Ivoryton is one of three villages in Essex, Connecticut in Middlesex County. Ivoryton Historic District, the historic district in the village, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on April 15, 2014.
The Ivoryton Playhouse, which is separately listed on the Register, is located within the district.
Ivoryton is roughly bounded by Main Street, North Main Street, Oak Street, Blake Street, Summit Street, Park Road, and Comstock Avenue. The area is known as a "well-preserved example of a nineteenth-century company town" and a world center of the ivory industry.
The area became industrialized when Comstock, Cheney & Company, an ivory import business founded by Samuel Merritt Comstock, an Ivoryton native, and his partner George A. Cheney in the 1860s was founded there. The district was one of several industrial areas in the Connecticut River Valley established during the late nineteenth century, and is also historically significant as a center for immigrants from Sweden, Germany, Italy, and Poland, who lived in worker housing areas throughout Ivoryton.
Pratt, Read & Company was located just a few miles away from Comstock, Cheney & Company along the Connecticut River, and these two largest American ivory manufacturers "commanded a monopoly on all ivory production in the United States." The area thrived between 1860 and 1938, and at its height the area employed and housed up to 600 workers. The National Register of Historical Places states:
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