Brookfield, Connecticut

Infobox Settlement
official_name = Brookfield, Connecticut
settlement_type = Town


imagesize =
image_caption =


mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location in Connecticut
established_title = Incorporated
established_date = 1788
subdivision_type2 =
subdivision_name2 =
government_type = Selectman-town meeting


mapsize1 =
map_caption1 =
subdivision_type = NECTA
subdivision_name = Danbury
subdivision_type1 = Region
subdivision_name1 = Housatonic Valley
leader_title = First selectman
leader_name = Robert Silvaggi
area_magnitude = 1 E8
area_total_km2 = 52.8
area_total_sq_mi = 20.4
area_land_km2 = 51.3
area_water_km2 = 1.6
population_as_of = 2005
population_note =
population_total = 16354
population_metro =
population_density_sq_mi = 826
population_density_km2 = 319
timezone = EST
utc_offset = -5
timezone_DST = EDT
utc_offset_DST = -4
elevation_ft = 459
latd = 41 |latm = 28 |lats = 07 |latNS = N
longd = 73 |longm = 23 |longs = 31 |longEW = W
area_land_sq_mi = 19.8
area_water_sq_mi = 0.6
elevation_m = 140
postal_code_type = ZIP code
postal_code = 06804
website = http://www.brookfield.org/
area_code = 203
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 09-08980
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 0213399
footnotes =

Brookfield is a town located in northern Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 15,664 at the 2000 census. First settled in 1754 with the establishment of the Newbury Parish, which incorporated parts of neighboring Newtown and Danbury, the town of Brookfield was established in 1788. It was named after the first minister of the parish's Congregational church, Reverend Thomas Brooks.

On The National Register of Historic Places

* Brookfield Center Historic District — Long Meadow Hill Rd. (added September 15, 1991)

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 20.4 square miles (52.8 km²), of which, 19.8 square miles (51.3 km²) of it is land and 0.6 square miles (1.6 km²) of it (2.94%) is water.

History

Before the English settled the area, it was inhabited by the Potatuck Indians, members of the Algonquin Federation. [http://www.brookfieldcthistory.org/page_Brookfield.html#Newbury] "Newbury to Brookfield" Web page at "Brookfield Historical Society" Web site, accessed April 6, 2007] In the 1700s the community was called "Newbury," a name that came from the three towns from which its land was taken – New Milford, Newtown, and Danbury. [http://www.brookfield.org/TownHistory.htm] "Brookfield, Connecticut History" Web page on the Town of Brookfield Web site, accessed July 23, 2006]

As traveling to surrounding churches was difficult in winter, in 1752 the General Assembly gave the community the right to worship in area homes from September through March. In 1754, the General Assembly granted permission for the Parish of Newbury to build its own meeting house and recruit its own minister. On September 28, 1757, the first Congregational Church building was dedicated. The Reverend Thomas Brooks was ordained as the first settled minister. Incorporated in 1778, the town's name was changed to Brookfield in honor of Brooks who was still the minister.

Along the Still River mills were in operation as early as 1732 in an area that became known as the Iron Works District. Brookfield was a thriving town with iron furnaces, grist mills, sawmills, comb shops, carding and cotton mills, a paper mill, a knife factory, hat factories, stage-coach shops, lime kilns, harness shops and other plants in operation. The grist mill still stands, as The Brookfield Craft Center. The Iron Works Aqueduct Company, formed in 1837 to supply water from mountain springs to the Iron Works District, still supplies water as the Brookfield Water Company.

Before 1912 the town had two train stations: one in the Iron Works District near the present Brookfield Market and second, Junction Station, near the corner of Junction Road and Stony Hill Road.

Danbury & Bethel Gas and Electric Company brought electricity to Brookfield in 1915. The .475 Wildey Magnum gun, later made famous in the 1985 Charles Bronson movie "Death Wish 3", was developed by Wildey J. Moore in Brookfield in the early 1970s (the factory has since moved to Warren, Connecticut).

In the early 1970s, the town was home to LEGO USA headquarters.

The White Turkey Inn was razed in 1972. A historic, rambling, and quintessentially New England building, The White Turkey Inn was situated on several bucolic acres with towering trees and ponds at the intersection of US Route 7/Federal Road and what is now referred to as Candlewood Lake Road.

It is worth noting some controversy regarding large-scale commercial and residential development is part of ongoing local conversation. From present time (2008) going back to the early 1980s, Brookfield has been radically transformed from colonial New England town to a major shopping and consumer goods destination while other surrounding towns have managed to avoid "suburban sprawl". Lake Candlewood has also seen an unprecedented volume of summer traffic as well as housing projects. Many long term residents feel the town has lost its endearing colonial New England charms. Others are concerned about environmental impacts while some lament the warm small town feeling lost to commuter traffic and high turn over of residential home ownership. Federal Road (Route 7) has seen large scale commercial development while the town's outlying forests and farmland have reached near 100% residential home construction build out. A once postcard-perfect town and lake, now face congestion challenges and peak growth concerns while trying to maintain a semblance of once unique and beautiful "old Brookfield".

Demographics

As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 15,664 people, 5,572 households, and 4,368 families residing in the town. The population density was 791.1 people per square mile (305.4/km²). There were 5,781 housing units at an average density of 292.0/sq mi (112.7/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 95.29% White, 0.76% Black or African American, 0.07% Native American, 2.48% Asian, 0.61% from other races, and 0.79% from two or more races. 2.37% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 5,573 households out of which 39.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 68.1% were married couples living together, 7.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.6% were non-families. 17.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.80 and the average family size was 3.18.

In the town the population was spread out with 27.4% under the age of 18, 4.9% from 18 to 24, 29.2% from 25 to 44, 27.8% from 45 to 64, and 10.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 94.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.0 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $82,706, and the median income for a family was $91,296. Males had a median income of $63,396 versus $36,318 for females. The per capita income for the town was $37,063. About 1.2% of families and 2.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.4% of those under age 18 and 2.3% of those age 65 or over.

Education

Brookfield's public schools are: Brookfield High School, Center School, Whisconier Middle School, and Huckleberry Hill School. Its parochial school is St. Joseph's School.

Brookfield High School and Bethel High School are sports rivals, primarily in football, although the two schools share a single hockey team, made up of both Brookfield and Bethel students. Brookfield High School also shares a rivalry with New Milford High School in cross-country and track. The rivalry intensified when New Milford's track coach left to coach for the Brookfield team.

Brookfield's mascot is the Bobcats, with its colors being blue and gold.

Notable Natives

* M. Jodi Rell, governor of Connecticut (resident since 1969)
* Kari Wührer (born 1967), actress and singer of Cherokee and German descent.
* Julia DeMato, contestant on "American Idol"
* Will Denton, actor on the NBC series Kidnapped.
* Arne Cheyenne Johnson, committed towns first murder, thought by some to have been possessed by demons.

Media

*WINE-AM 940; 1,000 watts
* [http://www.i95rock.com/general/home.php WRKI-FM] 95.1; 50,000 watts; the station has a "mainstream rock" format and covers Fairfield, Litchfield, New Haven counties in Connecticut and Putnam, Dutchess, Westchester counties in New York; owned by [http://www.cumulus.com/cumulus_home.cfm Cumulus Media] .

References

External links

* [http://www.brookfield.org/ Town government Web site]
* [http://www.brookfield.k12.ct.us/ Brookfield Public Schools]
* [http://www.brookfieldlibrary.org/ Brookfield Library]
* [http://www.brookfieldchamber.org/ Brookfield Chamber of Commerce]
* [http://www.brookfieldcthistory.org/ Brookfield Museum and Historical Society]
* [http://www.brookfieldplayhouse.org/ Brookfield Theatre for the Arts]
* [http://www.litchfieldhills.com/app/index.jsp Northeast Connecticut Convention and Visitors Bureau]


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