Our Collections

The Ridgefield Historical Society is dedicated to collecting photos, documents, and objects that tell a story about the history of Ridgefield. Since 2002, when the collections originated,  Historical Society volunteers have carefully preserved over 10,000 pieces of Ridgefield’s past that are stored in archival materials and placed in our climate controled vault beneath the Scott House

Online Archive at Past Perfect

Many of the materials in our collections are searchable online through our Past Perfect online archive, which is a virtual “portal” into our physical archives. If you are looking for specific items that are not listed here or in Past Perfect, please contact us.

Digital Compendiums

A regularly updated collection of downloadable compendiums for researching history in Ridgefield, CT. These files may be viewed online or downloaded to your computer. The Encyclopedia and Timeline are updated and expanded regularly. All files are in searchable PDF format. Note that many of these files are large and may take a few seconds to download fully.

Maps

This collection contains maps of Ridgefield from the early 1700s to the early 2000s. Included is the 1867 Beers Atlas map and Whitlock’s 1912 map in addition to modern day maps of the town’s streets, historic districts, open space, zoning, school districts, and graveyards.

Books and Reports

A regularly updated collection of downloadable books and reports for researching history in Ridgefield, CT. These files may be viewed online or downloaded to your computer. All files are in searchable PDF format. Note that many of these files are large and may take a few seconds to download fully.

COVID-19 Collection

The Ridgefield Historical Society’s COVID-19 Collection is a record of the Coronavirus pandemic, declared in March 2020. The collection includes artifacts, drawings, photographs, videos, and other elements that represent this particular and unexpected time in Ridgefield history. From masks and face shields to images of empty grocery store shelves to first-hand accounts from local residents, the Collection is ongoing and new additions are welcome.

The Clarence Korker Collection

Clarence and Geraldine Korker operated a photo shop on Main Street for forty years from 1950-1990. During that time Clarence photographed weddings, family portraits, town events, streetscapes and more.

This valuable collection is a window into what the town looked like during that era and illustrates how its townspeople marked their family milestones by sitting for a Corker portrait. This Collection is not yet catalogued. 

Oral History

The Oral History collection preserves the memories of many of Ridgefield’s World War II veterans. They tell the stories of the war in Europe, the Pacific, and at home.

More than sixty audio recordings include photographs of the vets as young men and women and as older citizens relating their tales on tape. This Collection is currently being converted for online access.

Postcard of Lake Mamanasco

Postcard Collection

Ridgefield was considered a resort in the early days of the last century, and many postcards were printed at that time for travelers to send home. The Historical Society has a large collection of postcards of Ridgefield’s houses, roads, lakes, and other scenes from that era.

 

Historical Society library at the Scott House

Research Library

The histories of Ridgefield, its surrounding towns, Fairfield County, and Connecticut are stored in the Historical Society’s library, as well as sections on genealogy, families of Ridgefield, and Ridgefield’s historic graveyards.

Ridgefield High School yearbooks

Ridgefield High School Yearbooks

This yearbook collection ranges from 1945, when thirty-three students graduated, to present day, with a graduating class in the hundreds. The yearbooks follow the growth of the town’s school system and transition from the old high school on East Ridge to the new high school on North Salem Road.

 

Ridgefield Probate Records

This yearbook collection ranges from 1945, when thirty-three students graduated, to present day, with a graduating class in the hundreds. The yearbooks follow the growth of the town’s school system and transition from the old high school on East Ridge to the new high school on North Salem Road.

 

Bound archival volumes of the Ridgefield Press

The Ridgefield Press

The Historical Society inherited a large collection of bound volumes from the Ridgefield Press ranging from 1930 to 2003. This collection of newspapers highlights the social, economic, educational and cultural changes that Ridgefielders experienced over seventy years.

 

Portrait of Warren Arthur, architect

Warren Arthur Architectural Archives

The Warren Arthur Architectural Archives honor the architectural heritage of Ridgefield by acquiring architectural drawings and related ephemera of the best representative work of architectural designers as well other works that represent the less-celebrated but important commercial and residential design that make up the character of the town. The Archives are a legacy gift in honor of architect and prolific lighting designer Warren Arthur who designed his own home on Lake Mamanasco and was a long-time member of the Ridgefield Planning and Zoning Commission’s Architectural Advisory Committee.

Women’s Suffrage

Laura Curie Allee Shields was one of twenty women who formed the Equal Franchise League in Ridgefield. Their first meeting was on July 28, 1911 in town hall. The League continued to grow and eventually joined with leagues in surrounding towns to work for the passage of the 19th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. The Historical Society’s Women’s Suffrage collection is based on Ms. Shield’s personal papers, notes, speeches, and photographs. This Collection is not yet catalogued.