Jobs in Danbury, Connecticut, United States
Congregationalists founded the first English colony in central Connecticut in 1636 and soon settled throughout the state. They obtained a royal charter in 1662 and governed until 1818. The state has a strong maritime tradition. During the 19th century it also became a major center for financial services and manufacturing.
Irish and southeastern European immigrants came to work in the factories and introduced Catholicism. In the 1950s and 60s, economic expansion led to an influx of Puerto Rican and African-American workers, but 71 percent of the state’s population of 3.5 million is still non-Hispanic and white, and their religious traditions remain influential. Ending of the Cold War and endemic corruption led to a period of late-20th century decline, but since 2008 the economy has begun to rebound.
Finance, insurance and real estate now account for a third of the state’s GDP. manufacturing, the arts and tourism are also important. Affluent communities within commuting distance from New York make Connecticut a high-income state, but wealth is unevenly distributed and many older industrial cities are now impoverished.
DANBURY – Hat City
Portrait of Contemporary Danbury
With a population of 85,000, Danbury is the seventh largest city in the state of Connecticut. It is located in Fairfield County, a heavily urbanized metropolitan area in western Connecticut on the northern shoe of Long Island Sound. Non-Hispanic Whites (53%) and Hispanics (all races, 31%) together account for 84 percent of the current population.
Danbury and its suburbs constitute an integrated inland labor market. The commuting distance to New York is long, but quite a few residents do it. Fairfield is an affluent county, and Danbury is a relatively affluent city. Median household income is well above the US average and just slightly below the state average, while unemployment is quite low and poverty, though higher than the state average, is still relatively low.
Although the cost of living is somewhat high, the city is appealing for both young singles and young families with a good income. Affordable large houses with large lots, excellent schools, many ethnic festivals, and a hip downtown scene are all attractions. Danbury benefited from the general post-WWII economic boom and in 1965, the city absorbed outlying areas.
The work force is now employed in a diversity of occupations. The largest employers are Western Connecticut Health Network, Boehringer-Ingelheim (a global pharmaceuticals company), Danbury Public Schools and Cartus (a relocation company for business clients). There are three institutions of higher education and a low-security Federal Correctional Institution. Danbury today is an attractive city with a diverse commercial base, low crime and many amenities, combining a rural New England feel with a vibrant city lifestyle.
Danbury is located along the Still River in the rolling foothills of the Berkshire Mountains just south of Candlewood Lake, with abundant parks, campsites and hiking and skiing trails nearby. Summers are hot and humid and winters cold with significant snowfall, but spring and autumn are mild and pleasant.
Early History and Industrial Revolution
The town of Danbury was established in 1702 and played an important role in the American Revolution. During the 19th century the production of fur hats developed into a large-scale industry. Danbury incorporated as a city in 1889, and shortly thereafter, the large hat factories shifted to supplying hat bodies to smaller hat shops, which finished them with a variety of materials.
At the turn of the century Danbury was supplying a quarter of the nation’s hats and three-quarters of its hat bodies. During the 1920s demand for hats began to decline and the Danbury hat industry contracted, eventually disappearing entirely in 1987.
Amenities and Cultural Attractions
A large shopping center, the Danbury Fair Mall, was built on the city’s former fairgrounds in 1986.Ten years later a large carousel was installed and the mall began to sponsor youth-oriented activities and special events. It was refurbished in 2008, and is now one of the largest upscale malls in the state.
There are seventeen parks with several short hiking trails, playgrounds, and sport fields; Danbury Ice Arena; and a high-rated municipal golf course. The city promotes the arts, history, and culture as primary drivers of the economy as well as enriching influences, with special emphasis on the performing arts. Besides the Main Street Historic District and the Danbury Railway Museum in the former Union Station, there are a number of other listed places of historical interest.
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