On Thursday, Feb. 8, the North Haven Garden Club had a meeting featuring speaker Julie Hulten with facts about The Sleeping Giant. Julie spoke about the resort era on The Giant. Her talk and power point display was very interesting and informative. On of the stories Julies told was about Hobbomock- the story goes a like this but Julies storytelling was much better. "The Native Americans in the area called the Giant Hobbomock, an evil spirit who became angry at the neglect of his people and stamped his foot near the current location of Middletown causing the Connecticut River to change course. All the animals went away cause there was no longer the great river flowing by them. Keitan, a good spirit cast a spell on Hobomock causing him to sleep forever so that he would do no further damage." And so thats legend of the Sleeping Giant.
The following information is from the SGPA on the Giant. "The second half of the nineteenth century saw cottages built on many of the Giant's ridges. The summer homes were used by many local notables for either overnight stays or summer-long residency. The highlight of this era was John H. Dickerman's opening of Blue Hills Park on July 4, 1888 when local residents were invited to travel a carriage road that had been constructed to a pavilion on the fourth ridge for a "basket picnic" which included ice cream. Judge Willis Cook who owned the first ridge or the Giant's head had an ox road built to the top of the head so he could transport building materials for a cottage. Parts of this road are now the blue trail on the north side of the head. By 1911 however vandals had become such a problem that Judge Cook decided to accept an offer from the Mount Carmel Traprock Company to lease the land for quarrying. The lease was for 20 years with a renewal option for another 20 years. Perhaps to ease the objections of his neighbors, Judge Cook included a clause in the lease that no quarrying should be visible from Mount Carmel Avenue. The objections of local residents to the continuous blasting and ultimately to the changing of the Giant's shape led to the formation of the Sleeping Giant Park Association and the beginning of Sleeping Giant State Park." At one time locals wanted the park to start at Lake Whitney all the way to the Sleeping Giant. Wow could you imagine what a great park that would have been.
Hostesses for the evening were Mary Cameron, Italia Avitable and Maryanne Angelopoulos, flower arrangement was by Gerri Giordano.
The North Haven Garden Club is a member of the Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut, The New England Garden Club and The National Garden Clubs, Inc.
1- Julie Hulten during her power point
2-3- photos of the old days at the giant
5- Flower arrangement by Gerri Giordano