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Some Interesting Facts about Connecticut

Connecticut's first people, probably Asian in origin, arrived 10,000 to 12,000 years ago. These hardy immigrants found a landscape drastically different from today's : a harsh tundra largely devoid of trees. The glaciers of the last Ice Age, in their retreat 18,000 years ago, had scraped clean Connecticut's countenance. Small pockets of trees--conifers first, then deciduous species--were beginnings to spring up.

Because ocean levels were considerably lower then. Connecticut's shoreline lay about 100 miles south of where it is today and Long Island Sound was a freshwater lake, the ocean not yet formed. The paleo-Indians, as Connecticut's first human inhabitants are called, settled along the rivers and shoreline where wildlife was most abundant.

The early Indians may have seen mastodons wandering the land in that species' last days before extinction: they certainly saw and hunted caribou and reindeer, which haven't roamed these parts for many a year. The Indians' hunter-gatherer lifestyle required their communities consisting of a few families, perhaps 40 to 50 people, to move around to find the most food and fuel.

About 1,000 years ago Connecticut's inhabitants began to cultivate crops. Corn (maize, which had made its way up from Mexico through intertribal trade) and winter squash became staples,,because, unlike perishable foods, they provided a relatively reliable source of nutrition during the long winter months. Stable food supplies led to larger populations and more permanent settlements. Villages grew to hold hundreds rather than dozens, and although the Indians still might have traveled to seasonal food supplies, they returned to their fields each growing season. This is the lifestyle that European traders and explorers encountered in the 1500s, when they first began showing up regularly on North America's Shores.

Today, along with the other New England States Connecticut offers many outdoor activities and festivals, along with events such as Conniticuts agricultural fairs. Spending a golden August afternoon cheering on a drover at an ox-pull or taking turns at midday games is one of the most purely fun and wholesome experience imaginable.