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shed a powerful light
on their descendants,
and forbid
the concealment
either of
their merits
or of
their demerits."

- Gaius Sallustius

A directory of destinations for Middletown research

Middletown has an abundance of genealogy and local history resources (four libraries/archives). Less than 30 minutes away are the Connecticut State Library, Connecticut Historical Society Library, and the library of the Connecticut Society of Genealogists. Below is a concise directory of these research destinations, plus a selection of useful web sites. (Don't forget to double-check library hours before visiting.)

Check our Member Area's Genealogy Resources Page for (1) summaries of library holdings relevant to Middletown research; (2) resources unique to each library; and (3) comments & tips about each. You'll also find a bibliography of Middletown local history & genealogy.

Middletown Area

Russell Library (Middletown's public library) (Middletown Room - local history)
123 Broad Street, Middletown CT 06457; (860) 347-2520; www.russelllibrary.org
Contact: Denise Russo, Reference Librarian
Hours: Mon. - Thurs., 9 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.; Fri., Noon - 6 p.m.; Sat., 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. (school year); Sun 2 - 5 p.m. (closed Sun. mid-May to mid-Oct.)

Middlesex County Historical Society (General Mansfield House)
151 Main Street, Middletown, CT 06457; (860) 346-0746; www.middlesexhistory.org
Contact: Deborah Shapiro, Executive Director
Hours: Tues., Wed., & Thurs. 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.; Fri. 10 a.m. - Noon; Genealogy & research by appointment only.

Godfrey Memorial Library (Genealogy library; national in scope)
134 Newfield Street, Middletown, CT 06457; (860) 346-4375; www.godfrey.org
Contact: Beth Mariotti, Director
Winter Hours: Wed. 12 noon - 8 p.m.; Thurs. & Fri., 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.; 1st & 3rd Sat., 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Olin Library Special Collections & Archives (Wesleyan University)
252 Church Street, Middletown, CT 06459; Main Library: (860) 685-386-3123;
Archives: (860) 685-3863; http://www.wesleyan.edu/libr/schome/
Contact: Suzy Taraba, Archivist
Hours: Special Collections & Archives Reading Room - Monday - Friday, 1 - 5 p.m.
(Olin Library regular stacks: Mon. - Thurs., 8:30 a.m. - 2 a.m.; Fri., 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. - 10 p.m.; Sun., 10 a.m. - 2 a.m.).

City of Middletown Department of Health & Vital Statistics (births/marriages/deaths)
Middletown City Hall, 245 deKoven Drive, Middletown, CT 06457; (860) 344-3537
Contact: Lisa Mountain, Assistant Registrar of Vital Statistics
Hours: Mon. - Fri., 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

A note on Middletown Vital Records: Vital records in Connecticut are kept by the Town Clerk for each town. Keep in mind that the original area of Middletown encompassed what are now Middletown, Cromwell, and Middlefield on the west side of the Connecticut River; and Portland and East Hampton on the east side. For the genealogist this means knowing when each town was incorporated as a separate entity, and therefore when it began keeping its own vital records. In 1767 the town of Chatham was incorporated, encompassing the Middletown lands on the east side of the river. In 1841 the present area of Portland was incorporated, separating from Chatham. The remaining town of Chatham remained, but changed its name to East Hampton in 1915. On the west side of the river, the "Upper Houses" incorporated as the town of Cromwell in 1851. Middlefield, in the southwest corner of Middletown, incorporated as a separate town in 1866.

Hartford Area

Connecticut Historical Society Library
One Elizabeth Street at Asylum Avenue; Hartford, CT 06105; (860) 236-5621
Contact: Judith E. Johnson, Reference Librarian & Genealogist
Hours: Tues. - Fri., 12 Noon - 5 p.m.; Sat. 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Connecticut State Library (Information Services Division - History & Genealogy)
231 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, CT 06106; (860) 757-6500; http://www.cslib.org/handg.htm
Contact: Jeannie Sherman or Carol Ganz, Reference Librarians
Hours: Mon. - Fri., 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Sat. 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Connecticut Society of Genealogists
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 435, Glastonbury, CT 06033
Library: 175 Maple Street, East Hartford, CT 06118; (860) 569-0002; www.csginc.org
Hours: Mon. - Fri., 9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.

New England / Northeast

New England Historic Genealogical Society
101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116; (617) 536-5740
Contact: Marie E. Daly, Director
Hours: Tues., Thurs., Fri., Sat., 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Wed., 9 a.m. - 9 p.m.

National Archives - Northeast Region/Waltham, Mass.
Frederick C. Murphy Federal Center
380 Trapelo Road, Waltham, MA 02452; (781) 663-0130
Hours: (Archives) Mon., Tues., Wed., Fri., 7 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.; Thurs., 7 a.m. - 9 p.m.
(plus 1st Saturday of the month, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.)

National Archives - Northeast Region/Pittsfield, Mass.
10 Conte Drive, Pittsfield, MA 01201; (413) 236-3600
Hours: Mon. - Fri., 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
(plus 1st & 3rd Wed. eves to 9 p.m. & 1st Saturday of every month, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.)

National Archives - Northeast Region/New York, N.Y.
201 Varick Street, 12th Floor, New York, NY 10014; (212) 401-1620
Hours: Mon. - Fri., 9 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (plus 1st Saturday of every month)

Web sites of interest to Middletown researchers

The Connecticut Index of Jane Devlin's "Dunham-Wilcox" web site
A treasure-trove of Middletown and Middlesex County records, including vital records (Barbour), cemetery records, wills, deeds, the 1853 Centennial Address of David D. Field, Middletown Upper Houses by Charles Collard Adams (1908), and much more.

Middlesex County USGenWeb Project
Assemblage of resources, links, & records for Middlesex County towns.

Middletown USGenWeb Home Page
Assemblage of resources, links, & records for Middletown from volunteer contributors.

Ray Brown's Place for New England Genealogy
Miscellaneous vital records, biographies, town histories, cemetery records, and more.

General genealogy web sites

RootsWeb Home Page
RootsWeb is a free genealogy web site with how-to information for the beginning genealogist, plus links to databases, mailing lists, message boards, and much more.

Cyndi's List
Cyndi's List is the ultimate index of Internet links (over 250,000) to genealogy web sites.

FamilySearch LDS Church Web Site
Worldwide searchable database of names & dates, plus member-submitted family trees.
Note: Unsourced data is primarily useful for research hints only. Always verify sources.