Local History
Town of Vernon
City of Rockville


Vernon’s Rockville section, once known as the “Loom City,” is listed on the National Register of Historic Places for its role in the development of the American woolen industry. Powered by the waters of the Hockanum River, Rockville’s textile mills made Vernon a thriving industrial center from the early 19th century until the last mill closed in 1951. The Rockville Public Library has an extensive Local History collection covering the Town of Vernon’s development.

Local History works (call numbers beginning with LH) and some Connecticut reference works (numbers beginning with R) are located in the Community Room in the library. Please ask staff for these items. You will be asked to leave your driver’s license with staff during the time that you are working with these items. Most reference titles are located in the reference room. Works in both of these collections may be used only in the library.

*Parentheses around LH or R indicate that the library also owns a circulating copy


The “classic” on local history is George S. Brookes’ Cascades and Courage (1955)—LH 974.64 BRO; R 974.64 BRO; circulating copies, 974.64 BRO. A good overview of Vernon history is provided in Vernon, Our Town (Vernon Historical Society, 1989)—LH 974-64 VER; R 974.64 VER; circulating copies, 974.64 VER.  Written for school children, it covers major developments in town history. Other general history titles include:

Boys from Rockville:  Civil War Narratives by Benjamin Hirst *(LH) B HIRST
Building the Loom City by Ardis Abbott  (1998)  *(LH, R) 974.64 ABB
Burpee’s the Story of Connecticut, vol 2. (1939)  R 974.64 BUR
Centennial of Vernon (Rockville), souvenir program (1908) LH 974.64 CEN
Century of Vernon, Connecticut, 1808-1908 LH 974.64 CEN
Early Reminiscences of Rockville, CT, in Rhyme by Frank D. Maine (1908) LH 974.64 MAI
 History of Rockville by William Cogswell (1872) LH 974.64 COG
History of Tolland County by J.R. Cole  (1888) LH 974.64 COL
 History of Vernon & Rockville by Mrs. Gardner Stanley (1936) LH 974.64 STA
News and Views in Vernon… by Bruce G. Ronson (1952) LH 974.64 RON
Official Program of Rockville-Vernon Observance of the
Tercentenary of Connecticut… (1935) LH 974.64 OFF
175th Anniversary Official Souvenir Program (1983) LH 974.64 ONE
“Rockville,” Guide to the History and Historical Sites of Conn. (1937) LH 974.64 CRO
“Rockville,” Illustrated Review of Northeastern Conn. (1891) LH 974.64 ILL
Sesquicentennial of the Town of Vernon, Conn. (1958) LH 974.64 SES
Vernon & Historic Rockville by Ardis Abbott & Jean Luddy (1998) (LH, R) 974.64 ABB
Vernon & Rockville in the Olden Times by Celia E. Prescott (n.d.) LH 974.64 PRE
Vernon Bicentennial Commission Official Scrapbook (1977) LH 974.64 VER
Vernon Vignettes, vols. 1 & 2, by Hazel Lutz (1970s) LH 974.64 LUT
Vernon through the Years, 1808-1983 LH 974.64 VER


City of Rockville Historical District, U.S. Dept. of Interior (1984) LH 720 CIT
Survey of Architectural & Historical Resources,
Vernon Historical Society (1980) LH 720 SUR


History of Rockville Mills—articles (1867-1972) LH 974.64 HIS
Red Envelope, house organ of U.S. Envelope Company (1915-25) LH 974.64 LOG


Fox Hill War Memorial Tower & Henry Park (newspaper articles) LH 974.64 FOX
Learning from the Stones:  …Cemeteries as Social History LH 974.64 LUD
Old North Bolton Burial Ground LH 974.64 OLD
Rockville Hospital—articles LH 974.64 ROC
Snipsic Lake & Grove, souvenir program, 32nd season LH 974.64 SNI
Study of the Henry Opera House by E. William Gourd LH 974.64 GOU


Charles Ethan Porter (2 different works) *(LH) B PORTER
Christian Patriot:  …Col. Hugh Maxwell of Mass. LH B MAXWELL
Commemorative Biographical Record of Tolland & Windham Counties  LH 92 COM
Gene Pitney  *(LH) B PITNEY
Family Album by Elizabeth Goddard Davis  LH B GODDARD
In Memoriam:  George Sykes  LH B SYKES
Kelloggs in the Old World and the New  LH 929 HOP
Let’s Visit Rockville by Alma L.H. Steig LH 974.64 STI
Maxwell Family by Charles W. Burpee LH 92 BUR
Maxwell Family by Henry D. Maxwell LH 929 MAX
Memoirs of the Maxwells  of Pollok by William Fraser LH 92 FRA


Church of Christ in Vernon by Allyn Stanley Kellogg LH 974.64 KEL
Congregationalism in Rockville, Conn. by George Brookes LH 974.64 BRO
Diamond Jubilee of St. Joseph Church, 1905-1980 LH 974.64 DIA
St. Bernard Church, 125th Anniversary, 1854-1979 LH 974.64 SAI
St. Bernard Church 150th Jubilee Directory, 2004 LH 974.64 SAI
75th Anniversary Celebration, 1888-1963, Union Congregational Church of Christ (1963) LH 974.64 SEV
Trinity Lutheran Church:  Centennial, 1882-1982  LH 974.64 TRI
200th Anniversary Celebration of the First Congregational Church, 1762-1962 by Mildred S. Willes  LH 974.64 WIL


Glimpses of Rockville, Conn. (1902) LH 974.64 GLI
Looking Back:  Historic Images of North Central Conn. LH 974.64 LOO
Sesquicentennial 1808-1958 Photo Record LH 974.64 SES
Sesquicentennial of the Town of Vernon, scrapbook LH 974.64 SES
Souvenir of Rockville, Conn. (1908) LH 974.64 SOU
Souvenir of Rockville, Conn.:  Indelible Photographs LH 974.64 SOU
The 200th Anniversary of Vernon-Rockville LH 974-64 VER


Articles on Vernon’s centennial, Connecticut Magazine, 1908 LH 974.64 CON
“City of Rockville,” Connecticut Magazine, 1900 LH 974.64 CON
“Cogswell’s Great Fountain Crusade…,”  Yankee Magazine, Mar-71  LH 974.64 YAN

The Local History collection also contains information on such topics as finances, government, planning and development, ordinances, regulations, schools and statistics, as well as directories and reports for both the Town of Vernon and City of Rockville.  Back issues of local newspapers—Tolland County Journal, Rockville Journal, Rockville Leader and Tri-Town Reporter—are available on microfilm.


Additional information on Vernon/Rockville history is available at

            Vernon Historical Society

            734 Hartford Turnpike

            Vernon, CT  06066

            (860) 875-4326