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Connecticut lies in the New England region. As of the 2010 census, it has the highest per-capita income, second-highest level of human development behind Massachusetts, and highest median household income in the United States. It is bordered by Rhode Island to the east, Massachusetts to the north, New York to the west, and Long Island Sound to the south. Its capital city is Hartford, and Bridgeport is its most populous. Historically the state is part of New England as well as the tri-state area with New York and New Jersey, which together make up metropolitan New York City. The state is named for the Connecticut River which approximately bisects the state. The word “Connecticut” is derived from various anglicized spellings of “Quononoquett” (Conanicut), a Mohegan-Pequot word for “long tidal river”.
The first European settlers to Connecticut were Dutchmen, who established a small settlement called Fort Hoop at Hartford’s confluence of Connecticut and Park Rivers. Half of Connecticut was initially claimed by the Dutch colony New Netherland, which included much of the land between the Connecticut and Delaware Rivers, although the first major settlements were established in the 1630s by the English. Thomas Hooker led a band of followers from the Massachusetts Bay Colony and founded the Connecticut Colony; other settlers from Massachusetts founded the Saybrook Colony and the New Haven Colony. The New Haven and Connecticut colonies created documents of Fundamental Orders. These documents are considered to be the first constitutions in America. The three colonies were merged in 1662 under a royal charter. Connecticut became a crown colony. Connecticut was one of the Thirteen Colonies which rejected British rule in the American Revolution.
Connecticut is the third-smallest state in area, the 29th largest and fourth most populous of all fifty states. It is also known as the “Constitution State”, “Nutmeg State”, “Provisions State”, “Land of Steady Habits”, and “Constitution State”. It played a significant role in the establishment of the United States federal government (see Connecticut Compromise). Connecticut’s strong maritime tradition is rooted in the Connecticut River, Thames River and Long Island Sound ports. The state also has a long history of hosting the financial services industry, including insurance companies in Hartford County and hedge funds in Fairfield County.