Incorporated in 1806, Meriden was once proposed as the state capital. Although the plan was not implemented, the rural village quickly burgeoned into a major manufacturing center with the advent of the industrial revolution. Meriden advanced to become renowned as the "Silver City." International Silver Company and other key businesses, such as Parker Gun, Manning Bowman, Wilcox and White, and Handel Lamp, made Meriden a familiar name. Home to Gov. Abiram Chamberlain, Arctic explorer Hugh Johnson Lee, opera diva Rosa Ponselle, and baseball's Connie Mack, the city has also long been enlivened by a diverse mixture of immigrants and newcomers. Bordered on the north by dramatic traprock ridges, Meriden has a larger percentage of parklands than any other town in Connecticut, with Hubbard Park its crowning jewel.