We have had long ties to this area. There is an old postcard of downtown Torrington, looking north from Center Bridge. The card is a visual history of downtown. Most of the buildings shown are long gone. A watering trough rests in the intersection. The Torrington/Winsted trolley is rolling past the Granite Block. The roads are not paved. A peddler's buggy with its' huge umbrella, part shade and part billboard, is trotting north, a sign on the backboard says, simply, "MEAT." There is another, less fashionable cart, beginning its turn up Water Street. This cart was driven by a town employee. His job was to pick up all the odorous remains left on the ground from all the horse traffic downtown. Someone had to do it.
How do we know this? Irving Mills, one of the founders of the Land Trust, used to ride on this cart when he was a schoolboy. Who knows what passed for fun back then?
Irving Frederick Mills was born here in 1908 and worked for the Hotchkiss Brothers Woodworking Company and Anaconda American Brass. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and snowshoeing. In addition to HLPT, Irving also belonged to the Litchfield Hills Audubon Society, the Torrington Historical Society, the Appalacian Mountain Club and served on the town Conservation Commission for many years. He passed in 2004 at 96 years of age. The "Irving Mills Trail" was named in his honor for many years of service.
The Pleasantview development is off Torringford Street opposite Hayden Hill Road. This land is actually part of the old Hayden Farm complex. Access to the trailhead is on the right hand side of 300 Hillandale and a few hundred feet east of the road. The trail is extensive, with many side paths diverging through a mature forest. The trail ends near the cul-de-sac of Hillandale. Our property continues around the cul-de-sac and wraps around the homes on Penny Lane. This piece is about 68 acres, there is also an unconnected, 17 acre piece on Hillandale, nearly opposite Penny Lane.