New London, CT


City, seat of justice, together with Norwich, on New London Co, CT.  44 miles southeast of Hartford, 353 miles from Washington. Occupies a gentle elevation facing the southeast, on the west bank of the Thames river, three miles from its entrance into Long Island sound.  The ground on which it stands is rocky and rough, and seems to have discouraged the builders from attempting to construct it with regularity.  The houses erected within a few years, however, are superior to the rest, and the appearance of the town is much improved.

New London harbor is deep and convenient, although its entrance is narrow and might be easily blockaded, if it were not defended by two fortifications.  Fort Griswold, in Groton, opposite the city, and Fort Trumbull, one mile below, shared severely the struggles of the Revolution, and the former, especially, was the scene of bloody barbarities under Benedict Arnold, who in 1781, entered the harbor, took Fort Griswold and burned the town.  An obelisk of granite, 125 feet high, preserves the memory of the patriots who here suffered and died.

The business of the city is chiefly whale fishing and commerce; its tonnage is larger than that of any other town in the state.  The Worcester and Norwich railroad unites with the Thames at Allyn's Point, a few miles above.

Population: in 1810 was 3,238; in 1820 was 3,330; in 1830 was 4,356; in 1840 was 5,519 and in 1850 was 8,994