HOW IT GOT ITS NAME: The land was taken from the western part of Hartford, which was founded in 1637, and incorporated as a separate town in 1854.
LOOK IT UP: Lexicographer and author
was born in West Hartford in 1758. His "Blue-Backed Speller," published in 1783, was used to teach English into the 1900s, and his 1828 "An American Dictionary of the English Language" was the forefather of today's Merriam-Webster dictionary. Webster's childhood home was restored and opened to the public as a museum in the late 1960s.
NOTABLE RESIDENTS: Famous residents have included American skeleton racer Jimmy Shea, who won the Gold medal at the 2002 Winter
; meteorologist Edward Lorenz, a pioneer of chaos theory who coined the term "butterfly eect"; Korczak Ziolkowski, who helped carve Mount Rushmore; author