Books About Ridgefield

(Current print titles available from Books on the Common, Ridgefield Historical Society, Keeler Tavern Museum and History Center. Reprints from Amazon,, etc. Some are also available digitally.)

Ambling Along Old Main Street
A walk around the village of Ridgefield a century ago, featuring more than 100 antique, full-color images of what Main Street and its side neighborhoods looked like. 114 pages, indexed, Red Petticoat Press, 2024.

Bob’s Ridgefield
A look at the last half of the 20th Century in Ridgefield through the pen of cartoonist Bob Gustafson. More than 500 cartoons about life in town from the 1950s to 2000. Red Petticoat Press, 2023.

A Country Life in Old Ridgebury
An extensively annotated and illustrated diary of Gilbert Burr, a young Ridgefield farmer, for the year 1888. Red Petticoat Press, 2023.

Farmers Against the Crown
Keith Marshall Jones wrote this comprehensive account of the Battle of Ridgefield during the Revolutionary War, revealing much new information and correcting many old mistakes in previous accounts. “This telling will remain the standard account of the battle for a long, long time,” said Christopher Collier, former Connecticut state historian.162 pages, paperback, extensively illustrated. Published 2002.

The Farms of Farmingville
While Keith Marshall Jones calls this book “a two-century history of 23 Ridgefield, Connecticut farmhouses and the people who gave them life,” it is really a history of a good part of the town. He has extensively researched a section on Ridgefield that contains a significant cross-section of the community from the 1700s into the 20th Century, and gives a picture of what life here was like during that period. Published 2001. Hardcover. 509 pages, indexed. Many maps, house plans, photos.

Fascinating But Forgotten
Profiles of more than 100 Ridgefielders of the past who accomplished notable — sometimes amazing — things, but whose life in town has been mostly or completely forgotten or overlooked. By Jack Sanders, 337 pages, illustrated, indexed, 2023.

Five Village Walks
Self-guided tours of Ridgefield village history, with more than 50 pictures from the past, by Jack Sanders. 56 pages, indexed, map. Last updated in 2008. $5 price benefits Ridgefield Historical Society.

Here Lyes Ye Body
A guide to the town’s many cemeteries, including interesting people buried in them, styles of gravestones, histories of graveyards and traditions. By Jack Sanders, 105 pages, illustrated, indexed, Red Petticoat Press, 2022.

Hidden History of Ridgefield
A look at Ridgefield’s often unheralded people, places and things, a sort of sequel to Ridgefield Chronicles, relating little-known pieces of what make Ridgefield a remarkable place in which to live, work, visit—or write history. by Jack Sanders, 160 pages, illustrated, indexed, The History Press, 2015.

History of Ridgefield
George L. Rockwell's 583-page classic has been long out of print, but copies become available. Particularly strong on 19th and early 20th Century history, and containing many early birth, marriage and death records. The book has many photos taken by Joseph Hartmann. Cloth and leather editions were printed. Also available in reprints and, free of charge, digitally.

Images of America: Ridgefield
127 pages of finely reproduced pictures of Ridgefield past, published in 1999. People, houses, businesses, scenes of town life, etc. from 1890s to 1950s, produced by Ridgefield Archives Committee, now the Ridgefield Historical Society. Arcadia Publishing.

Impact: The Historical Account of the Italian Immigrants of Ridgefield, CT
Extensive history of the Italian community of Ridgefield, with many biographies, photos, and interviews; by Aldo Biagiotti; 345 pages, indexed, privately printed, 1990.

The Last Word
Although a work of fiction, this “cozy” murder mystery is set in 21st Century Ridgefield and accurately depicts many aspects of life in the community. By Gerri Lewis, 304 pages, Crooked Lane Books, 2024.

Notable Ridgefielders
An 88-page, tabloid-newspaper-sized collection of brief biographies of more than 400 people who made news in Ridgefield during the 20th Century, published by The Ridgefield Press on its 125th anniversary. Also contains an extensive timeline. Illustrated, indexed. Published in 2000. Available only at the Ridgefield Historical Society.

Proprietors of Ridgefield, The
Glenna M. Welsh’s history tells of the early settlement of the town, with particular focus on those who lived on Main Street. Not indexed. Many illustrations. Published in 1976 in paper and cloth editions.

Remember the Ladies: Notable Women of Ridgefield
Profiles of 14 noteworthy women in Ridgefield’s history; also covers organizations they founded or led; 100 pages, illustrated, Ridgefield Historical Society, 2008.

Ridgefield 1900-1950
More than 215 views of what Ridgefield looked like during the first half of the 20th Century. Postcard images of homes, estates, inns, street scenes, stores, churches, and more. Over 20,000 words of accompanying history and lore about the locales pictured. By Jack Sanders, 126 pages, indexed, Arcadia Publishing, 2003.

Ridgefield at 300
Lavishly illustrated, coffee-table book about the town’s celebration of its 300th birthday in 2008, produced by the old Ridgefield Magazine.

Ridgefield Celebrities
Tales of the lives of 60 nationally and internationally known Ridgefielders of the past, indexed, Red Petticoat Press, 2023

Ridgefield Chronicles
Offers glimpses into aspects of Ridgefield’s history including interesting people, the things they accomplished, and the way they lived, as well as the town’s varied geography and place names. By Jack Sanders. illustrated, 160 pages, indexed, The History Press, 2014.

Ridgefield’s Great Estates
Profiles of 20, late 19th and early 20th Century estates and the fascinating people who’ve lived in them. 154 illustrated — many in color, indexed, Red Petticoat Press, 2023.

Ridgefield in Review
Published in 1958, the most modern complete history of the town, with many illustrations, old maps, and military records; written by Smithsonian Institution historian Silvio A. Bedini. 396 pages, indexed. Used and reprinted copies available; free digital editions also available.

Ridgefield Names
The history of Ridgefield through stories about more than 1,200 place names, including roads, hills, mountains, streams, lakes, ponds, parks, refuges, and more. by Jack Sanders, 629 pages, Red Petticoat Pres, 2021.

Ridgefield Natural Resources Inventory
A 102-page book on almost every aspect of natural Ridgefield, from geology and water, to flora and fauna; analyzes forest types and land use; published in 2012 by the Conservation Commission. Includes many full-color maps, and lists of native wild plants, birds, reptiles, trees, soils, significant vernal pools, and more. Available in town hall.

Ridgefield Walk Book
An extensively illustrated book guide to the many recreational open spaces in Ridgefield, complete with colorful trail maps. Published by the Ridgefield Conservation Commission, 77 pages, available in town hall, 2016.

School Days
A history of Ridgefield’s schoolhouses and schooling from the 1700s till the last schoolhouse closed in 1939, with many old photos and maps. By Jack Sanders, 378 pages, indexed, Red Petticoat Press, 2023.

So Nobly They Served
A compilation of profiles of more than 60 people from Ridgefield who served their country in outstanding, often heroic ways, from the French and Indian War, the Revolution and Civil War, through World Wars I and II, and Vietnam. By Jack Sanders, 154 pages, illustrated, indexed, 2023.

Uncle Ned’s Mountain
A history of Ridgefield’s African-American population from 1708 to the turn of the 20th Century, including coverage of slavery (with information on 60 enslaved men, women and children from the 18th Century, including two runaways); an Underground Railroad stop operated by an African-American couple; early free Black settlers; Black servicemen in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, and more. By Jack Sanders, 222 pages, illustrated, indexed, 2022.

Wicked Ridgefield
A historical assortment of bad guys and bad times including thievery, bigotry, murders, missing persons, arson, book-banning, and other assorted man-made misery. “This look at the darker side of Ridgefield history points out some heroes, offers some lessons, and provides even a little humor,” says author Jack Sanders in the introduction. 160 pages, illustrated, indexed. The History Press, 2016