Documenting Connecticut During COVID-19

Sign Promoting Social Distancing at Big Y Grocery Store, Bishops Corner, West Hartford. Photographed by Ilene Frank, March 28, 2020

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To see a sample of the images that have been submitted, click here.

As the state’s official historical society and one of the oldest in the nation, the Connecticut Historical Society has been collecting and archiving items that document our state’s past since 1825. Our collection includes more than 4 million manuscripts, graphics, books, artifacts, and other historical materials.

That brings us to now. We are currently living through history! We need your help to document what is going on in your homes, at your jobs, and in communities across Connecticut. We want to hear your story. We want to know how you and your family are experiencing the current pandemic and “new normal.”


Below are examples of what we’re looking for:
Writings
Signage
Photos
Drawings, paintings, and other forms of art you’re creating and documenting
Short videos (limited to 500MB file size, for larger files please email Molly_Woods@chs.org)

Please stay safe when documenting these historic times. Do not put yourself in danger when capturing photographs or videos.

How Can I Help?

We have set up a special online resource that will allow you to share your stories, photos and other items so future generations can understand what this experience was like in Connecticut.

Why is this Important?

Items in our collection let us hear the voices and see the people from our past who are living all the ranges of human experience and emotion. Through the items we collect, we can understand their joys and disappointments, as well as their achievements and failings. And yes, we can even understand the seemingly dull tasks of everyday life – what the weather was like, the neighborhood gossip, or what someone ate for dinner.

Please take the time to read and respond to each of the fields in the below form before uploading your item(s) for consideration. Please note, items can not be considered unless the form is completely filled out with the needed information.

Future researchers, visitors, and Connecticut residents will have you to thank for sharing a part of your lives with them as they work to understand this time in history!

(*required field)

COVID-19 Resource Submission

  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • Drop files here or
    Accepted file types: doc, pdf, jpg, tif, mp4.

Corning Fountain

A City of Hartford Department of Public Works employee places a mask on one of the Corning Fountain statues. Effective April 20, 2020, Governor Ned Lamont ordered that all Connecticut residents must wear masks while in public settings when safe social distancing cannot be maintained. (Photo Credit: Hartford News)

Neighborhood Birthday Parade

Pierce turned four years old in April, during the "Stay Home, Stay Safe" period of the coronavirus pandemic in Connecticut, so he could not have a birthday party. His parents organized a Neighborhood Birthday Parade. Their family marched up and down their street in Cromwell waving pompoms and playing musical instruments. Neighbors cheered, sang, and hung banners from their porches and driveways. (Photo Credit: Alissa DeJonge)

Field Hospital

Mobile field hospital set up by members of the Governor's Guard at Danbury Hospital. April 2, 2020 (Photo Credit: Connecticut National Guard Public Affairs Office)

Playscape Sign

Sign at Elizabeth Park in Hartford informing visitors that the playscape is closed due to COVID-19. April 14, 2020 (Photo Credit: Rob Kret)

Self-Isolation Instructions

Instructions on how to self-isolate for possible or confirmed COVID-19, given out at the drive-through testing center at William H. Backus Hospital in Norwich. March 24, 2020 (Photo Credit: Jesse Nasta)

COVID-19 Testing Instructions

COVID-19 test instructions handed out at the drive-through testing center at William H. Backus Hospital in Norwich. March 24, 2020 (Photo Credit: Jesse Nasta)

Gillette Castle State Park

Sign at Gillette Castle State Park in East Haddam reminding park visitors to maintain social distance of at least six feet. March 24, 2020 (Photo Credit: Jesse Nasta)

Mask Selfie

Mitzi Young wearing a homemade mask made by her friend, Paul Pham. (Photo Credit: Mitzi Young)

Self-Portrait

Self-portrait of Matthew Best, an artist and figure drawing teacher at the Hartford Art School. As schools closed, classes shifted online. Rather than using the same live figure models, students are using themselves and the people they are quarantined with as models. Each week they are doing two self-portraits they are calling #quarantineportrait. In his self-portrait, Best is wearing a brightly colored face mask made by his husband, Paul Pham. April 2, 2020 (Photo Credit: Matthew Best)

Bicycle Recycling

Seth Max, a BiCi Co. volunteer, is standing next to unusable bicycle parts. Seth Max and Tony Cherolis stripped useful parts off of bicycles that were not repairable and put them out at the curb for scrap metal pickup. Scrap metal pickup and recycling is a way that some Hartford households can gain additional income. March 31, 2020 (Photo Credit: Anthony Cherolis)

143rd Regional Support Group

Members of the 143rd Regional Support Group unload strykers to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Farmington. April 9, 2020 (Photo Credit: Connecticut National Guard Public Affairs Office)

Hartford Skyline

Hartford skyline showing the Downtown Marriott's heart of windows, a heart sign at the Connecticut Science Center, and Riverfront Recapture's performance pavilion lit in red to thank healthcare workers. (Photo Credit: Hartford News)

Virtual Sewing Lesson

Laura Kasowitz, owner of Hartford Stitch in West Hartford, hosts a video call to help a mask maker troubleshoot her machine. As a non-essential
business she had to close her physical studio location, so she turned her Sewing Machine 101 class into a virtual workshop. April 21, 2020 (Photo Credit: Laura Kasowitz)

Meeting the Granddaughter

Lenny Isaac being introduced for the first time to his granddaughter through her parents' picture window in West Hartford on the day the new family came home from the hospital. March 27, 2020 (Photo Credit: Lenny Isaac)

John J. Kelley Statue

Statue of John J. Kelley, the 1957 Boston Marathon winner, located in Mystic. Statue is wearing a green shamrock mask. April 6, 2020 (Photo Credit: Amby Burfoot)

Painted Rock

This painted rock is located at the corner of Case Road and Punch Brook Road in Burlington. It was painted by Kevin Kryzwick to show support for healthcare workers. April 12, 2020 (Photo Credit: Molly Woods)

Empty Meat Case

Empty meat case at Stop and Shop, Norwich, March 14, 2020 (Photo Credit: Regan Miner)

Empty Toliet Paper Aisle

Empty toilet paper aisle at Stop and Shop, Norwich, March 14, 2020 (Photo Credit: Regan Miner)

Thank You Essential Workers

Brittney Marie holding a handmade sign thanking essential workers (Photo Credit: Brittney Marie)

All You Need is Love

Chalk note, "All You Need is Love," drawn by Erin Sheehan and her son, West End, Hartford, March 22, 2020 (Photo Credit: Erin Sheehan)

Little Free Library

Little Free Library with a roll of toilet paper on Oxford Street, Hartford, April 6, 2020 (Photo Credit: Daniel Kelman)

Hilton Hotel Heart

Hilton Hotel in downtown Hartford, taken from Church Street. Empty rooms are lit up in a red heart to honor the front-line workers combating the coronavirus. April 2, 2020 (Photo Credit: Bryan Cassidy)

Lawn Signs

Lawn signs in Haddam thanking first responders, April 2, 2020 (Photo Credit: Sabine Nyenhuis)

Closed Sign

Sign on Morneault's Stackpole Moore Tryon clothing shop at Main and Trumbull Streets, Hartford, March 24, 2020 (Photo Credit: Kerri Provost)

Graffiti on bus shelter

Graffiti on bus shelter in front of the Gold Building on Main Street, Hartford, March 24, 2020 (Photo Credit: Kerri Provost)

To support the effort to contain the spread of COVID-19, the Connecticut Historical Society is closed to the public through July 31. All on-site programs and events are canceled during this time. Our Annual Meeting has been postponed until September 14. Click here for CHS's digital programs.