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Franklin was once West Farms north of Norwich. The stage road was from the Norwich Town Green to Windham. In 1786 West Farms became Franklin and the following year it was voted that a town highway tax be payable in labor at 3 shilling per day for a man and 8 shilling for a man and a team of 4 good oxen and cart. In 1795the Hartford to Norwich Turnpike was chartered to connect the towns of Franklin, Lebanon, Columbia, Andover and Bolton. It was to have two toll gates. But in 1796a resoluntion was forwarded to the General Assembly that the inhabitants of Franklin
were” dissatisfied, aggrieved and injured by setting up a turnpike between Lebanon and Norwich and praying that such relief as consistent with wisdom, justice and equity be granted.”
Connecticut’s State Hero Nathan Hale was born in a previous house on this farm in 1755. The Hale family was dedicated to the cause of liberty and six of the eight sons served in the army. The homestead and farm prospered and allowed the Hales to provide food for soldiers.
Today, the Hale Homestead is part of Connecticut Landmarks.
One of four brothers who served as Revolutionary soldiers, Samuel Beaumont built a small farm house “four miles and 59 rods” from the original meeting house in Lebanon. It was moved to its current site in 1975.
The Beaumont House is owned by the Lebanon Historical Society.
Jonathan Trumbull Jr. served as the northern army’s paymaster general, and then as military secretary to General George Washington. He served with Washington at Yorktown and until the Treaty of Paris was signed in 1783. General Washington probably stayed in his house March 4, 1781.
The Trumbull Jr. House is owned by the Town of Lebanon and open to the public.
From 1775-1783, Gov. Jonathan Trumbull Sr. and the Council of Safety met more than 500 times at this small storehouse to plan Connecticut’s military, logistical, financial, and political actions during the American Revolution.
On September 6, 1781, Benedict Arnold’s forces attacked New London and Fort Griswold in Groton. The nearby home of Ebenezer Avery, himself severely wounded, served as a field hospital. It is said it took generations for the bloodstained floors to be worn away.
The Avery House is on the grounds of Ft. Griswold State Park, and administered by the Avery Memorial Association.
Merchant Christopher Leffingwell sided with the patriot cause, serving as a colonel in the Connecticut State Militia, and as a member of the Committee of Correspondence. Built in 1675, his house was probably enlarged to serve as a tavern, and was known for many years as the “Leffingwell Inn.”
The Leffingwell House Museum is open to the public for tours.
Nathaniel Shaw Jr. served as Connecticut’s Naval Agent, so throughout the Revolution the lavish Shaw Mansion served as headquarters for the state’s navy as well as sixty privateers. It was one of the few buildings to survive the burning of New London by Benedict Arnold in 1781. The Mansion is now the home of the New London County Historical Society.
The imposing monument in front of the Brooklyn Historical Society Museum commemorates Revolutionary War hero Israel Putnam, who was often credited for issuing the order, “Don’t fire until you see the whites of their eyes” at the Battle of Breed’s (Bunker) Hill.