Stamford City

Fairfield County, Connecticut

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Stamford City Hall is located at 888 Washington Boulevard, Stamford CT 06901.
Phone: 203‑977‑4140.


In 2007, at about 120,000 population, Stamford ranked as the 4th largest city in the State and the 8th largest in New England.

Beginnings [1]

Rippowams was the picturesque designation by which Stamford was known to the Indians. They were members of the tribe of Paugausetts who were the natural owners of the soil of all this part of the State. Of their customs and life it is sufficient to say that they were "indians" of the laziest and most inoffensive class.

During the Fall of 1640 they were surprised by the entrance into their harbor of a party of white men, probably the first that most of them had ever seen. The leader of the whites was Captain Nathaniel Turner, a military commander of the New Haven Colony, and their agent in the purchase of territory, who immediately opened negotiations with the Stamford Indians for their land. They finally disposed of it, keeping only a small reservation for themselves, for "twelve coats, twelve hoes, twelve hatchets, twelve knives, two kettles, and four fathoms of white wampum."

A few months later the New Haven Colony sold the land purchased at Stamford to the inhabitants of Wethersfield for 30 pounds sterling, the latter agreeing to adopt the New Haven church form of government in their management of affairs. Before the close of the year 1641, there were 30 or 40 families from the Wethersfield Colony settled here, the latter in fact being practically abandoned because of the superiority of the soil and situation of Stamford.

Stamford must have grown very slowly during the century from 1650 to 1750, as the records of the State show little evidence of its existence during this time. The second minister was the Reverend John Davenport, son of John Davenport, the famous originator and leader of the New Haven Colony. The Reverend Mr. Davenport's pastorate in Stamford was thirty six years in duration, from 1695 to 1731, when he died.

During the Revolutionary War, the proximity of Stamford to New York made the town unusually subject to incursions from the British, who used frequently to land in the harbor, shooting and carrying off cattle.

By 1887 Stamford was under a full swing of development and had become a popular place of residence for businessmen of New York City. Before the 1890s more than 28 trains ran each way between NYC and Stamford as well as daily steamboat trips back and forth.

  1. Leading Business Men of Fairfield County; and a Historical Review of the Principal Cities, Mercantile Publishing Company, Boston, 1887.

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