Wilton is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, in the United States. As of the 2000 census, the town population was 17,633. In 2007, it was voted as one of CNN Money's "Best Places to Live" in the United States. Located along Connecticut's Gold Coast, it is one of the most affluent communities in the United States. According to CNNMoney, Wilton has a median family income of $194,362 and an average home price of $1,006,017, making it one of the most expensive places to live in the country. Wilton was officially recognized as a parish in 1726. The original 40 families of the parish began their own Congregational Church and were allowed by Norwalk to hire a minister (Robert Sturgeon, who also became the town's first schoolmaster) open schools and build roads. During the Revolutionary war, in 1777 the British used Wilton as an escape route after their successful raid on Danbury. Several homes were burned, but the town remained intact. In 1802, Wilton was granted a Town Charter by the Connecticut General Assembly and became a political entity independent from Norwalk. With a strong anti-slavery sentiment by its residents, Wilton served as a stop on the Underground Railroad. Today, Wilton, like many other Fairfield County towns, is an expensive residential community with open lands (a testament to its colonial farming roots), historic architecture and extensive town services. Residents commonly commute to New York City, Stamford, and Norwalk, although there are a number of office buildings in town. AIG Financial Products is headquartered in the town. Its trading in credit derivatives essentially bankrupted its parent company, AIG, and helped create the global financial crisis of 2008–2009.