The White Hills section of Shelton, Connecticut was settled in the late 1600’s by English settlers who bought lands from the Pootatuck Indians. There are a number of theories as to why it was called White Hills; one being that the hills were snowier than the lowlands, another being that the myriad of white blossoms on the chestnut forests (some say apple orchards) washed the hills with white. By the 1880’s twenty Hubbell families lived in White Hills engaged in farming, distilling, constructions and various other businesses. As with many rural communities, times changed, the farms were sold off, the trees and developers colonized the once cleared land. Despite this, White Hills is still the most rural part of Shelton with a number of operating farms.
The Captain Christopher Hubbell Homestead in White Hills reflects the once rural nature of the 1800s with a nine room colonial farmhouse, five barns, two carriage houses and a three-seat outhouse . The house is known to the old-timer’s as the Warren Hubbell house, though it was built by his grandfather, Capt. Christopher, in 1803. Warren lived in the house his entire life as had his father, Charles, before him. The family ran a cider and distillery business which operated, even underground through Prohibition, until three years before Warren’s death.
Warren’s son Sterling’s built a house and started a dairy farm on the family land below the house. The dairy farm was named Wigwam Farm after the Indians that once camped there on their way to fishing and clamming grounds on Long Island Sound. There is a stone in the upper meadow of the current property that has a wide V-shaped clef which, according to legend, served as a cradle for a new born Indian baby when there was an Indian camp at that location.
Warren’s wife, Annie lived in the house with their daughter Elsie until the early 1950’s. The house was rented for a number years before being sold in 1971 by Sterling. None of Sterling’s children took up farming and he eventually gave up the dairy operation and sold the farm. Today all traces of Wigwam Farm are gone. After being sold and suffering years of neglect and vandalism, the barns and house burned to the ground. Thus ended a long line of Hubbell farmers in White Hills beginning with the first Richard Hubbell in 1707. Many of the Hubbell’s, including Capt. Christopher, are buried in the Lower White Hills Cemetery further down on Maple Avenue.
For a detailed description of the Homestead: CHubbell Homestead
Our thanks to the Shelton Historical Society and especially to Phyllis Dimock Tucker, the granddaughter of Sterling Hubbell who shared her time, memories and photographs.