New England Firsts in America

New England Firsts in America
New England boasts claim to many of America's "firsts". From sports to innovation, find out which state passed the first automobile law, produced the first insurance company, alarm clock, shopping mall, auto race, circus and more.


Connecticut

  • 1728 First steel mill in America located in Simsbury
  • 1809 First woman to receive a U.S. patent - Mary Kies
  • 1810 First insurance company, ITT Hartford Group, Inc.
  • 1858 First can opener
  • 1868 First tape measure
  • 1887 First torpedo boat - Stiletto
  • 1895 First hamburger
  • 1901 First automobile law was passed - The speed limit was set at 12 miles per hour.
  • 1939 First helicopter
  • 1948 First color television
  • 1954 First nuclear powered submarine - Groton

Massachusetts

  • 1621 First Thanksgiving Day celebrated - Plymouth
  • 1634 First public park - Boston Common
  • 1636 First college established - Harvard
  • 1886 First town in the world to have electric street lights - Great Barrington
  • 1891 First basketball game was played – Springfield
  • 1895 First Volleyball game was played – Springfield
  • 1897 First subway system – Boston
  • First bible, dictionary and commercial valentine - printed in Worcester Ma

New Hampshire

  • 1719 First potato planted in the United States – Londonderry
  • 1787 First alarm clock
  • 1833 First free public library in the United States - Peterborough
  • 1908 First credit union
  • 1923 First American in space - Alan Shepard
  • 1938 First aerial passenger tramway - Franconia Notch
  • First snowmobile

Rhode Island

  • 1638 First Baptist Church in America
  • 1652 First law against slavery
  • First Afro-American regiment to fight for America against the British in the Battle of Rhode Island.
  • First woman to establish a town in America – Portsmouth - Anne Hutchinson
  • First street in the country to use gas-illuminated streetlights - Pelham Street in Newport
  • 1774 First circus – Newport
  • 1828 First shopping mall – Providence
  • 1876 First Polo game
  • 1887 First torpedo boat "Stiletto" was built in Bristol
  • 1895 First auto race – Newport

Vermont

  • 1785 First marble quarry - South Dorset
  • 1802 First canal - Bellows Falls
  • 1823 First African-American to receive a degree from an American College - Alexander Twilight
  • 1846 First US Postage stamp is printed – Brattleboro
  • 1934 First ski tow in the US - Woodstock.
  • 1940 First Social Security benefits check - $22.54 to Ida May Fuller





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Content copyright © 2021 by Lynn Newcomb Gaziano. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Lynn Newcomb Gaziano. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Michelle da Silva Richmond for details.