During the nineteenth century, Wallingford industry expanded with a considerable concentration of small pewter and Britannia ware manufacturers. By mid-century, Robert Wallace acquired the formula for nickel silver and established with Samuel Simpson, R. Wallace & Company the forerunner of Wallace Silversmiths. It was also during this period that many of the small silver and Britannia plants were combined to form the International Silver Company with its headquarters in Meriden, Connecticut and several plants in Wallingford.
In October, 1871, Wallingford's train station was completed for the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad. Noted for its mansard roof, ornamental brackets and stone quoins — the interlocking exterior corners — the station is among the few remaining of its kind that were built during President Grant's administration at the height of railway expansion. The town undertook an overhaul to the roof and exterior with the help of state and federal grants in the early 1990s. The station is served by the Northeast Regional route of Amtrak.
Wallingford was the birthplace of Moses Yale Beach (1800–1868), who would go on to found the Associated Press; singer Morton Downey; conservative talk show host Morton Downey, Jr.; and Georgia governor and signer of the Declaration of Independence Lyman Hall. It was also the childhood home of World War I flying ace Raoul Lufbery. The town produces its own electricity and maintains an electric company with rates well below the state's average.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 39.9 square miles (103.3 km²), of which, 39.0 square miles (101.1 km²) of it is land and 0.9 square miles (2.2 km²) of it (2.16%) is water.
The Town of Wallingford sits astride the Quinnipiac River in northern New Haven County. It is five miles (8 km) south of Meriden and about thirteen miles (19 km) north of New Haven. Situated in the Hartford-New Haven-Springfield corridor, Wallingford is traversed by U.S. Route 5, Interstate 91, State Highways Route 15 (Wilbur Cross Parkway), Route 68, Route 71 and Route 150.
Choate Rosemary Hall
Wallingford has diversified its commercial and industrial base over the past decade attracting high technology industries as compared to traditional heavy manufacturing. It is the home of a large variety of industries and major corporations spanning the spectrum of the medical, health care, service, hi-tech specialty metal manufacturing and research development.
The development of the Barnes Industrial Park, Casimir Pulaski Industrial Park, Wharton Brook Industrial Park, and the South Turnpike Road area have greatly contributed to this transition. The Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, the Town’s largest taxpayer, has established a research and development facility in Wallingford’s MedWay Industrial Park. An Interchange Zone which permits very restrictive commercial development of office parks, research and development centers and hotels has been created at the intersection of Interstate 91 and Route 68..
There were 16,697 households out of which 32.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.3% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.6% were non-families. 25.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.07.
In the town the population was spread out with 24.0% under the age of 18, 6.0% from 18 to 24, 30.7% from 25 to 44, 24.0% from 45 to 64, and 15.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 93.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.7 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $57,308, and the median income for a family was $68,327. Males had a median income of $47,017 versus $34,074 for females. The per capita income for the town was $25,947. About 2.4% of families and 3.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.0% of those under age 18 and 4.4% of those age 65 or over.
Currently, Wallingford is the twenty-third most populous community of Connecticut’s 169 cities and towns, ranks 21st in terms of 2001 Equalized Net Taxable Grand List ($3,723,201,280) and is 97th in the state in terms of estimated 2002 nominal income per capita ($29,788) of its residents.
|Voter Registration and Party Enrollment as of October 25, 2005|
|Party||Active Voters||Inactive Voters||Total Voters||Percentage||Democratic||6,919||278||7,197||25.85%||Republican||4,714||257||4,971||17.85%||Unaffiliated||14,862||770||15,632||56.15%||Minor Parties||39||0||39||0.15%|