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Norfolk, Connecticut
Norfolk, Connecticut.jpg
Official seal of Norfolk, Connecticut
Location in Litchfield County, Connecticut
Location in Litchfield County, Connecticut
Coordinates: 41°59′01″N 73°11′47″W / 41.98361°N 73.19639°W / 41.98361; -73.19639Coordinates: 41°59′01″N 73°11′47″W / 41.98361°N 73.19639°W / 41.98361; -73.19639
Country  United States
U.S. state  Connecticut
County Litchfield
Region Northwest Hills
Incorporated 1758
 • Type Selectman-town meeting
 • Total 46.4 sq mi (120.2 km2)
 • Land 45.3 sq mi (117.4 km2)
 • Water 1.1 sq mi (2.9 km2)
1,230 ft (375 m)
 • Total 1,709
 • Density 38/sq mi (14.6/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 860
FIPS code 09-53470
GNIS feature ID 0213476

Norfolk is a town in Litchfield County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 1,709 at the 2010 census. The urban center of the town is the Norfolk census-designated place, with a population of 553 at the 2010 census.

Norfolk is perhaps best known as the site of the Yale Summer School of Music – Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, which hosts an annual chamber music concert series in "the Music Shed", a performance hall located on the Ellen Battell Stoeckel estate to the west of the village green. Norfolk has important examples of regional architecture, notably the Village Hall (now Infinity Hall, a shingled 1880s Arts-and-Crafts confection, with an opera house upstairs and storefronts at street level); the Norfolk Library (a shingle-style structure, designed by George Keller, ca 1888/1889); and over thirty buildings, in a wide variety of styles, designed by Alfredo S. G. Taylor (of the New York firm Taylor & Levi) in the four decades before the Second World War.


Norfolk was first settled in 1744 and incorporated in 1758, later than most surrounding towns because of the dense woods, rocky soil and high elevation. Originally a farming community, nineteenth-century Norfolk saw the rise of numerous small factories, many of which fabricated tools and farming implements from local iron ore, and mills, which took advantage of fast-flowing mountain streams.

By the late 19th century, however, rail connections to New York, Hartford, Pittsburgh and Boston gave visitors ready access to Norfolk's cool summers and clean air, and Norfolk soon evolved into a fashionable resort as its small industry declined. The town has ever since had a bustling "summer colony." Like several other towns in the Litchfield Hills, Norfolk has, in more recent years, developed a sizable population of "weekenders" from New York City and environs.

The town of Norfolk celebrated its semiquincentennial (250th anniversary) on August 1–2, 2008.


Norfolk in 1897

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 46.4 square miles (120 km2), of which, 45.3 square miles (117 km2) of it is land and 1.1 square miles (2.8 km2) of it (2.37%) is water. The town is located in the Litchfield Hills portion of the Appalachian mountain range. Norfolk's elevation is 1,230 feet above sea level, and the town is sometimes called "the Icebox of Connecticut" for its severe winters and particularly cool summers.

The town is bordered on the west by Canaan, Connecticut and North Canaan, Connecticut; on the north by New Marlborough, Massachusetts and Sandisfield, Massachusetts; on the east by Colebrook, Connecticut and Winchester, Connecticut; and on the south by Goshen, Connecticut.

Principal communities

  • Norfolk Center
  • North Norfolk
  • South Norfolk
  • West Norfolk

State parks

Norfolk is home to three state parks: Dennis Hill State Park, which includes the remnants of a lavish summer pavilion designed by Alfredo Taylor; Haystack Mountain State Park, with a stone tower at the mountain's summit; and Campbell Falls State Park Reserve, with an approximately 100-foot (30 m) natural waterfall.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1820 1,422
1850 1,643
1860 1,803 9.7%
1870 1,641 −9.0%
1880 1,418 −13.6%
1890 1,546 9.0%
1900 1,614 4.4%
1910 1,541 −4.5%
1920 1,229 −20.2%
1930 1,298 5.6%
1940 1,333 2.7%
1950 1,572 17.9%
1960 1,827 16.2%
1970 2,073 13.5%
1980 2,156 4.0%
1990 2,060 −4.5%
2000 1,660 −19.4%
2010 1,709 3.0%
2014 (est.) 1,655 −3.2%
U.S. Decennial Census
See also: List of Connecticut locations by per capita income

As of the census of 2000, there were 1,660 people, 676 households, and 461 families residing in the town. The population density was 36.6 people per square mile (14.1/km2). There were 871 housing units at an average density of 19.2 per square mile (7.4/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 97.11% White, 0.48% African American, 0.24% Native American, 0.54% Asian, 0.60% from other races, and 1.02% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.96% of the population.

There were 676 households, out of which 28.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.3% were married couples living together, 6.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.7% were non-families. 24.6% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.44 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 23.7% under the age of 18, 4.3% from 18 to 24, 29.2% from 25 to 44, 29.0% from 45 to 64, and 13.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females, there were 96.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.0 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $58,906, and the median income for a family was $67,500. Males had a median income of $41,654 versus $36,442 for females. The per capita income for the town was $34,020. About 1.8% of families and 4.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.3% of those under age 18 and 6.2% of those age 65 or over.


The main thoroughfares of the town are Route 44 (going east-west, and also known as Greenwoods Road) and Route 272 (going north-south, with 272N also known as North Street and 272S also known as Litchfield Road).

Notable locations

LOC 20216v
Norfolk Public Library (1888-89), George Keller, architect.
  • Blackberry River Inn - built in 1763 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Gould House - listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Haystack Mountain Tower - built in 1929 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993.
  • Hillside - listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Infinity Hall - an 1883 opera house and concert hall.
  • Low House - listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Norfolk Library - built in 1888-89, a contributing property in Norfolk Historic District.
  • Rectory and Church of the Immaculate Conception - built in 1924 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.
  • Rockwell House - listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Tom Thumb House - listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • World War I Memorial - listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


This climatic region is typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely cold) winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Norfolk has a humid continental climate, abbreviated "Dfb" on climate maps.

  • A. Havemeyer & R. Dance, Alfredo Taylor in Norfolk (Norfolk: Norfolk Hist. Soc., 2005)
  • A. Havemeyer & R. Dance, The Magnificent Battells (Norfolk: Norfolk Hist. Soc., 2006)
  • T.W. Crissey, History of Norfolk, Litchfield County, Connecticut (Everett, MA: Massachusetts Pub. Co., 1900)
  • A.V. Waldecker [ed.], Norfolk, Connecticut 1900-1975 (Norfolk: Norfolk Bicen. Comm., 1976)


Norfolk is a member of Regional School District 7, which also includes, Barkhamsted, Colebrook, and New Hartford. Public school students attend Botelle Elementary School for grades K-6, Northwestern Middle School for grades 7–8, and Northwestern Regional High School for grades 9-12.

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