Asylum Hill, Hartford, Connecticut is named after the Asylum for the Education and Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons, which was located here until around 1920, when it was moved to West Hartford and (thankfully) renamed the American School for the Deaf. In the late 19th century, the neighborhood—a 15-minute walk west of downtown—was considered one of Hartford’s best. Mark Twain, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and several politicians lived here. Nowadays, it’s home to a diverse mix of singles and couples, many of them first-time home buyers, as well as empty-nesters looking for an urban lifestyle. Local employers include Fortune 500 companies Aetna and the Hartford Insurance Group, as well as St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center.
The neighborhood features an array of Queen Annes, Shingle-style homes, Colonial Revivals, and Italianates; its Sigourney Square District contains over 200 homes on the National Register.
Homes here cost anywhere from $80,000 for a fixer-upper to $300,000 for a fully restored Queen Anne. More often than not they’ve been renovated, but project seekers can still strike gold.
NINA Hartford, the Northside Institutions Neighborhood Alliance, offers fully rehabbed historic properties as well as—no surprise—old homes that need resourceful people to save them from destruction to prospective home buyers at reasonable prices.
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