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Fairfield, Connecticut Vital Records
Births, Deaths, & Marriages 
1639 - 1850

Order item B153
The book is 120 pages, not indexed, names listed alphabetically, soft cover with a plastic comb binding, and available for $19.98 + $3.99 shipping & handling charge (Add $1.00 S&H for each additional volume ordered).

Early Fairfield

     In the fall of 1639, Roger Ludlow, one of the founders of the colony of Connecticut, led a small group of men and a large herd of cattle to the shore of Long Island Sound. At a place known to the local Indians as Unquowa, they established a settlement that became known as Fairfield, named for the hundreds of acres of salt marsh that bordered the coast. The marsh provided a plentiful supply of feed for the livestock and abandoned Indian fields became the site of the settlers' first agricultural plots. In the intervening years between those early days of settlement and today, much has occurred to change the face of Fairfield. Yet the town continues to bear the imprint of those who came before us.

     Driving along U.S. Route One, the Boston Post Road, we follow the trail of a foot path which once connected the Indian villages along Long Island Sound. For thousands of years native Americans have dwelt in this area, following a seasonal movement from the hillsides in winter in search of game to the seashore in summer to fish and plant their corn. At the time of contact with Europeans in the early seventeenth century, the local Indians were known as the Unquowas, for the area in which they lived, which is thought to mean "the place beyond". The Unquowas were a small clan of the Paugussett tribe, which was centered in southwestern Connecticut. By the time of Ludlow's settlement, the population of these Indians had been severely decimated by diseases introduced by the early explorers. They made little resistance to Ludlow's claim of all the land from the Saugatuck River in the west to the Stratford bounds (now Park Avenue) in the east and a day's march inland from the Sound - a distance of approximately twelve miles.

     The founding of Fairfield was not without conflict, however. Roger Ludlow had first seen this area in 1637 when as one of a band of settler-soldiers, he had pursued a group of Pequot Indians to a swamp in Southport. There, the Pequots made a last stand in a brief but bloody war caused by their resistance to settlers expansion into the Pequot's territory in eastern Connecticut. The battle is commemorated by a monument on the Post Road in Southport.


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