Town Historian



William L. Brinton
Town Historian

Duties of the historian consist of collecting, preserving and making available materials relating to the history of the community, and preserving current records for the future. The town historian answers all inquiries regarding the Town, from dating a house, searching for ancestors, help for student research, land use history, media inquiries or other questions pertaining to the Town’s history. Information is obtained from: gravestone inscriptions, verbal and oral histories, photos, maps, books, manuscripts, statements and records of individuals, and newspapers.


Bethany Historical Society


What is the difference between a local historic district and a national register district or place?

Local Historic District is a geographic area within a community singled out for its architectural, historic, cultural or archaeological importance. Property in a historic district is protected from unsuitable change. A lot and the buildings on it are part of the historic landscape and remain essentially the same from the time the district is established. The State of Connecticut enacted legislation in 1961 to protect and preserve such areas by proclaiming them legal entities.

National Register of Historic Places are historic properties worthy of preservation because of “a quality of significance in American history, architecture, archaeology, engineering and culture…in districts, sites, buildings, structures and objects that possess location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling and association…with events that contributed to broad patterns of our history, with lives of significant individuals, with distinctive styles of architecture, or with information important to history or prehistory.”

What is the difference between the Town Historian and the Historical Society?

The Town Historian is authorized by the town to oversee the local historic districts, create new districts and advise the Planning & Zoning Commission on issues related to historic properties. The Historical Society of the Town of Bethany is a private not-for-profit organization that collects and preserves the cultural heritage and ongoing history of Bethany. They do have historic preservation programs, but they are not a Town agency.

What Bethany properties have been placed on the National Registers of Historic Places?

The Wheeler-Beecher or “Hoadley House”, built in 1807 was listed in 1976 due to its architectural and historic significance.

Is there a local Historical Society?

Yes, the Bethany Historical Society, Inc. is located at 512 Amity Road. Or visit their web site at:
Bethany Historical Society