State of Vermont,
First settled by white people in 1724, by the erection of Fort Dummer near the (present) site of Brattleboro
, then supposed to be in Massachusetts
The portion of country between the Connecticut River
and Lake Champlain
was known as “New Hampshire
grants” (see New Hampshire
). At the middle of January (15-17), 1777, the people of the “Grants” assembled in convention at Windsor
, and declared the “Grants” an independent State, with the title of Vermont
The territory was yet claimed by New York.
At the same time the convention adopted a petition to the Continental Congress, setting forth reasons for their position of independence, and asking for admission into the confederacy of free and independent States and seats for delegates in the Congress
This petition, presented to Congress April 8, 1777, was dismissed by resolutions on June 30, in one of which it was declared “That the independent government attempted to be established by the people styling themselves inhabitants of the New Hampshire
Grants can derive no countenance or justification from the act of Congress declaring the United Colonies to be independent of the crown of Great Britain
, nor from any other act or resolution of Congress.”
a constitution modelled on that of Pennsylvania
, and on July 8 a convention at Windsor
adopted it. Under this frame of
Trees Tapped for maple sugar, Vermont|
successfully maintained its independence and sovereignty until 1791.
In July, 1780, the mysterious movements of Governor Chittenden
, Ethan and Ira Allen
, and other leaders in Vermont
, excited grave suspicions of their loyalty, because of their secret correspondence with the British
In June the Congress
had appointed a committee to visit Vermont
, and had declared their disapprobation of the proceedings of the people in setting up an independent government before a decision of Congress should be made concerning their right to separate.
The governor of New York suspected a combination against his State, and intimated, in a letter to a member of Congress, that New York might be compelled to use all her resources for the defence of that State.
He also called the attention of Washington
to the subject; and he especially condemned the conduct of Ethan Allen, whose motives he suspected.
, who had been ordered by Washington
to arrest Allen
, wrote to Governor Clinton
at the close of October, saying, “The conduct of some of the people to the eastward is alarmingly mysterious.
A flag, under pretext of settling a cartel with Vermont
, has been on the Grants.
has disbanded his militia, and the enemy, in number upwards of 1,600, are rapidly advancing towards us. . . . Entreat General Washington
for more Continental troops; and let me beg of your excellency to hasten up here.”
There was general alarm concerning the perplexing movements of the Vermonters, which, in the light of subsequent history, was only a piece of coquetry for their benefit.
The shrewd diplomats of Vermont
were working for a twofold object—namely, to keep back the British
from a threatened invasion by a show of friendly feeling, and to so alarm the Congress
as to induce them to admit Vermont
into the Union
After the ratification of the Articles
of Confederation, in 1781, Congress offered to admit it, with a considerable
curtailment of its boundaries.
The people refused to come in on such terms, and for ten years they remained outside of the Union
Finally, on Jan. 10, 1791, a convention at Bennington
adopted the national Constitution, and Vermont
, having agreed to pay to the State of New York
$30,000 for territory claimed by that State, was, by resolution of Congress passed on Feb. 18, admitted into the Union
on March 4, to have two representatives in Congress until an apportionment of representatives should be made.
In the War
of 1812-15 the governor refused to call out the militia, and forbade troops to leave the State
; but Vermont volunteers took an active part in the battle at Plattsburg
During the troubles in Canada
(1837-38), sympathizing Vermonters to the number of fully 600, went over to the help of the insurgents, but were soon disarmed.
During the Civil War Vermont
furnished to the National
army 35.256 troops.
Population in 1890, 332,422; in 1900, 346,641.