Thursday, March 8, 2012

Those Places Thursday: Middletown's "Urban Renewal"

   Having visited Middletown after the "urban renewal" process, it's hard to envision what downtown Middletown looked prior to the wrecking ball's arrival in the 1950s and 60s. That process destroyed much of the harbor housing and the area from Main Street to the Connecticut River. It took out historic homes, the original city hall and more.
   Recent news articles have detailed the damage. One article in The Hartford Courant explained how the old city hall has largely given way to parking slots. Another (which I currently can't locate) included shots of the city pre-destruction. However, all of these articles offer only generalities.
   This has always left me to wonder. What did we actually lose? The areas described as slums probably had 18th century homes. One was rumored to be the residence of George Washington's body servant.
   Do you have family ties to these "renewed" regions? What is modern Middletown missing?

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