SEARCH: History of New Canaan Street Names


Cheese Spring Road

Today is the upper end of Mariomi Road, passing the eastern end of Benedict Hill Road and continuing into Wilton. Just what its original layout was is something of a mystery, but the highway terminated somewhere on Valley Road. Perhaps the earliest reference to it is in a 1739 deed that transferred ownership of twenty-eight acres of land on "the north end of Cheese Spring Road in ye Huckleberry Hills" bounded on the east by "a highway." Cheese Spring Ridge seems to be a name that originated in Wilton in the 1700's, and Cheese Spring Book, which arises in a Wilton spring, was named long before the road. The story that the brook was named for cheese cooled in its waters is plain fancy. The road certainly was called Cheese Spring Road in 1897 when Mrs. Susan Anderson took a lawsuit to the Connecticut Superior Court of Errors to force the selectmen to reopen the lower road section, by then impassable, to Valley Road so she could drive to New Canaan to shop rather than going up the road to Wilton. Mrs. Anderson lived a little south of the present intersection of Benedict Hill Road, and the Town, after losing the lawsuit, was forced to reopen one and eight tenths miles of Cheese Spring Road, although it seems probably now that the Town officials did not follow the old highway precisely. (See also Benedict Hill Road and Mariomi Road.) (Source: New Canaan Historical Society)

*** has partnered with the New Canaan Historical Society on a digital Street Names Database that lets readers look up the origins of local street names online.

With information drawn from a 1960 annual of the member-supported Historical Society, the searchable database is a drop-down menu that captures information on how New Canaan street names got their names, in a snapshot from that year.

The Historical Society has taken the further step of building out a completely updated list—should residents seek information that’s missing from the database (such as more modern street names) or want to review in greater detail what’s included in it—and that’s all available in the organization’s research library at 13 Oenoke Ridge Road (top of God’s Acre).

We’ve created a new category, all the way on the right on the main navigation bar on the homepage called “Bookmarks” where we’ve filed this Street Name Database, so you can find it easily next time you’re looking:

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This is a fluid database: If you have any memories, photos or information to share about street name history in New Canaan, please feel free to post a comment on this article or email and we’ll incorporate it into the appropriate entry.