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Story Time at the Thankful Arnold House Museum
Saturday, December 16
10 am at the Thankful Arnold House Museum

On Saturday, December 16, 2017 at 10 am story-teller, Christine Tkaczyk will entertain and engage children with holiday stories in the historic setting of the Thankful Arnold House Museum. While children hear stories of Christmases past, parents and caregivers can shop the museum’s gift shop or partake in making a Christmas craft. Open to the public and free admission.

First Day Hike at Haddam Meadows State Park
January 1, 2018
1 pm to 3 pm

The CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is once again offering First Day Hikes on New Year’s Day at its state parks. This year we are pleased to announce that Haddam Meadows State Park will be joining other state parks including Gillette Castle, Hammonasset, Machimoodus, Sleeping Giant and others to offer a hike. The hike will be held from 1 to 3 pm. It will be lead by Cherry Czuba, CT DEEP Adopt-A Park volunteer, Lisa Malloy, Executive Director of the Haddam Historical Society, and Gail Reynolds, UCONN Extension Master Gardener Coordinator .The approximately two mile hike will include the following: the history of the meadows, some background geology and floodplain habitats of the park, the human impact on the landscape, native plants found in the memorial butterfly garden and opportunities to volunteer at the park.

Please meet at the park entrance, wear warm clothes, (snowshoes or cross country skis ) and bring water. Children under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. Dogs must be leashed. Light refreshments will be served. Stormy weather will cancel the hike. For further information contact Cherry Czuba at


On Sunday, November 5, 2017 the Haddam Historical Society held its 39 th Annual Founders’ Day Dinner which honors the town’s founding fathers and mothers as well as the Native Americans from whom the Plantation at Thirty Mile Island was purchased for 30 coats in 1662.  

Each year, the Society bestows the Founders’ Day Award to a person or persons who have performed an outstanding service to the Haddam Historical Society and contributed substantially to furthering the mission of the Society, which is to preserve, collect, interpret and promote the history and heritage of Haddam for present and future generations.

This year the society honored Tiger Carlson of Higganum who has contributed to the organization in many ways from offering his carpentry skills to sharing family history. He and his wife, Yvonne have contributed to numerous programs and events and have assisted at the Connecticut Spring Antiques Show and worked on the gardens and grounds to name a few of their endeavors. The Carlson Family has been a staple in Higganum for over 150 years and have contributed to the community in many important ways including Tiger’s parents, Charlie and Pat Carlson, who played Mr. and Mrs. Claus spreading joy and happiness during the holiday season. Tiger continues the family tradition of giving back and being involved in making our community a great place to live.

Pictured (L to R): Elizabeth Malloy, HHS Director; Pat Carlson; Yvonne Carlson; and Tiger Carlson


On Sunday, October 15, 2017 at 3 pm
at the Haddam Fire Station #1, 439 Saybrook Road, Higganum native, Lindamae Peck will talk about her research into the D & H Scovil company records for the year December 1889 to December 1890. D & H Scovil Company, whose factories were located along Candlewood Hill Road, manufactured hoes that were shipped throughout the southern states. Lindamae’s great-grandfather, Orlando Burr worked for D & H Scovil between 1869 and 1907 starting as a bookkeeper and working his way to plant superintendent. Join us for a fascinating glimpse into Higganum’s Industrial Past. Free admission and light refreshments


Saturday, October 21, 2017 1 pm to 4 pm
Meet some of the interesting people who are buried in one of Haddam’s oldest cemeteries including the wife of a polygamist, the mother of a two year old killed by the train and two brothers who died during the Civil War. You will visit with members of the Tyler, Shailer, Cone and Brooks families.
Admission is $5 per person (12 and under for free)
Light refreshments



Previous Events


Heart of the Home Kitchen Tour

Haddam Historical Society presents
Heart of the Home Kitchen Tour
Saturday, September 23, 2017
11 am to 4 pm
On Saturday, September 23, 2017 the Haddam Historical Society will host a tour of seven stunning kitchens from 11 am to 4 pm. The tour will feature some of Haddam’s and Higganum’s most fabulous kitchens dating from the 1700s to today. Many of the highlighted kitchens have been innovatively and professionally renovated and demonstrate how a new kitchen can work in an old house. Visitors will also view historic 18 th century kitchens where cooking was done on the hearth. Each stop on the tour will feature a special demonstration, display or tasting. Tickets are $25 per person in advance and $30 day of the tour.

click here to buy ticket ONLINE




Haddam Neck Fair Tour
Sunday, September 3, 2017
2:30 to 3:15 pm
Meet in front of the Haddam Neck Grange Hall
Free with admission to the fair

Join Haddam Historical Society Executive Director, Elizabeth Malloy for a fun and informative tour of the Haddam Neck Fair Grounds. Co-author of the Haddam Neck Fair 100 Year History, Malloy will cover architectural highlights and historical anecdotes. Participants will meet long time fair attendees (90 plus years) and former winners of the baby contest. Visitors will learn fascinating tidbits about one of Connecticut’s oldest agricultural fairs. The tour will start at the front of the Grange Hall.

Saturday, June 17, 2017
5 pm to 9 pm
12 Landing Road South, Higganum, CT
Shiny Lapel Trio

Join us for an evening of Music on the shores of the beautiful Connecticut River in Higganum. Bring your Dancing Shoes!

The Shiny Lapel trio
Bring a dish to share and your own libations.
we will provide dessert and soft drinks

Bring a lawn chair or blanket for the concert by the water.
Wearing Layers and bug spray suggested.

$20 per person
Please car pool or call 860-345-2400 for shuttle information.

Info and r.s.v.p. 860-345-2400 or
Respond by June 15 and send check to HHS, P.O. Box 97, Haddam, CT 06438

Click here for more information and to sign up and pay

2017 Haddam Historical Society Scholarship

Autumn Sage Strom with Director, Elizabeth Malloy

On Tuesday, May 30, 2017 the Haddam Historical Society presented its fifth annual High School Scholarship Award at the Haddam-Killingworth High School Award Ceremony to Autumn Sage Strom, daughter of Heather and Dalton Strom of Higganum. The $500 scholarship award was based upon scholastic standing, contribution to school, community activities and interest in history.

Outhouse Tour

On Saturday, April 29, 2017 from 1 pm to 5pm the Haddam Historical Society will host a historic outhouse tour of seven area privies in Haddam and Higganum. The self-guided tour will start at the Thankful Arnold House Museum where the newly interpreted four-hole backhouse will be unveiled. The tour will highlight a variety of “necessaries” including some with a plaster interior, four-holes and even a basement.

Outhouses on the tour are found at the John Brainerd House, Levi Ward Tavern, Ezra Kelsey House, Merwin House, Sears-Usher House, Nathan Fuller House and Thankful Arnold House.

Tickets are $10 per person and can be purchased the day of the tour at the Thankful Arnold House Museum, 14 Hayden Hill Road where visitors will pick up their maps and visit Thankful’s necessary.


Annual Meeting- Tobacco in Connecticut
May 18, 2017, Thursday
6:30 pm- Business Meeting, 7:00 pm- PROGRAM
Fire Station #1, 439 Saybrook Road, Higganum, CT

Brianna Dunlap, former director of the Connecticut Valley Tobacco Museum and author of Connecticut Valley Tobacco, will talk on how Cigar tobacco runs in the blood of Connecticut River Valley farmers. It is the story of the people—the farmers and field hands—who made tobacco the soul of the valley.

Camp Filley Walk with Rob Butterworth
Saturday, May 20 at 10 am
90 to 120 minutes
Meet at Beaver Meadow Commuter Parking Lot to carpool

Dress for on and off trail including supportive footwear, hat and long sleeves and pants. Tick repellant highly suggested. Following our January program on Camp Filley and Connecticut’s CCC program in the 1930’s, Rob Butterworth will guide a tour of the former camp now located in Cockaponsett State Forest. Rain date is May 21, same time.



Museum Recieves grant from The Community Foundation of Middlesex County

The Haddam Historical Society is pleased to announce that it has received a $1250 grant from the Community Foundation of Middlesex County. The Society will use the funds to support the design and publication of an informational brochure on herbs grown in the Thankful Arnold House’s historic kitchen garden. The brochure will provide visitors with a useful pamphlet that will educate about the importance of 19 th century kitchen garden, promote the benefits of gardening today and improve the visitor experience.

The Wilhelmina Arnold Barnhart Garden is an interpretive herb garden that displays plants that the widow Thankful Arnold would have used around 1830. The garden is a member of Connecticut’s Historic Gardens and the museum is listed on the Connecticut’s Women’s Heritage Trail.

The Community Foundation of Middlesex County is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life in Middlesex County and to help Good People Do Great Things. Its two-fold mission is: (1) to work with charitably-minded individuals and organizations to build permanent endowments and other charitable funds; and (2) to support local nonprofit organizations through effective grant making, in order to address community needs, as well as Let Good Grow. Since its founding in 1997, the Community Foundation has provided 1,815 grants, totaling more than $5.4 million, to organizations for the arts, cultural and heritage programs, educational activities, environmental improvements, and for health and human services.

For more information on the Community Foundation of Middlesex County visit:

For more information on Connecticut’s Historic Gardens visit: https://www.

To learn more about the Thankful Arnold House and Wilhelmina Arnold Barnhart Garden visit:

CT’s Historic Gardens Announces Winner of 2017 Historic Gardens Day Poster Art Contest

Connecticut’s Historic Gardens, a group of 15 distinctive historic sites and gardens dotted throughout the state, is pleased to announce Connecticut artist Leif Nilsson of Chester, CT as the winner of the fourth annual Historic Gardens Day Poster Art Contest. This contest gives local artists a chance to showcase their talents while advertising CT Historic Gardens Day, an important, statewide event. The group began the contest to encourage Connecticut artists to visit and capture these historically significant homes with beautiful gardens. They hope that these sites will provide inspiring subjects for their art. Along with a cash prize, the winning artist receives widespread exposure – at the annual Connecticut Flower & Garden Show (February 23-26, 2016, booth 413), at each of the 15 Connecticut’s Historic Gardens sites throughout the year, and at Connecticut’s Historic Gardens Day itself, an event that attracts thousands of garden lovers throughout the state and beyond. This year’s Historic Gardens Day takes place on Sunday, June 25, 12-4 pm; visit for details on activities offered at each site. 

 Contest winner Leif Nilsson of Chester, CT, paints in an impressionistic style, en plein air to capture the beautiful surroundings of the Lower Connecticut River Valley where he calls home. Leif (pronounced Layf) studied art at the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts in Old Lyme, CT from 1980 through 1986, and continued his education on several sojourns to Scandinavia, Asia Minor and Europe. His painting style reflects the influence of early 19 th and 20 th century painters Monet and Bonnard for their use of color; Pissarro and Vuillard for composition and Van Gogh for his energy. Leif has been a successful working artist for over 20 years. He exhibits his works at several galleries throughout the United States, as well as in his own studio in Chester, CT, Leif Nilsson Spring Street Studio and Gallery. You can see his works on his website or visit the artist’s studio at 1 Spring Street, Chester, CT, which is open weekends from noon to 6:00 pm.

The winning painting was inspired by the gardens at Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme, and was painted there during the filming of the special production “Artists in the Garden, American Impressionism and the Garden Movement”.


















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