Macedonia Brook State Park


The 2,300-acre Macedonia Brook State Park, originated with a 1,552-acre gift from the White Memorial Foundation of Litchfield in 1918. The park's exciting terrain has resulted from the slow wearing down of its hard rock formation base. The Blue Trail crosses Cobble Mountain and several other peaks, offering outstanding views of the Catskills and Taconics. Numerous springs and streams add to the pleasure of hiking.

The land was once the domain of the Scatacook Indians, who derived their name from the nearby confluence of the Housatonic and Ten Mile Rivers. After Kent was settled in 1738, the Indians and settlers shared this area in comparative harmony. During the Revolutionary War, one hundred Scatacook volunteers operated a signal system along the peaks up the river valley. As the original Kent owners moved away or died, many of the woodland parcels west of the Housatonic were sold or left to a commercial and farming settlement called Macedonia.

Commercial activity in Macedonia included cider, grist, and saw mills in addition to a substantial iron producing industry. The local company store was a thriving business and bustling gathering place where teams constantly arrived and departed. The iron industry played an important role in early Connecticut history. Operating both in Kent and the village of Macedonia, the Kent Iron Company's iron furnace, two forges and a puddling works converted cast iron to malleable iron. Most of it was modified into a variety of implements, such as crowbars, wagon wheel rims, and agricultural instruments. Remains of the second forge, a stamping works, are still visible at the southern end of the park. Because these processes required vast amounts of charcoal, by 1848 all original timber had been used. Only at this time was a committee formed to prevent the waste of wood. Eventually, competition from larger Pennsylvania mines forced the Macedonia furnace to close in 1865. Many years later, the National Park Service established a Conservation Corps Camp at the park and much site improvement work was accomplished.