When Torrington's first English settlers, Ebenezer Lyman Jr. and his wife, Sarah, arrived in the hills of northwest Connecticut in 1737, they found little more than a lonely wilderness. Although the town grew steadily, it was only in 1813, when Frederick Wolcott built his woolen mill on the banks of the Naugatuck River, that Torrington was set on the path to becoming a significant manufacturing center. A railroad line completed in 1849 linked the town with larger population centers and further stimulated industrial growth. For the next 100 years, Torrington supplied the world with needles, woolen cloth, hardware, tools, sheet and rolled brass, bicycles, skates, golf shafts, ball bearings, and other manufactured products. Together, Torrington's farmers, laborers, builders, artists, and entrepreneurs created a dynamic and progressive community in the hills of Litchfield County.