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Touring Hartford’s Courts

by Ryan McKeen

Hartfordites listen up, you need to tour some of Hartford’s courts.

I love Hartford Superior Court. When I walk in the lobby, I feel that I’m somewhere.  The Court building is old but it’s ornate. It features an amazing mural on the ceiling, wood work that you don’t see anymore, and a whole lot of marble.

The newer courts are nice but sterile (e.g. Middletown and New Britain). The courts built from 1960 to 1990 or so are horrible buildings (New Haven, Hartford Criminal, New London, Rockville Civil) both to look at and to visit.

Whoever designed it, wanted all who enter to know that they were somewhere important.

If you are ever in the area during court hours, take 5 minutes out of your day and walk in the lobby and look at the ceiling. Then head into one of the main court rooms on the first floor and check out the wood work. They don’t build buildings like Hartford Superior Court anymore.  Of course don’t wander too far from the lobby, you’ll get lost in a series of drab hallways and corridors.

After your done, head over to the CT Supreme Court building which is just down the road (across from the Capitol). Enter the Supreme Court chamber and look at the remarkable mural on the ceiling. One time, I took the tour, and the historian explained to me in great detail the meaning of the mural on the ceiling.Schedule a tour if possible.

Then head towards Bushnell Park. Maybe enjoy lunch from one of the trucks in the park on your way to the Appellate Court on Elm Street next to the Attorney General’s office. The Appellate Court is stunning. Perhaps even more so than the Supreme Court.

If buildings are your thing, consider visiting some of Hartford’s courts.