Groton was settled by Europeans in 1650 as a part of New London. Years later, in 1705 it separated. It got its name after the town of Groton in Suffolk, England. The town lies on the eastern part of the state’s shoreline, between the Mystic River and the Thames River. The land wasn’t suitable for the agricultural industry but the access to the ocean had advantages. The maritime industry played a major role in the town’s life. Whale hunting was the basis of local industry in the 1800s. In 1954 the world’s first nuclear-powered submarine the USS Nautilus launched here.