P.T. Barnum was born in Bethel in 1810, in a home on Greenwood Avenue that still stands today.

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Barnum was a world-renowned entertainer and driving force behind the Barnum & Bailey Circus among many accomplishments. Barnum left his mark all over the NY & CT and is one of the most talked about historical figures in the Greater Danbury area.

Bridgeport, CT is home to the Barnum Museum where his life and work are celebrated.

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The Museum launched its own Youtube Channel awhile back and they share informative and fun videos about Barnum, one of the most recent was uploaded on December 13, 2021 and features Writer & Historian Betsy Golden Kellem.

In the video, Golden Kellem shares some facts about P.T. Barnum. One example was that he loved elephants so much he "employed" one at his Bridgeport residence. The elephant was responsible for plowing the fields.

People who learned of this would inundate Barnum with questions about the unique practice but Barnum would advise people against elephant farming, citing the cost of feeding the animals among other things.

Some of the most popular articles I write are about Greater Danbury area history, so naturally I keep writing more and the research for these articles has taught me a lot about Barnum in the past few years.

The articles became such a hit, our sister station added a history feature to their radio show with Mike Allen called "The Place You Live." Mike has done several episodes of the segment that feature Barnum so he's taught us a lot about him as well.

The man is fascinating but my favorite factoid is about Bethel, CT. Bethel is proud to be the birthplace of P.T. Barnum and you can see evidence of that everywhere. His name is on road signs.

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There is a square named for him.

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His birth home at 55 Greenwood Avenue has been preserved and stands today.

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Yes, Bethel loves its favorite son Phineas Taylor Barnum. There's just one problem with that, Bethel didn't officially exist as a town when Barnum was born, it was actually part of Danbury at that time. The region was called Bethel but It was more like a borough of Danbury. It wasn't until 1855 that Bethel was incorporated as a town, independent of Danbury.

The gallery below features a jail whose predecessor was home to P.T. Barnum for about a month.

44 Images From Inside the Haunting + Historic Old Jail in Danbury

Rich history and survival is the story of Danbury's Old Jail. It's historical significance in the Hat City is unquestionable, and many residents know some of the facts. What people may not know, is that it took great effort on the part of many Danbury residents to keep it protected. It's not a miracle that it stands today, it's a result of hard work and respect for the City's narrative. Here I share with you some of the facts that make the Old Jail special, the work it took to keep it intact and why I found the space haunting. 

Visual Guide of Mark Twain's Redding + Hartford , CT Homes and Years

Mark Twain lived in CT for nearly 20 years, he owned homes in Hartford and Redding. Twain even purchased a second Redding home for his daughter. During his CT years he wrote classics like; "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer", "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" and "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court."

Each week on the Ethan and Lou Radio Show we are joined in the studio by Mike Allen for a segment we call: "The Place You Live." Mike brings his research findings with him and shares another amazing local story, this week, it was all about Mark Twain's ties to the Constitution State. This is a visual guide of Mark Twain's footprint on Connecticut.

Exploring Beyond the Rusty Gates of Danbury's Oldest Cemetery on Wooster Street

I live just down the block from the Wooster Street Cemetery and whenever I pass, I am always struck at how odd it is. You have this quiet, beautiful place that is dedicated to the people who were buried there, in the middle of a busy city and almost no one ever goes there. I decided to go take a deeper look around and see what was beyond the iron gates and stone walls. 

Danbury in Photos 2021

It's that time of year where media outlets inundate you with a braggard list of all the work they've done for the year. By December, everyone is pretty much out of ideas anyway. This is sort of like that. The following are photos I took of Danbury, CT for stories I wrote about the Hat City in 2021.