Rutheva Baldwin Brockett
- Written by William McDonald
Milford’s 1st Historian
Rutheva Baldwin Brockett lived all her life in Milford, born Jan. 14, 1923 and died Dec. 22, 2001. Milford was such a part of her life that she had engraved on her gravestone, “She Loved Milford.”
Brockett graduated from Milford High School in 1941 and the following year from Weylister Junior Secretarial College which stood on the corner of High and West River Streets where Milford High, now Parsons Center stands now. She worked for several companies in Milford for several years before having a family. She married Peter Brockett in 1944 and had five children, two boys and three girls.
Brockett’s interest in history had much to do with the fact that her lineage dated back to John Baldwin, one of Milford’s founders in 1639. She became a genealogist with which she was able to draw a clear line of her family’s history to the present day. It was with this skill that she was able to handle inquiries as historian of other people’s families as well.
She strove to learn as much as she could about the city’s history. She became Milford’s first city historian and served in that capacity for 10 years, from 1988 to 1998.
Among her contributions to the City, she wrote “A Walking Tour of Milford” which still guides tourists and locals interested in town history around the center of town from the green, past three historic homes, up to the Duck Pond and sites of the Regicide House and Clark Tavern which once hosted George Washington and then back to the three ancient homes preserved in the Milford Historical Society compound. She also co-authored the extension, up to 1989, of the WPA Sponsored book “History of Milford, 1639-1939” as part of the city’s 350th anniversary.
She and seven other high school classmates kept in touch for years having periodic gatherings as the Mothers Night Out Club. She was also a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and historian for Milford’s First United Church of Christ Congregational.
Mrs. Brockett was a piano player who always had that instrument in her home eventually becoming part of the Milford Senior Center Band that would entertain at various functions around the city.