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October 30th, 2014

Senate Report

How Towns Were Named in Washington County

  Washington County was originally named Jefferson County but President Jefferson’s Embargo, which banned trade with Canada – our biggest economic partner at the time, was so unpopular that the legislature changed the name to Washington in honor of George Washington. Barre was named to honor Colonel Isaac Barre, who played an important r...

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Northfield’s Governor Paine Supported Early Childhood Education

Northfield was chartered by Governor Thomas Chittenden on behalf of the state of Vermont on October 10, 1781 to Joel Matthews. As was usual of Vermont charters, provisions were made for a county grammar school, a college, the first settled minister, and a portion of land for the propagtion of the gospel. The original grant was 18,518 acres. Forty-o...

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Montpelier Becomes a City

  In August of 1781, the state of Vermont chartered the town of Montpelier to Colonel Jacob Davis and several associates. Many of these associates were also named in the town of Calais, which was chartered by the state one day later. It is thought that Colonel Davis selected the town’s name as well as the town of Calais. Davis named Calais for...

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Congressman Matthew Lyon

The story of Matthew Lyon focused national political attention on the newborn state of Vermont and offers a good illustration of the intensity of political strife in the 1790s. Lyon came to this country from Ireland as a “redemptioner,” meaning the cost of passage was paid by some American employer in return for a contracted period of work, usually...

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Middlesex

  Middlesex was granted on June 8, 1763 to Jacob Rescaw and 64 others by Benning Wentworth, the royal governor of New Hampshire. As was true for most of the Wentworth grants, one right was reserved for the first settled minister, one for schools, one for the propagation of the gospel, and one right to Governor Wentworth. Some scholars feel tha...

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Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC)

The following information is excerpted from “The Making of a Forester, An Autobiographical History” by Perry H. Merrill   “In March of 1933, President Roosevelt proposed as a measure of unemployment relief to put unemployed youths aged eighteen to twenty five to work in our forests. Congress quickly passed the Emergency Conservation Works Act...

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Women Gain the Right to Vote

Edna Beard, the first woman to serve in the Vermont General Assembly. Beard represented the Town of Orange, and was later elected to the Senate from Orange County.   The General Assembly of 1915, which enacted the direct primary, was considered a “progressive” group. Progressive legislation included Vermont’s initial workmen’s compensation act...

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Three Governors Illustrate Waterbury’s Productive History

  Waterbury was granted by Governor Benning Wentworth, the royal Governor of New Hampshire, to Joseph Abbott and 63 grantees in June 1763. Waterbury was originally six miles square, but in time, its land area was increased by accessions from Middlesex and Bolton. In 1763, many of the proprietors lived in Waterbury, Connecticut and New Jersey....

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Duxbury

  Duxbury was one of ten towns granted in the course of one day by Benning Wentworth, the Royal Governor of New Hampshire. The charter of the town reads as follows: “King George the Third, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France and Ireland, king, defender of the faith to all persons to whom these presence shall come, greeting. Know ye,...

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Barre: The First in Vermont to Celebrate Labor Day

Barre was the first community in Vermont to celebrate Labor Day. This took place at the Green Mountain Trotting Park (present location of Spaulding High School) on September 7, 1895. The event was sponsored by the Barre Granite Cutters’ Union. There were many speakers that day, and one prominent speaker spoke in the Italian language. A Barre newspa...

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