The Champion Story

General George Washington and The Champion Family of Colchester


Colonel Henry Champion born in East Haddam in 1723 was the grandson of Henry Champion; an original settler of Saybrook.   In 1775, Colonel Champion was selected to be a Commissary for the war effort, his duties were to procure goods and supply the Continental Army with provisions.  Colonel Champion worked closely with the top colonial leaders, including General George Washington and Connecticut Governor Jonathan Trumbull.

During the winter of 1777-1778, Champion was summoned by General George Washington to command a wagon train needed to feed starving troops at Valley Forge.  A herd of beef cattle, purchased at great expense, was driven over 300 miles under the personal direction of Colonel Henry Champion and his son, Epaphroditus.  The beef was eaten by the starving troops in only five days.

In 1789 Colonel Champion married and settled in Colchester raising two prominent sons, Epaphroditus and Henry, who also served in the Revolutionary War.  Epaphroditus worked with his father in the Commissary of the Army and eventually reached the rank of Commissary General.  Henry became an outstanding military leader and also reached the rank of General.

Learn More About Col. Henry Champion >>
Learn More About Gen. Henry Champion >>

Current News!


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The Colchester Historical Society is proud to announce the successful completion of StEPS-CT, or Standards and Excellence Program for History Organizations (StEPs).

The Colchester Historical Society was one of 23 small cultural and heritage organizations which recently completed this intensive 2-year program.  CHS received support and training via curriculum-based workshops; coaching from a dedicated mentor; and access to a Connecticut Humanities grant fund earmarked for initiatives related to achieving StEPs-CT program standards.

Over the course of the program, the Colchester Historical Society achieved bronze and silver certificates in six areas of museum practice.  Through continued work on a self-study basis, CHS plans to continue to strive for gold certification in all StEPS Units.  “This is just the beginning,” said CHS Co-President Gigi Liverant, “we are so grateful for StEPS-CT for all that we’ve learned, and we plan to continue developing procedures and policies that establish Colchester Historical Society as the premier steward of Colchester’s history and heritage.”

“Our experience with StEPS-CT has been invaluable,” Angela George, Co-President of CHS added. “From improved signage that has increased visitation to the museum, to implementing current policies that guide our volunteers through daily operations, StEPS-CT has improved our organization.  We can now provide better programs to our community, and we are now better able to tell our audiences our local histories and preserve our heritage through our unique collections and images.”

StEPs-CT is a program of Connecticut Humanities and the Connecticut League of History Organizations, in partnership with Connecticut Historical Society, based on a curriculum of best practices developed by the American Association for State and Local History.  

Connecticut’s program was the first to integrate the national StEPs curriculum and is viewed as a model for similar programs across the country, according to Scott Wands, manager of grants and programs at Connecticut Humanities.

Connecticut Humanities, a nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, provides opportunities to explore the history, literature and the vibrant culture that make our state, cities and towns attractive places to live and work. Learn more by visiting www.cthumanities.org.

The Connecticut League of History Organizations (CLHO) builds connections among those who preserve and share the stories and objects of our past. Learn more by visiting www.clho.org

 

 

 

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