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urban town (township), Hartford county, central Connecticut, U.S. Founded in 1679 as an agricultural community, it was known as West Division Parish or West Society. It became a wealthy residential suburb of Hartford, was named West Hartford in 1806, and was separately incorporated in 1854. Industry is restricted to a relatively small zone in the south end. The town is the birthplace of lexicographer Noah Webster and the seat of the American School for the Deaf (the oldest institution of its kind in the country), founded in 1817 by Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet. The University of Hartford (formed in 1957 by the union of three colleges, one of which dates from 1877) and St. Joseph College (1932) are in West Hartford. Area 22 square miles (57 square km). Pop. (1990) 60,110; (2000) 63,589.