George Walker Bush, the forty-third President of the United States, was born in Connecticut. He is a member of the Bush political family, with roots in the state extending three generations. Other notable figures from the state span American political and cultural history, including Roger Sherman, Benedict Arnold, Nathan Hale, Eli Whitney, John Brown, Prudence Crandall, P. T. Barnum, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Florence Griswold, Charles Ives, Wallace Stevens, Eugene O'Neill, Katharine Hepburn, Leroy Anderson, Joanne Woodward, Ralph Nader, Jacques Pépin, Phil Donahue, Marlo Thomas, Mia Farrow, Jane Curtin, Patti LuPone, Meryl Streep, Michael Bolton, 50 Cent, and John Mayer.
American author Mark Twain resided in his innovative Hartford home from 1871 until 1891, during which time he published The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. He lived in Redding from 1908 until his death in 1910. Meg Ryan lived in Bethel while growing up. Paul Newman, before his death in 2008, lived in Connecticut for most of his life and it is often referred to as his "adopted state". Many music stars, radio and television personalities, and athletes have made temporary homes in the wealthy suburbs of Fairfield County. Singer Gene Pitney was born in Hartford and grew up in Rockville. Noah Webster was born in Hartford in an area that is now part of West Hartford and was the author of the "Blue Backed Speller," now known as Webster's Dictionary. The Speller was used to teach spelling to five generations of Americans. Actor Dylan McDermott was born and raised in Waterbury.