West Hartford’s ‘Thursday Throwback’

Courtesy of Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society.

Test your knowledge of West Hartford history with this ‘Thursday Throwback,’ courtesy of the Noah Webster House and West Hartford Historical Society.

By Ronni Newton

Courtesy of Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society.

Courtesy of Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society.

“Throwback Thursday” (#tbt) has become a popular feature on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media sites. It’s so much fun to see the images of our friends back in their elementary school days, photos of babies who are now in college, unfortunate fashion choices from the ’80s, and much more.

We-Ha.com takes its own historical look back at the town with “Thursday Throwback.” We will feature images of people, places, and events in West Hartford, and we’d love to have your feedback.

Last week we took a little break from featuring long-ago throwback images to recall the October snowstorm that happened exactly three years earlier. Much of West Hartford’s outward appearance bounced back so quickly from that event (although not without Herculean effort on the part of Public Works and residents, and funding from FEMA), but Thowback Thursday is a great time to look back and remember, as many of you did.

Two weeks ago, we featured a photo of a group of buildings and asked for your comments. Astute history buff Rick Liftig did not hesitate in correctly identifying those structures with the following comment:

“It will be a pleasure to be the first on this one. This is the Goodwin Pottery factory in Elmwood, probably mid 1800’s. The view is looking towards the Southeast from New Britain Avenue, probably from the area around Sheehan’s Funeral Home. Several of those buildings are still in existence in use by Abbott Ball. The area around the Trout Brook (and throughout the town) had an abundance of high quality clay which was used both in earthenware (Goodwin’s Pottery) and brickmaking. I have always wondered if native American clay artifacts are waiting to be discovered somewhere along the banks of the Trout Brook.”

Rick’s response was complimented by another local history buff, Mike Margolis, with the following response: “Nice one Rick. We live in a 250 year old West Hartford home, and our gardens are lined with bricks that say KANE from the Michael Kane Brick Co on Kane St (where else?) I guess the clay soil in the southeast part of town was great stuff!”

This week’s photo has some color to it. Do you know where this is?

Please add your comments below about the featured photo, and we will publish the answers along with next Thursday’s image.

Thank you to the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society for providing us with the images. For more information about the organization, visit www.noahwebsterhouse.org.

Like what you see here? Click here to subscribe to We-Ha’s newsletter so you’ll always be in the know about what’s happening in West Hartford!

Courtesy of Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society.

Courtesy of Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society.

Courtesy of Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society.

The Goodwin Pottery Factory in Elmwood. Courtesy of Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About the author


We-Ha.com is the place to go for the latest information about West Hartford – a town that "has it all"! We-Ha.com is part of and proud of our community, and we bring a hyperlocal focus to news and features about the people, schools, businesses, real estate, sports, restaurants, charitable events, arts, and more. Contact us at: [email protected] or [email protected]


  • Chuck Coursey beat me to it on facebook. I agree with him – it must be the intersection of Farmington Avenue and s/n Main Street many years ago. I believe that is the old First Church to the right of the picture. This photo would have been looking from present day Bank of America towards the opposite corner where Bruegger’s bagels is today (Goodwin Green is on the left). Must have been the late 1800’s. Good one, Ronni!

  • Look at the leaves out at the curb waiting for collection !!…. *cough*….Good one guys!..I recall when they built the Vets Memorial on the church site in about 2006. I found many bricks,clay drain pipe and granite and assumed they came from the old church. If you look very closely at the green you can see a small tree in the middle of the green to the left of the elm.I will bet it is the big oak that grows there now!

Leave a Comment

Translate »