Greenwich History

A Short History of Greenwich

Greenwich is the 10th oldest town in Connecticut. Named after Greenwich, England, the town began as a temporary trading post founded by Captain Adrian Block in 1614. Greenwich was established in 1640 when the area now known as Old Greenwich was purchased from the Indians as part of the New Haven Colony. At that time the town’s allegiance was to England. The settlers grew restless under the Puritan influence, and in 1642 the settlers withdrew their allegiance to England and transferred it to the more liberal Dutch. At this time, the Cos Cob section of Greenwich was occupied by the Siwanoy Indians and a toll gate was set up between them and the central part of Greenwich, called Horseneck. In about 10 years the town was forced back under the domination of the New Haven Colony. In 1672, the Horseneck portion of Greenwich was purchased from the Siwanoy. It was called Horseneck because the neck of land now known as “Field Point” was commonly used as a horse pasture. Greenwich supported the British during the French and Indian war; however, during the Revolution, the town was sacked several times by the King’s troops. The advent of the New Haven Railroad in 1848 began the transformation of Greenwich into a residential community. This period saw many wealthy New Yorkers, including Boss Tweed, building summer homes. In the twenties the town began to grow rapidly and land values began to soar. By 1928, Greenwich led the nation in per capita wealth. Although the population growth has abated (primarily because of the scarcity of buildable land), the property values have continued to climb.


Preserving Greenwich

Children of the American Revolution

Mary Bush Society, Putnam Cottage, 243 East Putnam Avenue

Daughters of the American Revolution

Putnam Hill Chapter, 243 East Putnam Avenue, 203.869.9697

Greenwich Library Oral History Project

Greenwich Preservation Trust

Historic District Commission

Historical Society of the Town of Greenwich

39 Strickland Road, Cos Cob, 203.869.6899