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State Register of Historic Places

Overview

State register

The State Register of Historic Places is Connecticut's official listing of structures and sites that characterize the historical development of the state. It includes:

  • the Connecticut Historical Commission’s 1966-1967 survey of historic properties;
  • all National Register nominations approved by the Review Board and all properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places or determined eligible for listing;
  • all properties approved for Local Historic Districts and Local Historic Property designation by the Historic Preservation Council (even if they are not subsequently approved by the local municipality);
  • all of the resources included in the 1987 survey of state-owned buildings completed for the Commission; and
  • all individual nominations of properties and districts approved by the Historic Preservation Council at their regularly scheduled meetings.

Since 1975, over 75,000 properties owned by private citizens, organizations, municipalities and the State of Connecticut have been listed on the State Register. All State Register files are currently held at the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) in Hartford. The SHPO staff is in the process of compiling a database of all State Register properties. Currently, you can search the database for the southern half of the state. You may contact SHPO for information on the northern half of the state.


Eligibility

Eligible properties reflect an integrity of location, design, setting, materials and workmanship. They may also:

  • be associated with events that have made a significant contribution to our history and the lives of persons significant in our past; or
  • embody the distinctive characteristics of a type, period or method of construction; or
  • represent the work of a master, possess high artistic values, or represent a significant and distinguishable entity whose components may lack individual distinction; or
  • have yielded, or may be likely to yield, information important in prehistory or history.

Selection Process

Properties are listed on the State Register by the State Historic Preservation Office’s (SHPO) Historic Preservation Council following review and recommendation by the SHPO staff.

How to Apply

1. Request information.
Call or email to the State Register Coordinator at the SHPO. The staff can provide preliminary information on how to prepare a nomination. Staff may request photos or a brief description via email or even schedule a site visit to determine preliminary eligibility.

2. Prepare the nomination.
Use this form.
See instructions for completing the form.
Get help from locally knowledgeable people or a professionally qualified consultant. Submit the form to SHPO electronically, along with:

Photos
We recommend digital images. Paste them in your processing document, two to a page, with numbers and captions beneath. They should document the property’s appearance, including the main structure, significant landscaping features and any outbuildings. Reference the photos in the building description. Make sure they are legible after they are photocopied.

Maps
Maps should include the nearest major cross streets and be no larger than 8.5 inches x 11 inches. Copies of Tax Assessor’s maps that show parcel boundaries and streets are ideal.

3. Get a staff review from SHPO.
Once SHPO receives your nomination, SHPO staff will notify you if we need additional information. They may schedule a site visit if one hasn’t already been done. In the case of a district, the staff visit helps delineate the approximate boundaries of the area under consideration. SHPO staff evaluates the background information on the proposed property or district within 90 days of receipt of the completed historical and visual documentation.

Staff compiles revisions; several rounds of additional information or edits may be requested. SHPO must receive your final submission for the Historic Preservation Council (HPC) at least three weeks prior to the meeting at which your nomination will be heard.

4. Review your notification.
Once the State Historic Preservation Officer signs the State Register nomination – and at least five business days before the HPC Meeting – we will send you a certified letter, return receipt requested. The letter will inform you that the nomination is on the HPC’s agenda with the date, time and location of the meeting. Please note that we will give priority to nominated properties under imminent threat of demolition or adverse alteration.

If a district is approved for State Register study, the chief executive officer of the municipality is notified by certified mail, return receipt requested, of the approximate area approved for State Register study. A copy of the notification letter is sent to you, the applicant. If a property is approved for State Register study, we notify you by certified mail, return receipt requested; a copy of the letter is sent to the municipality’s chief executive officer.

If a district or property is not approved for State Register study, the State Historic Preservation Officer will notify you.

5. Attend the HPC meeting.
The HPC generally meets the first Wednesday of every month at 9:30 a.m. at the SHPO office, One Constitution Plaza, Second Floor in Hartford. We encourage all interested parties to attend. They may submit information, including letters of support or objection. (Please submit these letters prior to the meeting, but they will also be accepted during the meeting.)

A majority of the HPC must vote to approve the district or property nomination to the State Register.

6. Receive notification of the listing.
If a property is approved, we’ll send you a certified letter, return receipt requested. In the case of a single property, we notify the owner. In the case of a district, we notify the municipality’s Chief Elected Official.

If a property is not approved for study, we’ll send you a letter, return receipt requested.

7. If your nomination is approved, order a plaque.