The James H. Graham Wildlife Refuge is a 2.4 acre piece lying between Rte. 8 South and Northside Drive. The Refuge was one of our earliest parcels, donated by Margaret "Peg" Graham Lizotte. It is named after her father.
Born in 1906, she served as a vice consul for the American Embassy in Mexico City during WWII. After the war, she worked with H. V. Kaltenborn at NBC radio before returning to Torrington. (Kaltenborn, a well known and respected radio correspondent covered Europe during the pre-war years. He was noted for his in-depth knowledge of foreign affairs, but did not fare well as a commentator once television became dominate over radio.)
Once back home, Peg hosted a morning show on WTOR and wrote a daily column for the Torrington Register. She also served as executive secretary for the Planning Commission and was a charter member of the Torrington Historical Society. The widow of Robert C. Lizotte, Peg died in 1995 at age 88.
Access is from Graham Village Drive. The refuge is a wooded lot with Troy Brook dividing it in two. According to Connecticut Names and Places, "Troy Brook" was named in the 19th century "when the Hudson River was closed by ice, teams from Troy, New York, laden with cotton cloth would come through Torrington via Norfolk en-route to Bridgeport, sometimes 20 teams in a string. They always stopped at the Forest House in Center Square."