An Extraordinary Vision: Photographs by Marie Hartig Kendall

Photographer Marie Hartig Kendall chronicled the town of Norfolk, and its environs, in striking images just before and after the turn of the 20th century. Arriving in Norfolk in 1884, she avidly set about capturing the town and its inhabitants in all phases of life. Her images captured moving locomotives, historic weather events, economic development, and bucolic pastimes, as the once sleepy little village flourished into a summer resort at the turn of the century. The Norfolk Historical Society's 2018 exhibition will feature many of Marie's original photographs, including three large framed collections of photos that won her top honors at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Our 2018 Marie Kendall exhibition will run weekends 1:00 - 4:00PM Memorial Day - Columbias Day.


Norfolk in the Great War

One hundred years ago on April 6, 1917, the United States entered the Great War. Life in Norfolk quickly changed. The Norfolk unit of the Connecticut Home Guard mustered with 58 enlisted men. The Eldridge Gymnasium (now Town Hall) became an armory and the setting for outdoor drills with a rifle range set up on the rocky ledge behind Fox Hill, home of the Bridgman family on Litchfield Road. Dr. Dennis offered the use of his hilltop bungalow as an observation station and four acres of land for the cultivation of crops. Throughout the war, Norfolk was active on the home front with women sewing surgical dressings, knitting hospital garments, and canning for food conservation. Fund-raising drives, rummage sales, and benefit entertainments became monthly events. 79 young men and one woman from Norfolk served in the military. Eight lost their lives.

The exhibition Norfolk in the Great War documents activities in Norfolk on the home front as well as the thoughts and experiences of Norfolk servicemen and women through diaries, letters written home from the front lines, and military service questionnaires completed by war veterans. There are also stories about Norfolk men who played a pivotal role during the war, men such as Frederic Walcott who traveled to Poland in 1916 as a member of the United States Commission and wrote about the devastation and decimation of the Polish people. And there is the unique story of the Norfolk man who was impersonated by a German spy. A collection of stunning original World War I posters is featured in the exhibition.

The exhibition opens Saturday, May 27, and is open Saturdays and Sundays from 1:00 to 4:00 pm until Columbus Day.


Hidden in Plain Sight: Artists, Artisans & Craftsmen of Norfolk’s Golden Age of Architecture

The 2016 exhibition highlights a remarkable group of public buildings commissioned by Norfolk’s civic-minded patrons in the period 1880-1930, especially the details of their stunning artistry and craftsmanship. The exhibition coincides with several present-day restoration projects of some of Norfolk’s public building fabric.


A Farmer, a Sportsman and a Diplomat: The Romance of Collecting in Norfolk


From the Mills to Main Street: Irish Families in Norfolk


From Village Hall to Infinity Hall: 130 Years of Culture, Commerce, and Community


A Photographer in the Northwest Hills: Frank DeMars & Postcards of Norfolk


Covenant & Community: The Church of Christ in Norfolk


Great Mountain Forest: A Century of Conservation


Of African and Princely Descent: Norfolk’s Black History