This Week in CT: The Wadsworth Athenium became the first public U.S. art museum 179 years ago

This Week in Connecticut

(WTNH) — Our flashback takes us back 179 years ago — the Wadsworth Athenium became the first public art museum in the United States. That happened on June 1, 1842.

Governor Chauncey Cleveland signed the act that formally incorporated it as such. But it didn’t open until two years later after construction was finished on the iconic, castle-like building that you can still see today in Hartford.

It’s named for Daniel Wadsworth — a Hartford man who was its benefactor and namesake.

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