Presidential visits to Granby

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In May 1932, President Calvin Coolidge caught a few fish here during a visit with his good friend, Senator George McLean.

President Calvin Coolidge came to Granby in May of 1932 to go fishing with his good friend, Senator George McLean of Simsbury. Senator McLean owned a lot of land and cared about the environment. He designated some his land that he owned in Granby, Simsbury, and Canton toward a refuge for animals. We know this area as the McLean Game Refuge. The former President did catch a fish wearing a three-piece suit and boots to go fishing. Apparently, Senator McLean had the pond stocked with fish before the President’s fishing trip to ensure the President would have a good shot at catching a fish. Gee, little old Granby, with approximate population of 1,400 people in 1932 and today a population of 12,000 people, had a Presidential visit. 

The Simsbury senator not only hosted President Coolidge to fish at the refuge, but also Presidents Taft and Hoover. Of the thousands of towns in the United States, Granby residents could boast in 1932 that three of the 33 presidents at that time had visited their town, a remarkable distinction.

Do you want to learn more about the history of Granby? Come join the Salmon Brook Historical Society as it celebrates its 75th year as non-profit organization this year. To become a member, call 860-653-9713 or go to The society is always looking for members and volunteers to help with flea markets, the car show, the tractor and engine show and other events. Granby, which started out as a small farming community has a neat history- so come become a member and help celebrate the society’s 75th anniversary.