Truth be told, we liked the old name. Antiquarian & Landmarks Society sounded cultured, scholarly, full of New England reserve. The problem was that people couldn't figure out what the heck it did.
So as of Nov. 1, after 71 years, the society changed the name to Connecticut Landmarks. Officials hope the new name will convey a sharper message, which in turn will produce a higher profile, more support and more visitors.
If the new name helps get people out to the wonderful properties the group owns, we're for it.
Landmarks owns 12 historic properties across the state, dating from the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Nine are operated as historic homes; one is a working farm. Together they offer an unparalleled look at how people in Connecticut lived and worked, and what this state was all about.
The Joshua Hempsted house in New London dates from 1678, and is one of the oldest and best-documented homes in New England. The Nathan Hale homestead in Coventry was the home of the state's Revolutionary War hero. The Isham-Terry house is a tableau of life in late-Victorian Hartford. And on.
Most of the properties are closing for the season, though the Phelps-Hatheway house in Suffield and the Butler-McCook house in Hartford will be open and decorated for the holidays. So the real rollout for the new name will be next spring.
Go and see. It's not the name, it's the houses. They are priceless.
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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