Flashback Photos: Southington, Conn., Memorial Day 1942

The Southington Memorial Day parade marches past the Town Hall. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

The Southington Memorial Day parade marches past the Town Hall. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

These Memorial Day photos of Southington, Conn., were taken by Fenno Jacobs during World War II for the Office of War Information. The town hall is on the lower left in this photo. They were used as wartime propaganda.

Jacobs was part of a team of photographers who spent the month in the town taking pictures of residents at work and at leisure. The photos were compiled into a booklet designed to show friends and enemies in Europe the traditions and values of typical American families. Thousands of copies were dropped over Europe from military planes during the Nazi occupation.

southington conn. memorial day spectators

Spectators at the Southington,Memorial Day parade. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

Southington, which is south of Hartford, was first settled in 1689 and was known as South Farmington, then Southington.

southington conn. memorial day parade

There weren’t many spectators because the area’s war factories didn’t close for the holiday. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

George Washington was the town’s first important visitor. He passed through Southington in 1770 on his way to Wethersfield.

southington conn memorial day salute

Saluting those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for their country. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

In 1781, Gen. Jean-Baptiste Donatien de Vimeur, Comte de Rochambeau, and his troops camped in the Marion section of Southington. Rochambeau and his officers were entertained at the Asa Barnes Tavern, which stands to this day.

southington conn. memorial day mass

The Catholic congregation gathered in the St. Thomas cemetery for an outdoor Mass. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

Southington was a farming community until the 19th century, when it developed as a manufacturing center. German, Polish and Italian immigrants came to work in the mills.

southington conn. memorial day bicycles2

Kids on bicycles. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

After World War II, Southington became a bedroom community and the population grew to over 42,000 people today.

southington conn. memorial day color guard

The color guard takes a rest. Photo courtesy Library of Congress.

This story was updated from the 2013 version.



  1. Molly Landrigan

    May 26, 2014 at 11:38 am

    Was glad to find out there was an acceptable reason for the smaller turnout for the parade.

  2. Louis Hale

    May 26, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    Larry Jardine. Amy Cotto

  3. Pingback: The Mystery of the Hartford Circus Fire Still Lingers, 75 Years Later - New England Historical Society

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