Town of Bolton
Tolland County, Connecticut
Bolton, Connecticut is located on the western border of Tolland County. It is bordered by Vernon to the north, Coventry and Andover to the east, Hebron to the south, and Manchester to the west.
Bolton was originally owned by the Indians, whose chief was "Uncas." The first settlers began to come into the area around 1716 from Windsor, Wethersfield and Hartford. In 1718 the first land deed was issued to Jabez Loomis of Windsor, CT. Until 1720 when it was incorporated, this area was considered part of Hartford. It was usually referred to as "Hartford Mountains" or sometimes, "Hanover." Up until 1808 the town of Vernon was part of Bolton (North Bolton) and it was bordered by Ellington to the North, Tolland and Coventry to the East, Hebron to the South and East Hartford to the West.
In November of 1721 it was decided that a meeting house was necessary. It was to stand "a little north of the pond". (Bolton Lake).
The town was rather self sufficient. Wheat was grown for about 75 years. Cattle, horses and sheep were raised for export, as well as butter, cheese, beef, pork, cider and cider brandy. The grew their own flax for linen, and hay, corn, oats and rye.
The first schools were voted into existence in 1732. The town decided that 3 would suit their needs. The first schools were established in 1749. In 1760 the town was divided into 2 societies.
In 1725 Rev. Thomas White agreed to become the minister. He came to town and settled onto a lot that had been set aside for his use. The town boundaries were set up in December 1726.
The population of Bolton has varied greatly over the years. In 1782 there were 1,081 residents. In 1810 it dropped to 700 (827 were in Vernon). In 1900 it dropped even further. The mills and quarries drew more people (8,483) to Vernon, with 457 remaining in Bolton. In 1960 there was a rather large increase again, up to 2,933, though it couldn't compare with Vernon who at that time had 16,961 people.
Bolton still remains a small rural town. There are still many farms. There are many old houses still standing around various areas of town. As you drive the Boston Turnpike (Rte 44) towards UCONN, there are always signs for some kind of church supper, fair, summer church camps or fairs in town.
If you have any reference material on or related to Bolton and would like to volunteer as a resource, or if you know of a Bolton link that would be appropriate to add to this site, please e-mail me with the details. Linda Pingel
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This page was created by Linda Pingel on Aug. 28, 2004
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This page was last updated: May 14, 2007