The Lost Trotting Parks Storyboard Archives

The Lost Trotting Parks Storyboard Archives

Friday, February 25, 2011

Trotting in Boston -- 1856

Charter Oak Park -- Alcryon Defeats Nelson -- 1889

During the age of "When the Horse was King,"
Charter Oak Park in West Hartford, Connecticut,
was a Grand Circuit Trotting Track. In 1889,
Alcryon defeated Nelson. Nelson won the first
heat by ten lengths. Alcryon won the next
three heats. C.H. Nelson blamed the lost on his
horse's lack of conditioning. Others blamed Nelson's
driver. Newspaper accounts indicated that there were
excessive starts. The starter was known to have his favorites.

According to a 1917 map, Charter Oak Park became the fairgrounds
of the Connecticut Fairgrounds Association. The track and
fairgrounds were still visible in aerial photographs
taken in 1934. Today, the land is the home to BJ's, Home Depot,
a Colt Manufacturing Plant, an armory, a Goodrich Tire Plant,
and a playground with soccer fields and tennis courts.
The only reminder of its former use is one street named
Charter Oak Boulevard.

Charter Oak Park Today -- West Hartford, Connecticut

Charter Oak Park in its day was one of the leading tracks
in the United States. All the famous horses and horseman
raced on this track. The track was still visible in 1934.
The track became park of the Connecticut Fairground
Association. Charlie Doe and I visited the track's location
on February 23, 2011. The location is now home to
businesses including BJ's, Home Depot, Colt Manufacturing,
and a Goodrich Tire Plant. On the back side away from
New Park Avenue, you will find an Armory and a recreation
park that contains tennis courts and soccer fields.
The only hint of the location's rich history is a small street
named Charter Oak Boulevard.

Google Earth Image of Charter Oak Boulevard

Charter Oak Park -- West Hartford, Connecticut -- Grand Circuit Track

I appreciate John Lawrence's help finding the
websites with these public domain images.

Spirit of the Times, August 23, 1845 -- Lady Suffolk

To read these storyboards,
 it is recommended that you enlarge them (Ctrl + +)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Raceway Engraving from 1894 Premium Book -- Maine State Fair at Lewiston

This may be an engraving of Lewiston Raceway in the 1894. 
Hopefully, one of our readers may be able to identify the location.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Little Rigby Park Yesterday and Today

Enter 'Little Rigby' into blog's search box for earlier posts.
Images of Little Rigby Park courtesy of Greg Wilkinson

Tuesday, February 1, 2011