juanfranciscomurphy. The North End of Hartford, Come by Here, 2010. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tblFuGn1OS8.



Our research group took a tour of the history of Constitution Plaza and it explained why it looks the way it does today. Constitution Plaza was historically a community with residential units and small businesses. The community was forced to leave in the 1960s from “slum clearance” programs and was replaced with a Commercial Plaza that was designed to be blocked from the rest of Hartford. 

 The North End in the early 1900’s was a predominantly Jewish community. The first black community didn’t come to the North End until the 40’s when the city began its “slum clearance” program. The program developed two public housing complexes for some of the residents in downtown Hartford that were forced to relocate. One was in West Hartford and the other was in the North End. Due to segregation, only white residents were permitted to live in West Hartford, while the rest were forced to move to the North End. Following the “slum clearance” the state issued a highway development program that forced more residents of Hartford to relocate into the North End. The North End became the home of 80% of the Black community in Hartford and many were forced to move there because of redlining and segregation 1 After the passage of the fair housing act, many of the wealthy residents left the North End and moved to Bloomfield while white residents of Bloomfield or the North End moved to West Hartford. The move was mostly a push by redlining and realtors who refused to sell in West Hartford to people of color. Later, 7 out of 8 major realtor companies in Connecticut were sued by the federal government for illegal discrimation practices. 2 The North End became the highest concentration of poverty in Hartford. There were attempts to redevelop the area with funding in different programs. Millions of federal dollars were invested in the Parker Memorial hoping that a community center would bring more investment into the area. 3 However, it did not. Almost 15 years after the opening of the center, it was closed for $200,000 of renovations because of the constant vandalization of the building. Even when the building was open, the community had offered less than 30 hours of services. For the center to be successful, the community needed to be involved, otherwise the center is just another building. 4 We had also met with the Blue Hills NRZ chair, Donna Thompson-Daniel. She explained that the Blue Hills community, which is part of the North End but considers themselves separate, has its own community center that offers a variety of programs. The programs proved to effectively help children in the area to get jobs or pursue higher education, a goal of the Parker Memorial center that was never achieved. 

The North end has faced many problems from banks in its history. The Hartford Courant in the 1980s found that businesses were three times more likely to be rejected for loans if they were located in the North End. 5 After that static was released a bank released an article claiming that that the North End failed itself by never applying to loan programs offered but two years later this bank was closed for fraud. History has repeatedly shown that the community and Hartford has failed to build the North End. Over the years, the North End still has some of the highest poverty rates and lowest homeownership. 


  1. Eaton, Susan. (2020). A steady habit of segregation: The Origins and Continuing Harm of Separate and Unequal Housing and Public Schools in Metropolitan Hartford, Connecticut https://prrac.org/pdf/hartford-segregation-report-2020.pdf
  2. Putterman, A. (2021). West Hartford is mostly white, while Bloomfield is largely black. How that came to be tells the story of racism and segregation in American suburbs.
  3. Morse, C. F. J. (1960, Mar 20). Model for the nation: Hartford’s million dollar north end center represents a pioneer project in the field of community services. The Hartford Courant (1923-) Retrieved from http://ezproxy.trincoll.edu/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/model-
  4. Have vandals won? (1979, Feb 26). The Hartford Courant (1923-) Retrieved from http://ezproxy.trincoll.edu/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/have-vandals-won/docview/545638334/se-2?accountid=14405
  5. Wilson, G. (1989, Oct 31). Banks, and loans, are hard to find in Hartford’s north end. The Hartford Courant (1923-) Retrieved from http://ezproxy.trincoll.edu/login?url=https://www.proquest.com/historical-newspapers/banks-loans-are-hard-find-hartfords-north-end/docview/1638360418/se-2?accountid=14405

Deprecated: Directive 'allow_url_include' is deprecated in Unknown on line 0