Jobs in New Britain, 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.
NEW BRITAIN – Hardware City
Portrait of Contemporary New Britain
With a population of 72,500 New Britain is the eighth largest city in the state of Connecticut. It is located in Hartford County 9 miles southwest of Hartford, and is the southernmost city in the ‘Knowledge Corridor’ of Greater Hartford CT and Greater Springfield MA.
The current population is comprised mainly of Non-Hispanic Whites (48%),Hispanics (all races, 37%) and Black African-Americans (11%). Hartford County is relatively affluent but New Britain is relatively poor. Median household income is well below both the US and the state averages.
Unemployment is quite high, and although cost of living is relatively low, nearly a quarter of the population lives in poverty. New Britain is home to the Hospital of Central Connecticut (the city’s largest employer), Hospital for Special Care, Grove Hill Medical Center and Moore Medical as well as Central Connecticut State University (the state’s oldest public university, formerly the Teachers’ College of Connecticut) and Charter Oak State College (a public liberal arts college).
The city has the largest Polish population of any in Connecticut, and the Polish community has been instrumental in revitalizing the downtown area both culturally and economically. In 2008 the Broad Street neighborhood was officially designated as ‘Little Poland.’
The Connecticut River Valley consists of an alluvial floodplain bordered by hilly rural terrain. New Britain lies among soft, rolling hills, covered with young Connecticut forest and brushy woods. The many parks are populated with trees and New Britain’s streets also have many trees lining the sides of the roads. The climate is continental, with four distinct seasons.
Early History and Industrial Revolution
New Britain was settled in 1687 and chartered as a city two centuries later, in 1871.The city’s Broad Street neighborhood has been home to Polish businesses and families since 1890 and by 1930 a quarter of the city was ethnically Polish. The city’s official nickname is ‘Hardware City’ because of its history as a manufacturing center for door bolts and other security products, wrought-iron hardware, coat hangers, planes, levels, rules, and hand tools.
Stanley’s Bolt Manufactory and the Stanley Rule and Level Company merged in 1920, becoming the Stanley Works. The company won an Army-Navy award for wartime production, and has thrived ever since. In 2010 The Stanley Works merged with Black and Decker, a Maryland –based manufacturer of power tools, and located the global headquarters of Stanley Black & Decker, now a Fortune 500 manufacturing conglomerate, in New Britain.
Amenities and Cultural Attractions
Interesting things to do include New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain Industrial Museum, New Britain Youth Museum, Walnut Hill Park and Rose Garden designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, New Britain Symphony Orchestra (founded by Teachers’ College professors in 1948), Hole in the Wall Theater, and The Repertory Theater of New Britain (opened in 1955 and currently used by the Connecticut Theater Company for performances, youth programs and theater education).The city also boasts a major league soccer team, a minor league baseball team and youth baseball programs.
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