2020[update], gasoline taxes and fees in Connecticut were 40.13 cents per gallon, 11th highest in the United States which had a nationwide average of 36.13 cents a gallon excluding federal taxes. Diesel taxes and fees as of January 2020 in Connecticut were 46.50 cents per gallon, ninth highest nationally with the U.S. average at 37.91 cents.
In 2019, sales of single-family homes in Connecticut totaled 33,146 units, a 2.1 percent decline from the 2018 transaction total. The median home sold in 2019 recorded a transaction amount of $260,000, up 0.4 percent from 2018.
Connecticut had the seventh highest rate of home foreclosure activity in the country in 2019 at 0.53 percent of the total housing stock.
Finance, insurance and real estate was Connecticut's largest industry in 2018 as ranked by gross domestic product, generating $75.7 billion in GDP that year. Major financial industry employers include The Hartford, Travelers, Cigna, the Aetna subsidiary of CVS Health, Mass Mutual, People's United Financial, Bank of America, Realogy, Bridgewater Associates, GE Capital, William Raveis Real Estate, and Berkshire Hathaway through reinsurance and residential real estate subsidiaries.
The combined educational, health and social services sector was the largest single industry as ranked by employment, with a combined workforce of 342,600 people at the end of 2019, ranking fourth the year before in GDP at $28.3 billion.
The broad business and professional services sector had the second highest GDP total in Connecticut in 2018 at an estimated $33.7 billion.
Manufacturing was the third biggest industry in 2018 with GDP of $30.8 billion, dominated by Raytheon Technologies formed in the March 2020 merger of Hartford-based United Technologies and Waltham, Mass.-based Raytheon Co. As of the merger, Raytheon Technologies employed about 19,000 people in Connecticut through subsidiaries Pratt & Whitney and Collins Aerospace. Lockheed Martin subsidiary Sikorsky Aircraft operates Connecticut's single largest manufacturing plant in Stratford, where it makes helicopters.
Other major manufacturers include the Electric Boat division of General Dynamics, which makes submarines in Groton, Boehringer Ingelheim, a pharmaceuticals manufacturer with its U.S. headquarters in Ridgefield, and ASML, which in Wilton makes precision lithography machines used to create circuitry on semiconductors and flat-screen displays.
Connecticut historically was a center of gun manufacturing, and four gun-manufacturing firms continued to operate in the state as of December 2012[update], employing 2,000 people: Colt, Stag, Ruger, and Mossberg. Marlin, owned by Remington, closed in April 2011.
Other large components of the Connecticut economy in 2018 included wholesale trade ($18.1 billion in GDP); information services ($13.8 billion); retail ($13.7 billion); arts, entertainment and food services ($9.1 billion); and construction ($8.3 billion).
Tourists spent $9.3 billion in Connecticut in 2017 according to estimates as part of a series of studies commissioned by the state of Connecticut. Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun are the two biggest tourist draws and number among the state's largest employers; both are located on Native American reservations in the eastern part of Connecticut.
Connecticut's agricultural production totaled $580 million in 2017, with just over half of that revenue the result of nursery stock production. Milk production totaled $81 million that year, with other major product categories including eggs, vegetables and fruit, tobacco and shellfish.
Connecticut's economy uses less energy to produce each dollar of GDP than all other states except California, Massachusetts, and New York. It uses less energy on a per-capita basis than all but six other states. It has no fossil-fuel resources, but does have renewable resources. Average retail electricity prices are the highest among the 48 contiguous states. While the vast majority of state's overall energy consumption is fossil fuels, nuclear power delivered over 40% of state's electricity generation in 2019. Refuse-derived fuels and other biomass provided the largest share of renewable electricity at about a 3% share. Solar and wind generation have grown in recent years. More than three-quarters of solar generation came from distributed small-scale installations such as rooftop solar in 2019, and there is planning underway to significantly increase renewable generation with the state's offshore wind resource.
Connecticut does not have county government, unlike all other states except Rhode Island. Connecticut county governments were mostly eliminated in 1960, with the exception of sheriffs elected in each county. In 2000, the county sheriff was abolished and replaced with the state marshal system, which has districts that follow the old county territories. The judicial system is divided into judicial districts at the trial-court level which largely follow the old county lines. The eight counties are still widely used for purely geographical and statistical purposes, such as weather reports and census reporting.
The state is divided into nine regional councils of government defined by the state Office of Planning and Management, which facilitate regional planning and coordination of services between member towns. The Intragovernmental Policy Division of this Office coordinates regional planning with the administrative bodies of these regions. Each region has an administrative body made up chief executive officers of the member towns. The regions are established for the purpose of planning "coordination of regional and state planning activities; redesignation of logical planning regions and promotion of the continuation of regional planning organizations within the state; and provision for technical aid and the administration of financial assistance to regional planning organizations". By 2015, the State of Connecticut recognized COGs as county equivalents, allowing them to apply for funding and grants made available to county governments in other states. In 2019 the state recommended to the United States Census Bureau that the nine Councils of Governments replace its counties for statistical purposes. This proposal was approved by the Census Bureau in 2022, and will be fully implemented by 2024.
Connecticut shares with the rest of New England a governmental institution called the New England town. The state is divided into 169 towns which serve as the fundamental political jurisdictions. There are also 21 cities, most of which simply follow the boundaries of their namesake towns and have a merged city-town government. There are two exceptions: the City of Groton, which is a subsection of the Town of Groton, and the City of Winsted in the Town of Winchester. There are also nine incorporated boroughs which may provide additional services to a section of town. Naugatuck is a consolidated town and borough.
There are two Connecticut teams in the American Hockey League. The Bridgeport Islanders is a farm team for the New York Islanders which competes at the Total Mortgage Arena in Bridgeport. The Hartford Wolf Pack is the affiliate of the New York Rangers; they play in the XL Center in Hartford.
The Hartford Yard Goats of the Double-A Northeast are a AA affiliate of the Colorado Rockies. Also, the Norwich Sea Unicorns play in the Futures Collegiate Baseball League. The New Britain Bees play in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball. The Connecticut Sun of the WNBA currently play at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville. In soccer, Hartford Athletic began play in the USL Championship in 2019.
The state hosts several major sporting events. Since 1952, a PGA Tour golf tournament has been played in the Hartford area. It was originally called the "Insurance City Open" and later the "Greater Hartford Open" and is now known as the Travelers Championship.
Lime Rock Park in Salisbury is a 1.5-mile (2.4 km) road racing course, home to the International Motor Sports Association, SCCA, United States Auto Club, and K&N Pro Series East races. Thompson International Speedway, Stafford Motor Speedway, and Waterford Speedbowl are oval tracks holding weekly races for NASCAR Modifieds and other classes, including the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour. The state also hosts several major mixed martial arts events for Bellator MMA and the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Professional sports teams
The Hartford Whalers of the National Hockey League played in Hartford from 1975 to 1997 at the Hartford Civic Center. They departed to Raleigh, North Carolina, after disputes with the state over the construction of a new arena, and they are now known as the Carolina Hurricanes. In 1926, Hartford had a franchise in the National Football League known as the Hartford Blues. They joined the National League for one season in 1876, making them the state's only Major League baseball franchise before moving to Brooklyn, New York, and then disbanding one season later. From 2000 until 2006 the city was home to the Hartford FoxForce of World TeamTennis.
|Bridgeport Islanders||Ice hockey||American Hockey League|
|Hartford Wolf Pack||Ice hockey||American Hockey League|
|Connecticut Whale||Ice hockey||Premier Hockey Federation|
|Hartford Yard Goats||Baseball||Double-A Northeast|
|Norwich Sea Unicorns||Baseball||Futures Collegiate Baseball League|
|New Britain Bees||Baseball||Futures Collegiate Baseball League|
|Connecticut Sun||Basketball||Women's National Basketball Association|
|Hartford Athletic||Soccer||USL Championship|
|AC Connecticut||Soccer||USL League Two|
The Connecticut Huskies are the team of the University of Connecticut (UConn); they play NCAA Division I sports. Both the men's basketball and women's basketball teams have won multiple national championships. In 2004, UConn became the first school in NCAA Division I history to have its men's and women's basketball programs win the national title in the same year; they repeated the feat in 2014 and are still the only Division I school to win both titles in the same year. The UConn women's basketball team holds the record for the longest consecutive winning streak in NCAA college basketball at 111 games, a streak that ended in 2017. The UConn Huskies football team has played in the Football Bowl Subdivision since 2002, and has played in four bowl games.
New Haven biennially hosts "The Game" between the Yale Bulldogs and the Harvard Crimson, the country's second-oldest college football rivalry. Yale alumnus Walter Camp is deemed the "Father of American Football", and he helped develop modern football while living in New Haven. Other Connecticut universities which feature Division I sports teams are Quinnipiac University, Fairfield University, Central Connecticut State University, Sacred Heart University, and the University of Hartford.
The Constitution State Rivalry is an in-state college football rivalry between Sacred Heart University and Central Connecticut State University. Both teams compete at the NCAA Division 1 Football Championship Subdivision level in the Northeast Conference. Since 1998, the game has been played annually with the location of the matchup determined on a yearly basis.
Connecticut ranked third in the nation for educational performance, according to Education Week's Quality Counts 2018 report. It earned an overall score of 83.5 out of 100 points. On average, the country received a score of 75.2. Connecticut posted a B-plus in the Chance-for-Success category, ranking fourth on factors that contribute to a person's success both within and outside the K-12 education system. Connecticut received a mark of B-plus and finished fourth for School Finance. It ranked 12th with a grade of C on the K-12 Achievement Index.
Hartford Public High School (1638) is the third-oldest secondary school in the nation after the Collegiate School (1628) in Manhattan and the Boston Latin School (1635). Today, the Connecticut State Board of Education manages the public school system for children in grades K–12. Board of Education members are appointed by the Governor of Connecticut.
Connecticut has a number of private schools. Private schools may file for approval by the state Department of Education, but are not required to. Per state law, private schools must file yearly attendance reports with the state.
Notable private schools include The Taft School, Choate Rosemary Hall, and the Kent School.
Colleges and universities
Connecticut was home to the nation's first law school, Litchfield Law School, which operated from 1773 to 1833 in Litchfield. Well known universities in the state include Yale University, Trinity College, Sacred Heart University, Fairfield University, Quinnipiac University, and the University of Connecticut. The Connecticut State University System includes 4 state universities, and the state also has 12 community colleges. The United States Coast Guard Academy is located in New London.
- George H. W. Bush, the 41st president of the United States, grew up in Greenwich.
- George W. Bush, the 43rd president of the United States, was born in New Haven.
- Charles Dow, founder of The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones & Company.
- Josiah Willard Gibbs was an American scientist who made important theoretical contributions to physics, chemistry, and mathematics.
- Katharine Hepburn, named by the American Film Institute as the greatest female star in Hollywood history.
- Norman Lear, television sitcom creator and producer and writer, was born in Hartford, well known for creating The Jeffersons, Maude, Good Times, One Day at a Time, Checking In, Sanford and Son and more.
- Seth MacFarlane, a cartoonist, well known for creating Family Guy, American Dad, Cleveland Show, and the TED series.
- J. P. Morgan, financier and philanthropist who dominated a period of industrial consolidation and intervened in multiple economic panics during his time.
- Ralph Nader, torts lawyer, author, founder of the American Museum of Tort Law, and 2000 independent candidate for President of the United States.
- Jackie Robinson, who broke baseball's "color line", contributing significantly to the civil rights movement.
- Roger Sherman, a Founding Father who was the only person to sign all four great state papers of the United States: the Continental Association, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution.
- Igor Sikorsky, who created and flew the first practical helicopter.
- Harriet Beecher Stowe, whose novel Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852) energized anti-slavery forces in the American North.
- Meryl Streep, who holds the record for the most Academy Awards nominations for acting.
- Mark Twain resided in his innovative Hartford home from 1871 until 1891, during which time he published The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. He lived in Redding from 1908 until his death in 1910.
- Noah Webster was born in Hartford in an area that is now part of West Hartford and was the author of the Blue Backed Speller, now known as Webster's Dictionary. The Speller was used to teach spelling to five generations of Americans.
- Eli Whitney, best known for inventing the cotton gin which shaped the economy of the Antebellum South, and promoting the design of interchangeable parts in production, a major development leading to the Industrial Revolution.
Images for kids
Köppen climate types of Connecticut, using 1991–2020 climate normals.
In Spanish: Connecticut para niños
Connecticut Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.