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Willington, Connecticut
Willington Common
Willington Common
Official seal of Willington, Connecticut
Seal
Location in Tolland County and the state of Connecticut
Location in Tolland County and the state of Connecticut
Country  United States
U.S. state  Connecticut
County Tolland
Metropolitan area Hartford
Incorporated May 1727
Government
 • Type Selectman-town meeting
Area
 • Total 33.5 sq mi (86.8 km2)
 • Land 33.3 sq mi (86.2 km2)
 • Water 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)
Elevation
761 ft (232 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total 5,566
 • Density 167/sq mi (64.6/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (Eastern)
ZIP Code
06279
Area code(s) 860
FIPS code 09-85950
GNIS feature ID 0213534

Willington is a town in Tolland County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 5,566 at the 2020 census.

The Willimantic River borders the town on the west. Willington is about 25 miles northeast of Hartford on Interstate 84, which also provides a connection to Boston, via the Massachusetts Turnpike. Providence, RI is accessible via U.S. Route 44. Larger communities nearby include Coventry, Stafford, Tolland, and Willimantic. The University of Connecticut is located in adjacent Mansfield. A new public library (formerly located within Hall Memorial School) opened in autumn 2006.

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 33.5 square miles (87 km2), of which 33.3 square miles (86 km2) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) of it (0.63%) is water.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1820 1,246
1850 1,388
1860 1,166 −16.0%
1870 942 −19.2%
1880 1,086 15.3%
1890 906 −16.6%
1900 885 −2.3%
1910 1,112 25.6%
1920 1,200 7.9%
1930 1,213 1.1%
1940 1,233 1.6%
1950 1,462 18.6%
1960 2,005 37.1%
1970 3,755 87.3%
1980 4,694 25.0%
1990 5,979 27.4%
2000 5,959 −0.3%
2010 6,041 1.4%
2020 5,566 −7.9%
U.S. Decennial Census
See also: List of Connecticut locations by per capita income

As of the census of 2000 (a 2010 census is available), there were 5,959 people, 2,353 households, and 1,437 families residing in the town. The population density was 179.1 people per square mile (69.2/km2). There were 2,429 housing units at an average density of 73.0 per square mile (28.2/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 94.06% White, 0.97% African American, 0.12% Native American, 3.02% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 0.62% from other races, and 1.12% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.81% of the population.

There were 2,423 households, of which 24.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.3% were married couples living together, 11.2% were single householders with no spouse present (7.4% female householder, 3.8% male), and 39.5% were non-families. 21.3% of all households were made up of individuals, and 5.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 20.4% under the age of 20, 16.9% from 20 to 24, 21.3% from 25 to 44, 30.7% from 45 to 64, and 4.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38.3 years.

The median income for a household in the town was $51,690, and the median income for a family was $70,684. Males had a median income of $41,250 versus $36,310 for females. The per capita income for the town was $27,062. About 2.9% of families and 13.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.0% of those under age 18 and 3.1% of those age 65 or over.

Popular culture

Willington was featured on the Fox science fiction show Fringe in Season 5, Episode 9 (Black Blotter).

Education

Elementary and middle school-aged residents attend schools in the Willington School District.

All residents are zoned to:

  • Center Elementary School (Kindergarten through 4)
  • Hall Memorial School (Grades 5 through 8)

High school-aged residents attend E. O. Smith High School of the Regional School District 19, as well as an option to attend Windham Technical High School.

Prior to the community's affiliation with Regional School District 19, Willington offered its high school–aged students a choice attending one of the two institutions. Numbers varied from year to year, having the undesired effect of breaking up classes and bussing them distances of up to 15 miles. The two available choices as of 2018 are:

Notable people

  • Roger Wolcott (1679–1767), 28th Governor of the Connecticut Colony (1750–1754), one of the town's founders.
  • Orrin Holt (1792–1855), 1st representative of Connecticut's 6th congressional district; born and died in town.
  • Jared Sparks (1792–1866), historian, Unitarian minister and President of Harvard University. A street named in his honor extends from the town green to Moose Meadow Road.
  • Justus Vinton (1806–1858), a Baptist missionary to Myanmar, was born in town.
  • Elias Loomis (1811–1889), a mathematician and astronomer, was born in town.
  • Philip Corbin (1824–1910), a businessman and founder of P&F Corbin Company, was born in town.
  • Jeremiah Chaplin (1776–1841), a Reformed Baptist theologian who preached in town.
  • William L. Higgins (1867–1951), a US Congressman and doctor who practiced medicine in town.
  • William H. Hall (1869–1922), a president pro tempore of the Connecticut State Senate
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