Mar 5, 2012


Scenes from the View-Master packet Connecticut (A750) from the State Tour Series.


View-Master packet cover Connecticut (A750)

Packet Cover


View-Master booklet cover Connecticut (A750)

Booklet Cover


From the 16-page booklet:

All of the “needs and notions” of America’s settlers during the 1700’s were supplied by Yankee Peddlers. Their wagons, loaded with goods made in Connecticut by America’s first factories, followed the pioneers westward. They returned with orders for more goods and ideas for improved products. The industries, flourishing in America’s fifth state (1788), not only produced these items, but invented machines to make them faster, more accurately. This fine precision led to the basic idea of mass production—interchangeable parts. From its birthplace in this small state, nursed by the spark of Yankee inventive genius, grew the giant of American industrial skill.

A FEW FACTS AND FIGURES. The third smallest state, Connecticut (5,009 sq. mi.), has been issued more patents in proportion to population than any other. Eli Terry invented the modern clock; Linus Yale, the Yale lock; Samuel Morse, the telegraph; Gail Borden, the condensed milk process; Elias Howe, the first successful sewing machine; and Charles Goodyear, the vulcanizing of rubber. The first helicopter, first 10,000-lb. thrust jet engine, and the world’s first nuclear submarine originated here. Connecticut leads in their production, and in ball and roller bearings, pins and needles, silverware, small firearms, and thread. It is 25th in population (2,535,234 in ‘60) but ranks first in persons employed in manufacturing.

GEOGRAPHICALLY SPEAKING.  Connecticut’s low, forested western mountains and gently rolling uplands slope into a coastal lowland and rocky submerged shoreline along Long Island Sound. Placid colonial villages and prosperous farms surround industrial cities along the rivers. This rural beauty makes Connecticut a haven for artists and authors, lovers of suburban living, and a favored vacation area.

THE HUMAN SIDE.  Tradition says traders from the “Nutmeg State” were shrewd enough to sell housewives wooden nutmegs. Fact is, no Connecticut Yankee would bother; he had too many things to sell that really were both new and better. The Latin motto, “He Who Transplanted Still Sustains” once referred to the first English settlers, but also fits the later Irish, Germans, Italians, Canadians, Scandinavians, and Poles, who came equipped with Yankee virtues of hard-working thrift.



Shakespeare Theatre,


View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 3: Shakepeare Theatre in Stratford, CT

Festival Theatre stages Shakespeare’s dramas


From the 16-page booklet:



The centuries-old plays of William Shakespeare are still-living theatre as played on the stage of the Stratford Festival Theatre. Although a reproduction of the octagonal Globe theatre of Shakespeare’s day, it is air-conditioned and has almost perfect acoustics. Located on the Housatonic River delta on the site of the landing of Stratford’s first settlers (1639), it features a continuous cycle of plays by the great dramatist from June until September.



First Congregational Church, Litchfield

View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 7: First Congregational Church in Litchfield built in 1773

Historic First Congregational Church (1773), Litchfield


From the 16-page booklet:



Located in wooded uplands cut by the winding, shaded Housatonic, Litchfield typifies the historic rural beauty surrounding Connecticut’s busy industrial cities. Its 137-year-old church and the village green with its colonial houses still used as private homes, symbolize Yankee faith in God, in freedom, and in law. The city contains the homes of Oliver Wolcott, signer of the Declaration of Independence, and Mayor Benjamin Talmadge, Revolutionary War hero; and in 1773 Tapping Reeve established the country’s first law school in a one-room building. From this fountainhead of American law, came more than 154 leaders, ranging from two vice-presidents and six cabinet members, through congressmen, governors, and one duelist—Aaron Burr who, while still Vice-President of the United States, in a political dispute killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel.



A Connecticut Farm

View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 10: A Connecticut Farm

A typical Connecticut farm


From the 16-page booklet:


Fine red barns mark the state’s prosperous farms, from the Connecticut River Valley with its row crops and fruits, to the less fertile eastern and western uplands which produce poultry, sheep, and dairy products. A fine transportation system, densely populated cities which consume most perishable crops grown in the state, plus a huge surrounding eastern metropolitan market in neighboring states, give land here a per-acre value surpassed only by citrus-rich California and Florida.



State Capital,


View-Master Connecticut, Scene 11: State Capital, Hartford

State Capital, Hartford


From the 16-page booklet:


The gold-domed Gothic state capitol in Hartford was completed late in the state’s history (1879). Hartford (metropolitan population 549,249) is located in the north-central area. It is the state’s financial-industrial center, as well as a historical one. The colony’s Fundamental Orders, drawn up here in 1639, embodied liberal ideas used as a model for the United States Constitution. The beautiful colonial “Old” State House (1796), bordering Constitution Plaza, was the site of the Charter Oak Incident in 1687.



Constitution Plaza,


View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 12: Constitution Plaza, Hartford

Hartford’s ultra-modern Constitution Plaza


From the 16-page booklet:


Gleaming new buildings, view from under the corner of the unique, two-sided Phoenix Mutual Insurance building, reveal completion of the Plaza renewal project, begun in the mid-fifties. Hartford, which originated insurance, is home to forty firms. A few of its many industrial products are Royal and Underwood Typewriters, Fuller Brushes, Pratt & Whitney jet engines, and the famous firearms invented by Samuel B. Colt of Hartford.

While on a sea voyage in 1830, Samuel Colt noticed a clutch that locked on the ship’s wheel to keep it exactly on course. He adapted the idea to align cartridges in an ammunition cylinder with the gun barrel and created the world’s first “revolver.” One of the firm’s most famous models, still in production, is the Colt .45 Peacemaker which helped tame the wild west.



Webb House,


View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 13: Washington's Council Room, Webb House at Wethersfield

Washington’s Council Room—Webb House, Wethersfield


From the 16-page booklet:


Here in the Council Room of Webb House, Gen. George Washington met with Count de Rochambeau in 1781 to plan the combined American-French campaign, which resulted in the British surrender at Yorktown and final victory for the Colonies. The tall, stately, gambrel-roofed house, built in 1752, has been painstakingly restored by the Daughters of the American Revolution. Upstairs, Washington’s bedchamber is preserved with the original wallpaper.



Nathan Hale Home,


View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 14: Nathan Hale's birthplace, Coventry

Nathan Hale’s birthplace, Coventry


From the 16-page booklet:


Nathan Hale lived only twenty-one years after his birth at this house on June 6, 1755. Yale-educated, he gave up teaching during the Revolution and became a Captain in Knowlton’s Rangers, a group famed for its daring missions.

Possibly America’s first espionage agent, he penetrated the British lines disguised as a Dutch schoolmaster and made some sketches of the enemy fortifications. Captured, and asked if he had any last words, he answered in a sentence immortal to American patriotism, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” An unimpressed British officer angrily replied, “Swing the rebel up!”

Connecticut provided many such patriots from General Israel Putnam and Ethan Allen of Vermont “Green Mountain Boys” fame, and (sadly) brilliant, erratic Benedict Arnold, to merchants such as Silas Deane and Connecticut governor Jonathan Trumbull, who used their talents to obtain badly needed supplies. The state responded so well that General Washington nicknamed it “The Provision State.”



Gillette Castle,

East Haddam

View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 15: Gillette Castle, East Haddam

Gillette Castle, East Haddam


From the 16-page booklet:



No man took the saying, “A man’s home is his castle” more to heart than William Gillette, famous actor-playwright of the early 1900’s. Gillette, who created the well-known image of Sherlock Holmes in deerstalker hat and Inverness cape, built his castle on the highest point in the lower Connecticut Valley, overlooking the river. It is now a state park and draws over 100,000 annual visitors, fascinated by the medieval architecture and the huge 50x30-foot living room with its soaring 19-foot-high ceiling..



Nuclear-powered sub,


View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 20: Launching a nuclear sub at Groton Shipyard in New London

Launching a nuclear sub, Groton


From the 16-page booklet:


The mighty saga of undersea craft that began here with David Bushnell’s invention of his tiny, man-powered sub Turtle during the Revolution, continues as another nuclear submarine slides down the ways of General Dynamics’ Groton Shipyard. The firm also produced the navy’s first sub, the Holland, in 1900, as well as the nuclear prototype Nautilus (1954).

Now home base for the nuclear navy, New London has been the site of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy since 1910. Its Naval history began in Revolutionary days when its privateers were so successful that the British, under Benedict Arnold, burned the town. Later it was a whaling center second only to New Bedford, Massachusetts.



Mystic Seaport

View-Master Connecticut (A750), Scene 21: Mystic Seaport

Mystic Seaport is replica of old whaling days seaport


From the 16-page booklet:


Although Mystic Seaport, near the eastern border, is a recent historical reconstruction, it carries all the tang and romance of old whaling days.

Sailing ships ride creakingly at anchor beside cobbled streets lined with the dwellings, shops, chandleries, and tavern of an early New England seaport. Vessels actually used during the era—range from the Charles W. Morgan, last of the wooden whalers, to the Gundel, whose last trip across the seas after 75 years of voyaging brought 29 Latvians through the Iron Curtain to America. Such endurance and courage have always found “home port” among Connecticut Yankees..

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