Our Roots Run Deep

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Beyond its historical significance, the town seal serves as a unifying symbol for the community. The seal fosters a sense of pride and belonging among residents and reminds us of the town’s diverse heritage. The town seal was adopted at a town meeting on March 25, 1969. The various images on the seal each have historical significance for the town.

At the bottom of the seal is the town’s name “Suffield Connecticut”. Connecticut is part of historic New England. Few people recognize that Suffield was part of Massachusetts when it was founded. Not until the great boundary dispute between Massachusetts and Connecticut was settled was Suffield officially part of Connecticut.

“Founded in 1670” according to town records 1670 was the year Suffield was founded by John Pynchon, an entrepreneur from Springfield. Pynchon had helped make the family fortune by trading with friendly Native people up and down the Connecticut river. The 17th century was the early colonial period in the United States.

Two people are featured prominently in the seal: a European settler and a Native American. Suffield’s town seal is thought to be unique among Connecticut’s 169 towns and cities with the depiction of both a European settler and a Native person who was an earlier settler. The people of Suffield recognized Native people’s contributions to Suffield’s very early history. The seal symbolized the early friendship between Settlers and Native people.

The first “meeting house” was built soon after the establishment of the town and was used for government, education, and religious functions. The meeting house reflects Suffield’s historical significance as a colonial settlement and was used as a place for community gatherings and discussions, religious activities, and childhood education.

In the center, the seal incorporates an image that reflects Suffield’s natural surroundings and scenic beauty. The scene depicts a bright sunny day with open fields and farmland, a brook, and rolling hills in the distance. The town’s picturesque landscape and abundant natural resources are captured with this scene. This element not only reminds us of Suffield’s natural heritage but also highlights the importance of environmental stewardship and preservation.

Two tobacco leaves underscore Suffield’s agricultural roots and its history as a farming community. Agriculture played a prominent role in Suffield’s development, shaping its economy and way of life. Corn and especially tobacco were the main crops. Tobacco growth led to the first cigar factory in the United States being located in Suffield. Tobacco growing flourishes even today.

In conclusion, the imagery on the town seal holds deep meaning and significance, reflecting the town’s heritage and values. It represents the early friendship between two different cultures: Native peoples and European settlers, it celebrates the town’s agriculture, farming, and natural beauty, and it highlights the early importance of civic responsibility. The seal honors the past, inspires the present, and guides the path to the future.

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