287 Capitol Avenue is located in the neighborhood known as Frog Hollow, which gets its name from its historically marshy conditions and low-lying land. The neighborhood once included a multitude of three- and six-family homes, built circa 1890, originally intended for immigrant workers who labored in factories lining the street that now houses the State Capitol, the Legislative Office Building and the State Armory. One of those family homes – strategically located on the corner of Capitol and Hungerford Street – now house our two companies, Sullivan & LeShane, Inc. and Sullivan & LeShane Public Relations, Inc.
The three-family brownstone is also known as a “Triple-Decker” or “Perfect-Three.” Before it was developed, the land was owned by R.S. Lawrence, for whom Lawrence Street is named. Trinity College then purchased several lots, owning them into the 1880s when demand for worker housing spiked. Companies located in the neighborhood included Pratt & Whitney, Pope Manufacturing and Billings Forge. A local developer named Patrick McKone – best known for the apartment building bearing his name, “The McKone” at 157-367 Main Street – more than likely built several of the houses in the area including Capitol Avenue, Oak and Hungerford Streets. In 1896, 287-289 Capitol Avenue housed two buildings on the same lot: one “Perfect-Six” at 283-285 Capitol Avenue, and our office building, 287-289 Capitol Avenue. McKone owned the entire corner, with four buildings on Oak Street and three on Capitol Avenue, including 279-281 Capitol Avenue.
287-289 Capitol Avenue is now all that remains of the original block, after the neighborhood underwent urban renewal in the 1950s and ‘60s.
Sullivan & LeShane embraces the unique historical significance of our building, and in keeping with that attitude, our office features a variety of rare and historical items – including photographs, documents and memorabilia – that recall the history of the City of Hartford and the State of Connecticut.