We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
This is part of our week-long series on Bridgeport, CT.
Pic is the long-departed University Club of Bridgeport (1905) on Golden St., once filled with mostly Yalies at lunchtime.
Why was Bridgeport, CT so prosperous from 1830-1950? It was a major manufacturing city with a large seaport and a railroad. Its prominence as a center for shipping, medicine, law, news and radio, and banking followed from those. From a population of 20,000 in 1820, it peaked in the 1940s - near or below where it is now. Rise and fall.
Industrialization and the presence of the railroad made Bridgeport an ideal manufacturing center producing Bridgeport milling machines, saddles, corsets, carriages, brass fittings, sewing machines, and ammunition. By 1930, Bridgeport was an industrial center with more than 500 factories and a thriving immigrant population. In the late 20th century Bridgeport remained a manufacturing center, producing electrical and transportation equipment, plastics, and machine tools. Like other urban centers in Connecticut, Bridgeport fared less well during the deindustrialization of the United States in the 1970s and 80s.
Remington Arms and Ammunition Co. Union Metallic Cartridge Co. General Electric Warner Brother's Corset Co (now Warnaco) The Bead Chain Manufacturing Co. Singer Sewing Machine Sikorsky Aircraft AVCO-Lycoming Pratt and Whitney The Frisbie Pie Co. Columbia Gramaphone Mfg. Co. Lake Submarine Boat Co. The Locomobile Company of America (electric cars, then gas-powered) Bullard Machine Tool Co. Bridgeport Brass Co. Bridgeport Bronze Co. The Liberty Bicycle Co. Harvey Hubbell Co. (Bridgeport's HH invented the electric socket - and the pull-chain light socket among other things)
and hundreds more. There were abundant jobs for everyone, from unskilled to the most highly-skilled.
The bottom photo is probably some time around WWI, based on the automobile (on the right) and the woman's style of dress and hat (on the left). The image appears to be grainy enough that a larger print wouldn't be of much help.
While I'm not a Connecticut native, I have a lifetime connection with the state because my Mother's folks were New Yorkers who moved to New London not long after the '38 hurricane, when she was still a little girl. I have vivid memories of riding the train through the sharp S curve at Bridgeport, looking at Jenkins Valve and other factories in the area hard at work. It was quite an impressive sight.