Hamden Historical Society.
Beth Shutts, who was Archivist for nearly five years, looks forward to continuing as a researcher with the other History Room volunteers.
Last Update: October 12, 2018
Wednesday, September 21, 1938
This is a paragraph. Double-click the text box and begin editing. Use the text editor to customize your text. It's that easy!
(Featured previously on the website for the Hamden Fire Retirees Association.)
World War I Centennial Commemoration
at Town Center Park, September 21-23, 2018
Town Center Park was transformed into a World War I battlefield last weekend as the Town of Hamden observed the centennial of what was then called "The World War." William M. MacMullen, a member of the United States World War One Commission of New Haven and Hamden, was among several WWI re-enactors present over the weekend who provided visitors with insights into what our "doughboys" experienced during America's 19-month involvement in hostilities. Mr. MacMullen, also a member of Hamden's Veterans Commission, and numerous other re-enactors gave lectures and conducted demonstrations on the roles of weapons, trench defenses, and ambulances in the "War to End all Wars."
Of the approximately 4,000,000 American servicemen who served in WWI, 116,708 died either in combat, from wounds, or from Spanish influenza. At 1 o'clock Sunday afternoon, the centennial commemoration ceremony honored Hamden's WWI veterans, including the fifteen Hamden fallen whose names are inscribed on the rotunda wall at Hamden's Memorial Town Hall.
Going "Over the Top"
A WWI re-enactor demonstrates coming out of the trenches to advance on the enemy
The Hamden Historical Society
Miller Library - Top Floor
Regular hours: Tuesdays from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Please email us with questions or to set up an appointment
Like us on Facebook!
Hamden Historical Society History Room
70 Years Ago - September 26, 1948
Hamden's Last Trolley Ride
One of the most significant weather events to impact Hamden in the 20th century was the Great New England Hurricane of 1938, which occurred 80 years ago this week. Hundreds of trees were downed and electric and telephone service in some areas was interrupted for days, even weeks. In all, the hurricane took 682 lives, mostly in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.
Photo: Looking west on Dixwell Avenue, between Washington and Whitney Avenues. The building in the background is the rear of the Malavolti building, on the corner of Whitney and Dixwell Avenues. Once the Sackett Hotel, the Malavolti building was torn down after it was gutted by fire in February 1941. The Brown Stone House Restaurant was built on the site in 1949.
On March 19, 1941, the Dixwell Avenue trolley and Hamden Fire Department's hook and ladder truck collided at Mather Street. The trolley car was not seriously damaged and, fortunately, neither was the driver of the fire truck. However, the 1926 Maxim ladder truck was a total loss.
This week marks the 70th anniversary of Hamden's last trolley run. Three lines ran into Hamden from New Haven: State Street to Merritt Street (Schuetzen Park), Whitney Avenue to Waterbury, and Dixwell Avenue to Benham Street. Beginning in the early 20th century, the town of Hamden sought to have the Dixwell trolley line extended all the way to Centerville, but the proposal was repeatedly rejected by the Connecticut Company, which operated the trolleys. Residents of Highwood had to go to New Haven center and transfer to the Whitney line in order to get to Centerville and points north.
Connecticut Company had intended to end trolley service in the New Haven area much earlier, as it had in the Hartford area. But World War II intervened and gasoline conservation extended the lives of New Haven area trolleys until three years after the end of hostilities. All trolley service ended September 26, 1948. CLICK HERE for more Hamden trolley photos.
According to author Leslie H. Tyler, who published The New England Hurricane (© October 1938 - Leslie H. Tyler), "The wind velocity was officially recorded at 186 miles per hour at the Harvard Meteorological Observatory at Blue Hill . . . on the edge of the storm."
Mr. Tyler compiled the booklet of 177 photos and illustrations shortly after the September 21, 1938 storm. Four of the photos were taken in Hamden by professional news photogtrapher, I.A. Sneiderman, who lived on Still Hill Road, almost opposite its intersection with Johnson Road.
CLICK HERE to view all four of Sneiderman's photos and see what a couple of those locations look like today.
From The Hamden Chronicle, Thursday, September 23, 1948
Our Story: The Way it Was
Our town has a very rich history. Some of our past is well-known to many of us, but some is completely unknown to most of us. Every month in this space, your town Historian and other History Room researchers will showcase an important personality, landmark, or event from Hamden's past. We hope this feature will inspire our website visitors to know more about people, places, and events that have shaped our town since 1786.
We remember Hamden resident Antonio Cardo, who died one hundred years ago this weekend while serving in the U.S. Army during World War I. Pvt. Cardo was born in Italy in 1894. Around 1912, he came to this country with his younger brother Joseph and worked for the Marlin-Rockwell Corporation until May 1918, when he was drafted into the U.S. Army.
While serving in the U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps, Pvt. Cardo died on Sunday, October 13, 1918, in the Spanish Influenza pandemic that killed an estimated 20 to 30 million or more worldwide.
Pvt. Cardo's great-great-grandnephew, Anthony Cardo (right) of Hamden, one of numerous participants during a recent WWI re-enactment at Town Center Park, has researched his relative. Cardo found the above reference to Antonio's military service in Hamden Men in the World War, where the older Cardo was erroneously listed as "Card," an error believed to have been the result of a typo. Anthony Cardo was also stunned to learn that Antonio died on October 13,1918 at the age of 24. On October 13, 2018, the 100th anniversary of Cardo's passing, his great-great-grandnephew Anthony will turn 24
Remembering Hamden's Antonio Cardo on
the centennial of his death while serving during in WWI
Anthony Cardo, WWI Re-enactor