Welcome to Frog Hollow

Screenshot 2019-02-21 21.37.02I am excited to share my book, “Frog Hollow: Stories From an American Neighborhood,” which has gone by multiple names in vitro, including “Searching for the American Dream in Frog Hollow,” and “When Will I Finish This Damn Book, D’Ya Think?” (I am fond of the former, but oh-well.)

This book started as a series of notes about things I like about this Hartford neighborhood. The book is a labor of love. It’s also a bit of a love letter to Hartford, my adopted city. If you love Hartford — or think you may want to love Hartford — or if you love the idea of the churn of new immigrants, and fascinating local history, I can come talk about this book. If you’d like to schedule something, email me at slcampbell417@gmail.com. So far, I’m talking about Frog Hollow:


6 p.m. Thursday, March 14 at Barnes & Noble UConn Hartford Bookstore, 18 Front St. Here’s more. (This is another cool Hartford neighborhood that bears examination.)

9:35 a.m. Tuesday, March 26 at Nathan Hale-Ray Middle School, East Haddam Reads!

1 p.m. Friday, March 29, a walking tour of Frog Hollow sponsored by the National Council on Public History. (Sorry. This tour is full.)


12 p.m. Saturday, April 13, Susan B. Anthony Project 15th Annual Authors’ Luncheon, Fairview Farm Golf Course, Harwinton (with Fran Hauser and Jacqueline Smith). You can get tickets here.


7 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, Friends of the Wesleyan Library, Smith Reading Room, Olin Memorial Library, 252 Church St., Middletown.

5:30 p.m. Friday, May 3, Manchester Historical Society annual dinner, Manchester Country Club, 305 S. Main St., Manchester.

11 a.m. Thursday, May 9, Parkville Senior Center, 11 New Park Ave., Hartford, in partnership with Hartford Public Library–Dwight Library and Hartford History Center. I hope to meet people who grew up in Frog Hollow, just so they can tell me all the cool stuff I left out.

Also, that same day at 6 p.m., come hear more at The Lyceum, where you will also learn about the wonderful new library going up in the neighborhood. So if you’re in  Hartford, it’s a two-fer!

5:00 p.m. Saturday, May 17, Caribbean Symposium, University of Connecticut, Hartford Campus, 10 Prospect St., Hartford. Fiona Vernal , University of Connecticut associate professor of history, is kind enough to include me in this event, and I intend to learn a lot.

7 p.m., Wednesday, May 22, Tolland Library, 21 Tolland Green. The last time I went there, I had a ball. Thank you, Kate Farrish, for setting this up.

7 p.m. Thursday, May 30, part of the Mark My Words series at Mark Twain House in Hartford. You can get tickets here. This is the official book launch.


4 p.m. Sunday, June 9, Ivoryton Library106 Main St., Ivoryton. This is my hometown library. Space is limited, but there’s a lot of Ivoryton factory history that mirrors Hartford’s. Come heckle!

Noon, Wednesday, June 19, Old State House, 800 Main St., in Hartford. I get the chills walking into this building, every single time.


6:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 23, Noah Webster House and West Hartford Historical Society, 227 South Main St., West Hartford. Noah Webster’s in the book — which I’m sure, if we dug him up and told him, would absolutely thrill him.


1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 20, Armsmear, 80 Wethersfield Ave., Hartford. I love this historic place and look forward to being inside.


11:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 20, Books On Pratt, Hartford. I’ll be among 50 local authors anxious to talk about our work.


7 p.m. Thursday, Oct 3, First Church, 12 South Main St., West Hartford. I love this place, too. The people who come here ask good questions.

1 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30, Charter Oak Cultural Center, Hartford. What a beautiful building is this.


10:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, Warehouse Point Library, 107 Main St., East Windsor. I love libraries. I love talking at libraries. This is a library talk.

11:15 a.m., Friday, Nov. 8, University of Hartford, West Hartford. This is a breakout session for the Association of Connecticut Library Boards.

1:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 18, Middlesex Institute for Lifelong Education, Middlesex Community College, Middletown. (You can see the entire calendar here.)


4-6 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 12., The Old State House, in Hartford. This is a celebration of this historic building’s reopening of their gift shop. Come meet all your friends!


6:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 28, Enfield Public Library, 104 Middle Road in Enfield. Start the new year off with a talk about Frog Hollow.

Published by datingjesus

Just another one of God's children.

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  1. Hi there – just finished reading Frog Hollow. I was born & raised there from 1955 until we moved to Hartford’s West End, near Elizabeth Park, in 1972. Really enjoyed this book, especially the history.
    I did find a typo though on pg. 164., 2nd para… “When she was in high school, her parents split up and she moved with her mother to Frog Hollow, to an apartment on the corner of PUTNAM and RUSK, across from Burns school.” That’s RUSS ST., not “Rusk”. I know this because 159 Russ St. (between Babcock & Lawrence Sts.), almost on the corner of Russ & Lawrence, was the last place we lived before moving out of Frog Hollow. That yellow 2 family house is still there.
    I was brought home from St. Francis hospital to my parent’s apt. on Putnam St. across from Pope Park, then we moved to Morton St., a “perfect six” railroad apt. Went to kindergarten @ DF Burns school then Immaculate Conception School on Broad & Wards Sts. from 1st to 8th grade. Had the same 2nd grade nun as my dad, uncle & aunts, Sr. Ita of the Sisters of Mercy. We were baptized, received communion & confirmed at Immaculate Conception Church on Park St.
    Across from our yellow house on Russ St. was our Lady of Fatima Church. We didn’t attend Mass there bc back in those days (1950’s through 1970’s) Hartford was divided up by Parish. Our Lady of Fatima was for the Portuguese who lived on Babcock & surrounding Sts. Italians went to St. Patrick/St. Anthony and St. Augustine’s (South End), Irish went to St. Lawrence O’Toole’s, French Canadians went to St. Anne’s, etc etc. I could name the all. Walked to & from midnight mass by myself in elementary school bc I was in the choir.
    It was a GREAT city to grow up in!! We walked everywhere or took the city bus with a quarter & a transfer. We had The Mitchell House on Lawrence St. to hang out, Parish bazaars, CYO dances, basketball games, cheerleading competitions, sidewalk roller skating, ice skating @ Colt Pk. Lower income families lived in “the projects” like Rice Heights.
    With all the knowledge I have of Hartford, I never knew why Pope Park or Babcock St. was named. Thoroughly enjoyed your book. Thank you for recognizing such a special place. But you should get “Rusk” changed to Russ. LOL


    1. Thank you for this wonderful history of the place. Did you know there’s talk of reopening the Mitchell House? Wouldn’t that be a great neighborhood resource (again)? I don’t think I’ve ever known of a neighborhood that draws such affection and loyalty, and I include my own neighborhood in that.

      Also, thanks for the editing. It makes me so mad at myself when something stupid like this gets through. We’ll fix it on the next edition, and thank you again.


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