A Digital Journey Through Local History


Last weekend I got to work at the Colt 200 Bash at Colt Park in Hartford. It was pretty cool, we had a life size cutout of Samuel Colt and a birthday card that the staff of Connecticut State Library signed. Our table was full of freebies like postcards for the “100 Years: Documenting Connecticut’s Role in World War 1” project I am running.

We also had a bunch of stuff from iCONN.iCONN

The kids that came to our table knew about iCONN. Their parents – not so much. Actually, most of the adults who stopped at our table had no idea what iCONN was.

So what is iCONN you ask?

iCONN is part of the Connecticut Education Network. It provides all students, faculty and residents with online access to essential library and information resources. It is administered by the Connecticut State Library in conjunction with your local library. Through iCONN, a core level of information resources including secured access to licensed databases is available to every citizen in Connecticut. In addition, specialized research information is available to college students and faculty.

And it has some really cool stuff – that’s free so long as you have a library card from a public library in Connecticut! You can search the catalogs of over 400+ libraries in the state from one place.

Stuff like HeritageQuest, which has all sorts of old history books and family histories free to read or download. Oh yeah there are also all the U.S. Federal Census records. You don’t have to subscribe to Ancestry.com or go to your public library to access them, because they are here.

There are newspapers too. There is the Hartford Courant, Christian Science Monitor, New York Times, LA Times, Wall Street Journal & Washington Post.

Then there are all the journals and magazines, especially helpful if you have kids. There are some great age-appropriate resources for them. They even have database searches geared for elementary, middle & high schoolers.

So I encourage you to take a look, you may find something you didn’t know you were missing!


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