Brattleboro, Vermont

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Brattleboro, Vermont
Town
The Gothic Revival Municipal Center (1884), built as Brattleboro's High School, served the town in that capacity until 1951
The Gothic Revival Municipal Center (1884), built as Brattleboro's High School, served the town in that capacity until 1951
Motto: The One and Only Brattleboro
Location in Vermont
Location in Vermont
Coordinates: 42°51′0″N 72°34′56″W / 42.85000°N 72.58222°W / 42.85000; -72.58222Coordinates: 42°51′0″N 72°34′56″W / 42.85000°N 72.58222°W / 42.85000; -72.58222
Country United States
State Vermont
County Windham
Chartered 1753[1]
Government
 • Type Municipal
 • Town Manager Peter Elwell (appointed late 2014; took office January 2015)
 • Assistant Town Manager Patrick Moreland
 • Town Moderator Lawrin Crispe
 • Executive Secretary Jan Anderson
Area
 • Total 32.4 sq mi (84.0 km2)
 • Land 32.0 sq mi (82.9 km2)
 • Water 0.5 sq mi (1.2 km2)
Elevation 633 ft (193 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 12,046
 • Density 375.3/sq mi (144.9/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 05301-05304
Area code(s) 802
FIPS code 50-07900[2]
GNIS feature ID 1462049[3]
Website brattleboro.org

Brattleboro (US pronunciation: /ˈbrætəlˌbɜr/, UK /ˈbrætəlbrə/),[4] originally Brattleborough, is a town in Windham County, Vermont, United States, located in the southeast corner of the state, along the state line with New Hampshire. The population was 12,049 at the 2010 census. It is the most populous municipality along Vermont's eastern border, the fourth largest town in the state (trailing Essex, Colchester, and Bennington), and the seventh largest municipality in Vermont overall when the cities of Burlington, South Burlington and Rutland are included. Brattleboro is situated on the west bank of the Connecticut River at the point where Vermont's West River flows into it.

Noted for its vibrant and diverse arts community, the town is also home to the Brattleboro Retreat (a mental health and addictions hospital), two graduate schools; Marlboro College Center for Graduate and Professional Studies, and the SIT Graduate Institute (an international educational institution), plus satellite campuses of three colleges; the Community College of Vermont, Vermont Technical College, and Union Institute and University.

History[edit]

Brooks Free Library (1886, demolished 1971), Alexander C. Currier, architect (image c.1895)

Abenaki land[edit]

Because Native Americans in the region tended to name places and regions after their rivers or watersheds, the site of today's Brattleboro, the confluence of the West River and the Connecticut River, was called 'Wantastiquet'[5] by the Abenaki people, a name meaning "river leading to the west". Today known only by its English-transliterated name, the West River remains demarcated by New Hampshire's towering Mount Wantastiquet, directly opposite its mouth, and Lake Wantastiquet, near where it rises at its source. The Abenaki would transit this area annually between Missisquoi (their summer hunting grounds near the current-day town of Swanton) in northwestern Vermont, and Squakheag (their winter settlement or camps) near what is now Northfield, Massachusetts. The specific Abenaki band who lived here and traversed this place were called Sokoki, meaning "people who go their own way" or "people of the lonely way". The Abenaki's inclusive name for what is now Vermont was "Ndakinna" ("our land"), and in the 17th and 18th centuries, as more Europeans moved into the region, their often vigorous measures of self-defense culminated in Dummer's War (also known variously as Greylock's War, Three Years War, Lovewell's War, the 4th Indian War, and in Maine as Father Rasle's War). Most Abenaki allied with the French during this period, and following what is now known as the French and Indian War (1754–1763), they were largely driven north or fled into Quebec, further opening the way for English – and later United States – settlements in the area.

Frontier fort[edit]

To defend the Massachusetts Bay Colony against Chief Gray Lock and others during Dummer's War, the Massachusetts General Court voted on December 27, 1723 to build a blockhouse and stockade on the Connecticut River near the site of what would later become known as Brattleboro. Lieutenant-governor William Dummer signed the measure, and construction of Fort Dummer began on February 3, 1724. It was completed before summer. On October 11 of that year, the French attacked the fort and killed some soldiers.[6] In 1725, Dummer's War ended.

By 1728, and in subsequent peaceful periods, the fort served as a trading post for commerce among the colonial settlers and the Indians. But violence flared up from time to time throughout the first half of the 18th century. In 1744, what became known as King George's War broke out, lasting until 1748. During this period a small body of British colonial troops were posted at the fort, but after 1750 this was considered unnecessary.

Although the area was originally part of the Equivalent Lands, the township became one of the New Hampshire grants, and was chartered (founded) as such on December 26, 1753, by Governor Benning Wentworth. It was named Brattleborough, after Colonel William Brattle, Jr. of Boston, a principal proprietor. Still, settlement activities remained tentative until after the 1763 Treaty of Paris, when France abandoned their claims to Vermont, part of the region which they had called New France.[6]

Hostilities having ceased, Brattleboro developed quickly in peacetime, and soon was second to none in the state for business and wealth. In 1771, Stephen Greenleaf opened Vermont's first store in the east village, and in 1784, a post office was established. A bridge was built across the Connecticut River to Hinsdale, New Hampshire in 1804.[7] In 1834, the Brattleboro Retreat for the mentally ill was founded by the bequest of Anna Marsh. In 1844 the Brattleboro Hydropathic Establishment was opened by Dr. Robert Wesselhoeft. This was the third water cure establishment in the country. Pure spring water was discovered near Whetstone Brook, and until "The Water Cure" closed in 1871, the town was a curative health resort.[8][9][10]

Whetstone Falls in 1907
The Brattleboro Retreat has been treating mental health disorders and drug addiction since 1834
Brooks House, built in 1871 and originally a resort hotel, is the largest commercial building in Brattleboro. Devastated by a fire in 2011, it re-opened in the Fall of 2014

Mill town[edit]

Whetstone Falls, very close to where Brattleboro's Whetstone Brook flows into the Connecticut River, was a handy source of water power for watermills, initially a sawmill and a gristmill. By 1859, when the population had reached 3,816, Brattleboro had a woolen textile mill, a paper mill, a manufacturer of papermaking machinery, a factory making melodeons, two machine shops, a flour mill, a carriage factory, and four printing establishments.[6] Connected by the Vermont & Massachusetts Railroad and the Vermont Valley Railroad, the town prospered as a regional center for trade in commodities including grain, lumber, turpentine, tallow and pork.[11] In 1888, the spelling of the town's name was shortened to Brattleboro.[8][12]

Renowned author Rudyard Kipling married a young Brattleboro woman, Carrie Balestier, in 1892, and the couple settled here, Kipling writing 'The Jungle Book' and other works and building a home, called 'Naulakha', just over the town line to the north in neighboring Dummerston. Kipling also wrote about local life in the early 1890s: heavy snowfalls, ox-teams drawing sledges, and people in the small towns beset with what he called a "terrifying intimacy" about each other's lives. He recorded the dearth of men who had left, going to seek their fortunes in the cities or out west, and the consequent loneliness and depression in the lives of local women; the long length of the workday for farmers, even in winter, often for lack of help; and the abandonment of farms.[13]

The first person ever to receive a Social Security benefit check, issued on January 31, 1940 was Ida May Fuller from Brattleboro.[14]

Geography[edit]

Brattleboro is situated at 42°51′15″N 72°33′31″W / 42.85417°N 72.55861°W / 42.85417; -72.55861. Due to its location in the southernmost part of Vermont, the town is actually geographically closer to the other regional state capitals of Albany, Hartford, Boston, and Concord than it is to its own state capital of Montpelier.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 32.5 square miles (84.0 km2), of which 32.0 square miles (82.9 km2) is land and 0.5 square mile (1.2 km2, 1.42%) is water. Brattleboro is drained by the West River, Ames Hill Brook and Whetstone Brook. The town is in the Connecticut River Valley, and its eastern boundary (and the Vermont state line) is the western bank of the Connecticut River. Hills and mountains surround the town.

Development[edit]

Both a commercial and touristic gateway for the state of Vermont, Brattleboro is the first major town one encounters crossing northward by automobile from Massachusetts on Interstate 91, and is accessed via Vermont exits 1, 2, and 3 from that thoroughfare. It offers a mix of a rural atmosphere and urban amenities, including a large number of lodging establishments. Brattleboro also hosts many art galleries, stores, and performance spaces, most of them located in the downtown area.

In 2007, after meeting certain qualifying criteria, Brattleboro's Selectboard passed a resolution designating itself a Fair Trade Town, becoming the second Fair Trade certified town in the nation after Media, Pennsylvania.

The town's densely populated center is located near Vermont's lowest elevation point in the Connecticut river valley. Because of the surrounding steep hills there is very little flat land, and many of its buildings and houses are situated on steep hillsides, necessarily closely bunched together. This concentrated topography and population density have helped to create a semi-urban, cosmopolitan atmosphere in the downtown.

Since the 1950s, additional construction and development have expanded outside the concentrated downtown area; in the west, south, and north of the township. The southeast quarter of the town, near to and abutting the riverbank, is where its population has historically been the densest, and is composed largely of one- or two-family houses, with apartment buildings such as "triple deckers" interspersed among them. Commercial and industrial operations are concentrated on the U.S. Route 5/Canal Street artery that cuts through the area. The town's high school and the Regional Career Center are also located in this section, as is Fort Dummer State Park, which is named after the first European settlers' 1724 stockade. The original Fort's site, however, was flooded in the early 20th century by a flood-control and hydro-electric dam built just downstream in Vernon, VT. There is an historical marker near the Fort's now-underwater site near the west bank of the Connecticut River; the plaque is located on Vernon Road (VT Route 142) at the corner of Cotton Mill Hill.

The western section of town, built up around VT's east-west Route 9, was formally designated a village in 2005. It is mostly lower-density residential in character, and features the state's largest mobile home park and several planned housing developments and subdivisions. Away from the Route 9 conduit, other parts of western Brattleboro and some areas north of the West River have a decidedly rural character, with dirt roads, sparse housing, wooded Green Mountains foothills, and the last few farms left in the town following the 1970s' decline of the dairy industry. At its peak, the immediate Brattleboro area had over 170 farms; there are now less than a dozen remaining.

The section of Brattleboro north of the West River, formerly farmland, was mostly subdivided and developed during the 1960s and 1970s following the construction of Interstate 91, which runs north-south through the town. The area has little residential development and is dominated by larger commercial and industrial establishments and suburban-style shopping areas along Putney Road (VT Route 5), including seven hotels and motels located within a short distance of each other. C&S Wholesale Grocers, the northeast's largest regional food distributor, made its headquarters here until 2005, when they moved their administrative offices to Keene, New Hampshire; however, because of close proximity to Interstate 91, C&S still operates a large shipping and warehouse facility here.[15] Brattleboro is also the headquarters of the Holstein/Friesian Cattle Association, which houses and maintains the worldwide registry for these two cattle breeds.


A 'bird's-eye' view of Brattleboro, looking westward from near the summit of New Hampshire's Mount Wantastiquet, taken in 1905. In the foreground is Island Park, a recreational area that was mostly washed away by floods in the early 20th century, before flood-control dams were build upriver.

Climate[edit]

Brattleboro experiences a humid continental climate (Köppen Dfa) with cold, snowy winters and hot, humid summers. The town can experience snowfall as early as November and as late as April, and in the adjacent mountains and high country as late as May. Nor'easters often come with the potential of dumping a foot or more of snow on Brattleboro when they move through; such storms are not uncommon during the winter months. Summers are warm to hot and generally humid, with abundant sunshine and heavy showers and thunderstorms associated with passing cold fronts. Tornadoes are rare.

The record high is 100 °F (38 °C), set in 1955, and the record low is −33 °F (−36 °C), set in 1958. In terms of average annual precipitation, May is typically the wettest month, and February is the driest. Brattleboro averages 92.58 inches (235 cm) of snow annually.[16]

Brattleboro lies in USDA plant hardiness zone 5a.[17]

Climate data for Brattleboro, Vermont
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 62
(17)
65
(18)
83
(28)
97
(36)
95
(35)
100
(38)
99
(37)
100
(38)
100
(38)
91
(33)
78
(26)
68
(20)
100
(38)
Average high °F (°C) 32
(0)
36
(2)
45
(7)
57
(14)
70
(21)
79
(26)
84
(29)
82
(28)
73
(23)
62
(17)
49
(9)
36
(2)
58.8
(14.8)
Average low °F (°C) 11
(−12)
13
(−11)
24
(−4)
34
(1)
45
(7)
54
(12)
59
(15)
57
(14)
49
(9)
37
(3)
29
(−2)
18
(−8)
35.8
(2)
Record low °F (°C) −30
(−34)
−33
(−36)
−19
(−28)
5
(−15)
22
(−6)
31
(−1)
39
(4)
36
(2)
24
(−4)
10
(−12)
−16
(−27)
−24
(−31)
−33
(−36)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 3.92
(99.6)
3.15
(80)
3.94
(100.1)
3.97
(100.8)
4.32
(109.7)
4.07
(103.4)
3.87
(98.3)
4.20
(106.7)
3.78
(96)
4.03
(102.4)
4.13
(104.9)
3.69
(93.7)
47.07
(1,195.6)
Source: The Weather Channel[18]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1840 2,624
1850 3,816 45.4%
1860 3,855 1.0%
1870 4,933 28.0%
1880 5,880 19.2%
1890 6,862 16.7%
1900 6,640 −3.2%
1910 7,541 13.6%
1920 8,332 10.5%
1930 9,816 17.8%
1940 10,983 11.9%
1950 11,522 4.9%
1960 11,734 1.8%
1970 12,239 4.3%
1980 11,886 −2.9%
1990 12,241 3.0%
2000 12,005 −1.9%
2010 12,046 0.3%

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 12,005 people, 5,364 households, and 2,880 families residing in the town. Almost all of the population is concentrated in two census-designated places identified in the town: Brattleboro and West Brattleboro. The results of the 2010 census indicate very little change in the overall number of people living in the Town. Despite this, Brattleboro remains the most populous town along Vermont's eastern border.

The population density of the town was 375.3 people per square mile (144.9/km2). There were 5,686 housing units at an average density of 177.7 per square mile (68.6/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 94.06% White, 1.13% Black or African American, 0.26% Native American, 1.67% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.55% from other races, and 2.28% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.67% of the population.

There were 5,364 households out of which 27.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.8% were married couples living together, 12.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 46.3% were non-families. 37.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.15 and the average family size was 2.84.

In the town the population was spread out with 22.3% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 29.2% from 25 to 44, 25.3% from 45 to 64, and 16.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 84.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 79.9 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $31,997, and the median income for a family was $44,267. Males had a median income of $31,001 versus $25,329 for females. The per capita income for the town was $19,554. About 9.2% of families and 13.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.0% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.

Government[edit]

Brattleboro employs a Representative Town Meeting local government, wherein its citizens are represented at-large by a Select Board of five members, and by several dozen Town Representatives elected from three municipal districts. The Select Board is considered the 'executive branch' of town government; its five members being elected to fill three one-year positions and two three-year positions. In turn, the Select Board hires and supervises a Town Manager.[19] The town's three districts also each elect a representative to the Vermont State Legislature.

Education[edit]

Brattleboro has a diverse mix of public and private primary, secondary and post-secondary schools and career centers. Downtown, Marlboro College, whose undergraduate campus is in the adjacent town of Marlboro, VT, operates a large and modern Graduate Center building.[20] The Community College of Vermont and Vermont Technical College also have campuses in Brattleboro;[21] as of the 2014 fall semester, they are located in the downtown's newly-renovated Brooks House. Brattleboro is also home to the New England Academic Center of Union Institute and University, housed in the Marlboro College Graduate Center building.

SIT Graduate Institute, formerly known as World Learning / the School for International Training, is a private graduate institute in northern Brattleboro. An outgrowth of the Experiment in International Living, which was founded in 1932 and originally based in nearby Putney, VT, the Institute offers Masters degrees in five internationally-oriented concentrations.[22] Coming from all global regions, its students and faculty help give Brattleboro a decidedly eclectic and multi-cultural atmosphere.

Brattleboro currently has three public K-12 elementary schools. They are:[23]

  • Green Street School
  • Canal Street/Oak Grove School
  • Academy School

There is one public middle school, the Brattleboro Area Middle School (BAMS),[24] and one public high school, the Brattleboro Union High School (BUHS).[25] The Windham Southeast Supervisory Union,[26] which oversees the public school system in the southeastern corner of Windham County, also administers a dedicated vocational education unit, the Windham Regional Career Center.[27]

Parks and recreation[edit]

The town operates and maintains the Gibson-Aiken Center, a large recreation and community activities facility, located downtown on Main Street,[28] along with a number of parks and outdoor recreation centers, including Living Memorial Park, whose features include an outdoor swimming pool and a municipal skiing facility. There are bicycle lanes on Putney Road in the northern portion of town and on a short segment of Western Avenue in West Brattleboro. Open during the summer months, Fort Dummer State Park is named for, and located near, the original site of a Dummer's War-era stockade. The state park consists of 218 acres of protected forest, featuring hiking trails and a State campground, just south of the population center on wooded hills overlooking the Connecticut River.[29]

Brattleboro sees a substantial seasonal influx of recreational skiiers and snowboarders, many of them bound for the resorts at nearby Mount Snow and Stratton, but it is also a winter sports destination in and of itself. The town played an important role in the development and popularization of the skiing industry as a winter sport, with pioneering Brattleboro native and Dartmouth College alumnus Fred Harris,[30] founder of the Dartmouth Outing Club (1909–10),[31] also establishing the Brattleboro Outing Club (in 1922),[32] contributing to the first North American use of motor-driven ski lifts, and building the Harris Hill olympic-scale ski jumping facility,[33] the site of international competitions every February that still attract daring ski-jumping athletes from all over the world.

Transportation[edit]

Amtrak train in Brattleboro
United States Navy Seabees Bridge over the Connecticut River

Rail[edit]

Amtrak, the national passenger rail system, operates its Vermonter service daily through Brattleboro, connecting the town by rail with Washington, D.C. and St. Albans, Vermont and many stations in between. Brattleboro was recently part of a $70 million re-alignment of the Vermonter's route to the old Montrealer route, restoring passenger rail service between Brattleboro and the western Massachusetts cities of Northampton and Greenfield.[34]

Bus[edit]

Greyhound, the national commercial bus service, maintains routes with a stop in Brattleboro, at a service station on Canal Street near Interstate 91's Exit 1. In the spring of 2014, Greyhound announced the re-commencement of regular bus service from Brattleboro to Boston with stops in Keene and Nashua, New Hampshire.[35]

Connecticut River Transit (CRT), whose bus service is known as the 'The Current', operates what was formerly known as Brattleboro's 'BeeLine' bus service Monday through Saturday between the hours of 6:00 am and 6:30 pm, on their Red, Blue, and White Lines.[36] These three lines conjoin to move residents throughout the basically T-shaped street map topography of the town. 'The Current' also provides a weekday commuter bus line between Brattleboro and Bellows Falls. The Deerfield Valley Transit Association's (DVTA) 'MOOver' bus operates daily between Brattleboro and the town of Wilmington, VT as well.[37]

In late 2014, Connecticut River Transit announced a pending merger with Deerfield Valley Transit Association, which is expected to be finalized by July 2015.[38] It is anticipated that the resulting entity will be known as 'Southeast Vermont Transit'.

Roads and highways[edit]

Brattleboro is crossed by six highways, including one Interstate freeway. They are:

Vermont Route 9 runs from the New York border with Vermont, west of Bennington, traverses the southern backbone of the Green Mountains well west of Brattleboro, and eventually arrives in the heart of Brattleboro's downtown as High Street. Its other local names are The Molly Stark Trail, Marlboro Road, Western Avenue, Main Street, and Putney Road. It merges with U.S. Route 5 at the intersection of Main and High Streets, then runs north with Main Street into Putney Road then to the roundabout at Interstate 91's Exit 3, where it diverges from Route 5 and runs eastward into New Hampshire, becoming New Hampshire Route 9.

U.S. Route 5 enters Brattleboro at its border with the town of Guilford and runs north-south, through downtown, eventually exiting Brattleboro at its northern border with the town of Dummerston. Route 5's local names are Canal Street, Main Street, and Putney Road. Southbound, Route 5 detours along Park Place and part of Linden Street, as part of a one-way 'traffic triangle' at the north end of Main Street. Route 5, designated throughout Vermont as the Connecticut River Byway, is the only scenic byway in Vermont to receive national byway status.[39][40]

Scenic Vermont Route 30 has its southern terminus in Brattleboro at the intersection of Park Place and Linden Street. From this point, it runs for about 12 miles on a very gently graded roadbed along the West River's southern bank, affording a stunning vista and connecting Brattleboro with picturesque New England towns and recreational areas elsewhere in Windham County and Vermont. Its wide riverside paved shoulder making it a favorite with cyclists, Route 30 exits Brattleboro at its border with Dummerston. Its local names within Brattleboro are Linden Street and West River Road.

Interstate 91, originating in Connecticut and terminating at the Canadian border, runs north-south through town arcing westward around the town center. Its first three Vermont exits are in Brattleboro: Exit 1 serves the southern part of town, Exit 2 serves the western section of town connecting to local ski areas via Route 9, and Exit 3 serves the northern section of town and neighboring southwest New Hampshire. I-91's majestic twin-structure West River Bridge is currently (2015) being rebuilt with a completely new design.

Vermont Route 119 begins at a 5-way intersection locally known as "Malfunction Junction" with US Route 5 and VT Route 142. It continues east with an at-grade crossing of the New England Central Railroad just before crossing into New Hampshire over the Connecticut River, whose border lies just 0.08 miles (0.13 km) from the road's western end.

Vermont Route 142 begins at Malfunction Junction (mentioned above), continuing southward, closely paralleling the New England Central Railroad for much of its length within town. Its local names are Vernon Street and Vernon Road, as it continues southward into the town of Vernon and eventually into Massachusetts.


Downtown Brattleboro, as seen across the Connecticut River, from New Hampshire

Culture[edit]

Print media[edit]

The town is home to the Brattleboro Reformer (est. 1876), a daily newspaper with a circulation of just over 7800, and The Commons (est. 2006), a non-profit community weekly newspaper with a distribution of about 8,800.[41] The Parent Express, a community newspaper, circulates in Brattleboro; Keene, New Hampshire; and throughout Windham County, Vermont and Cheshire County, New Hampshire.[42]

Radio and television[edit]

There are several radio stations which broadcast from Brattleboro.

FM
AM

Comcast is the major supplier of cable television programming for Brattleboro. Local network news affiliates they carry include all of the major Boston-area news affiliates, as well as WMUR (ABC) from Manchester, New Hampshire and WCAX (CBS) from Burlington. Also carried on Comcast in Brattleboro are WTEN's (Albany ABC affiliate) and WPTZ's (Burlington market NBC affiliate) semi-satellite stations WCDC and WNNE, shown on channels 19 and 13, respectively. DirecTV, in addition to the Boston and Burlington local networks Comcast shows, also provides Fox 44 and WVNY out of the Burlington television market to their Brattleboro subscribers.

Arts and events[edit]

A contestant airborne on the Harris Hill ski jumping venue
New England Youth Theatre
Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, formerly Union Station
The Jeremiah Beal Museum of the Brattleboro Historical Society

Brattleboro has a thriving arts community. It was listed recently in John Villani's book The 100 Best Small Art Towns in America,[48] in which it was ranked #9 among 'arts towns' with a population of 30,000 or under.

On the first Friday of every month, an event known as Gallery Walk[49] is held, in which galleries, artists, and arts organizations open their doors to the public to display new work or hold performances. Included in the organizations that participate are the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center,[50] the Hooker-Dunham Theater and Gallery,[51] the In-Sight Photography Project,[52] River Gallery School,[53] Through the Music,[54] and the Windham Art Gallery.[55]

Other notable arts organizations in Brattleboro include the Brattleboro Music Center,[56] the Vermont Theatre Company,[57] the New England Youth Theater,[58] the Brattleboro Women's Chorus,[59] the New England Center for Circus Arts (NECCA)[60] the Vermont Performance Lab[61] and the Vermont Jazz Center.[62]

Annual events in Brattleboro include:

  • The Winter Carnival in February.[63]
  • Harris Hill ski-jumping competition in February.[64]
  • Women's Film Festival in March[65]
  • Maple Open House Weekend in March.[66]
  • River Gallery School benefit auction in March.[67]
  • Taste of the Town in May.[68]
  • Slow Living Summit, late May or early June, just prior to Strolling of the Heifers weekend[69]
  • The Strolling of the Heifers parade and festival, the first full weekend in June.[70]
  • Vermont Theatre Company's Shakespeare-in-the-Park in June and July.[71]
  • Brattleboro Free Folk Festival, begun in 2003.
  • Brattleboro Literary Festival in October.[72]
  • Brattleboro Film Festival first two weeks of November www.brattleborofilmfestival.org

Sites of interest[edit]

Health care[edit]

  • Brattleboro is home to the Brattleboro Memorial Hospital, a 61-bed community hospital serving southeastern Vermont since 1904. As of 2014, the hospital has 137 primary care and specialist physicians on its staff.[73]
  • Brattleboro is also home to the Brattleboro Retreat, a large private, non-profit psychiatric hospital founded by a bequest of Anna Hunt Marsh in 1834. It sits on a 1,000 acre parcel of land north of downtown overlooking the southern bank of the West River. The Retreat was one of the first acute mental health care facilities founded in the United States, and is considered a pioneer in this field.[74] It is the third largest employer in the town, and 45th largest in Vermont, with a workforce of about 400 as of 2013.[75]
  • Health Care & Rehabilitation Services of Vermont (HCRS) provides Brattleboro, and the rest of Windham and Windsor Counties, with outpatient services for mental health, substance abuse and developmental disabilities. The agency is headquartered in Springfield.

Law enforcement[edit]

The Brattleboro Police Department is the principal law enforcement agency for the town, as well as West Brattleboro. The current Chief of Police is Michael Fitzgerald.[76]

The Windham County Sheriff's Department provides prisoner transport and serves civil documents, such as subpoenas, across Brattleboro and the rest of Windham County. The current Sheriff is Keith Clark.[77]

The Vermont State Police have a substation in West Brattleboro on Western Avenue and also serve the town.[78]

Notable people[edit]

Brattleboro is notable for having been home to two Nobel Laureates in Literature: Rudyard Kipling (awarded 1907) and Saul Bellow (awarded 1976)

In popular culture[edit]

  • Brattleboro is the setting for much of H. P. Lovecraft's story The Whisperer in Darkness.[79]
  • Brattleboro is the birthplace and burial site of William Morris Hunt, noted and influential 19th-century American painter.
  • Brattleboro is mentioned repeatedly in David Foster Wallace's novel Infinite Jest.[80]
  • Brattleboro is the setting of multiple stories in Jacob M. Appel's collection Scouting for the Reaper.
  • The popular Joe Gunther mystery series written by Archer Mayor is largely set in Brattleboro.[81]
  • Brattleboro is where the title character in Tom Taylor's play Our American Cousin meets his English relatives, leading to his trip to England where the events of the play take place.
  • In the comedy movie Super Troopers, Lieutenant Arcot "Thorny" Ramathorn suggests that Brattleboro would be a good town to move to since his station is going to be shut down.
  • The psychiatric hospital in the 2011 action movie Sucker Punch is located in Brattleboro.
  • Brattleboro voted in support of a measure calling on the town's police force to arrest and indict President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney in March 2008. The vote was 2012–1795.[82]
  • Brattleboro placed 11th on "The 20 Best Small Towns in America of 2012" list by Smithsonian Magazine in May 2012.[83]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Sanford 1986, p. 20.
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  4. ^ Wells, John C. (2008), Longman Pronunciation Dictionary (3rd ed.), Longman, p. 101, ISBN 9781405881180 
  5. ^ DeLorme (1996). Vermont Atlas & Gazetteer. Yarmouth, Maine: DeLorme. ISBN 0-89933-016-9.
  6. ^ a b c A. J. Coolidge & J. B. Mansfield, ''A History and Description of New England;'' Boston, Massachusetts 1859. Books.google.com.
  7. ^ Brattleboro in 1824. Web.archive.org (October 27, 2009).
  8. ^ a b Brattleboro. Virtual Vermont.
  9. ^ Nichols, Mary S. Gove (1855). "Experience in the Water Cure: A familiar exposition of the Principles and Results of Water Treatment, in the Cure of Acute and Chronic Diseases". in Fowlers and Wells' Water-Cure Library: Embracing all the most popular works on the subject. Vol. 2 of 7. New York: Fowlers and Wells. p. 30 (n85 in electronic page field). Retrieved 2009-10-29.  Full text at Internet Archive (archive.org).
  10. ^ Cabot 1922.
  11. ^ Hayward's ''New England Gazetteer of 1839''. Newenglandtowns.org.
  12. ^ U.S. postal authorities decided that all towns ending in borough should be shortened to boro, and Vermont complied.
  13. ^ Letters of Travel 1892-1913
  14. ^ Her check number was 00-000-001 and it was for $22.54; Social Security Online. "The First Social Security Beneficiary". Social Security Administration. Retrieved June 28, 2007. 
  15. ^ http://www.cswg.com/location/brattleboro-vt
  16. ^ Brattleboro, VT Weather, USA.com. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  17. ^ USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map, US Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  18. ^ "Climate Statistics for Brattleboro, Vermont". Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  19. ^ Brattleboro Town Charter. "Town Charter". Retrieved June 29, 2007. 
  20. ^ Marlboro College Graduate School. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  21. ^ CCV Brattleboro, Community College of Vermont. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  22. ^ SIT Graduate Institute. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  23. ^ Schools, Windham Southeastern Supervisory Union. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  24. ^ http://www.bams.k12.vt.us/
  25. ^ "Vernon Brattleboro Union High School". Brattleboro Union High School. Retrieved May 14, 2014. 
  26. ^ http://www.wssu.k12.vt.us/
  27. ^ Windham Regional Career Center. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  28. ^ Recreation and Parks, brattleboro.org. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
  29. ^ Fort Dummer State Park, Vermont State Parks. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
  30. ^ http://brattleborooutingclub.org/history/fred-harris/
  31. ^ http://outdoors.dartmouth.edu/doc/history.html<
  32. ^ http://brattleborooutingclub.org/
  33. ^ http://www.harrishillskijump.com
  34. ^ Amtrak’s Vermonter returns to Connecticut River route to Springfield, Mass., starting Dec. 29, The Commons. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
  35. ^ Greyhound to resurrect service from Brattleboro to Boston, Brattleboro Reformer. Retrieved 2015-03-04.
  36. ^ Between Town /In Town Routes, The Current. Retrieved 2014-01-04.
  37. ^ Wilmington-Brattleboro, MOOver Route 10, Deerfield Valley Transit Association. Retrieved 2014-01-04.
  38. ^ http://crtransit.org/crt-news/2014/08/planned-crt-dvta-transit-merger/
  39. ^ Connecticut River National Byway, Explore Vermont's Byways. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  40. ^ The Connecticut River Byway. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  41. ^ Welcome to THE COMMONS – News and Views for Windham County, Vermont. Commonsnews.org.
  42. ^ Parent Express. Parent Express.
  43. ^ a b WKVT radio station. Wkvt.com.
  44. ^ Radio-Locator database. Radio-locator.com.
  45. ^ WRSI radio station. Wrsi.com.
  46. ^ a b WTSA radio station. Wtsa.net (April 21, 2009).
  47. ^ WVEW radio station. Wvew.org (October 21, 2012).
  48. ^ The 100 Best Small Art Towns in America, by John Villani, John Muir Publications, Santa Fe, NM 1998
  49. ^ Gallery Walk, Brattleboro, Vermont – a Monthly First-Friday Celebration!. Gallerywalk.org (October 4, 2012).
  50. ^ Brattleboro Museum & Art Center » home. Brattleboromuseum.org.
  51. ^ Hooker-Dunham Theater – Great Stuff's Happening!. Hookerdunham.org.
  52. ^ http://www.insight-photography.org
  53. ^ River Gallery School. River Gallery School.
  54. ^ Welcome to Through the Music. Throughthemusic.com.
  55. ^ May, 2008. Windham Art Gallery.
  56. ^ Brattleboro Music Center – Music School, Summer Music Camps, Chamber Music, Music For Hire, Southeastern Vermont. Bmcvt.org.
  57. ^ Home. Vermont Theatre Company.
  58. ^ New England Youth Theater. Neyt.org.
  59. ^ Brattleboro Women's Chorus. Brattleborowomenschorus.org (September 12, 2012).
  60. ^ New England Center for Circus Arts (NECCA). Necenterforcircusarts.org.
  61. ^ Vermont Performance Lab. Vermont Performance Lab.
  62. ^ the Vermont Jazz Center. Vtjazz.org.
  63. ^ Brattleboro - Non-profitorganisatie | Facebook. Brattleboro Winter Carnival. Retrieved on 2014-04-12.
  64. ^ Harris Hill Ski Jump. Harris Hill Ski Jump.
  65. ^ Women's Film Festival 2008 – Home. Womensfilmfestival.org.
  66. ^ Annual Maple Open House Weekend – Vermont Maple Sugar Makers' Association & Vermont Maple Foundation[dead link]
  67. ^ Benefit Auction at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center[dead link]
  68. ^ The Winston Prouty Center for Child Development. Winstonprouty.org.
  69. ^ Slow Living Summit, June 5–7, 2013. Slowlivingsummit.org (June 1, 2012).
  70. ^ Friday, June 7 – Sunday, June 9, 2013. Strolling of the Heifers (June 1, 2012).
  71. ^ Home. Vermont Theatre Company.
  72. ^ Welcome to the 2007 Brattleboro Literary Festival. Brattleboroliteraryfestival.org.
  73. ^ About Brattleboro Memorial Hospital, Brattleboro Memorial Hospital. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  74. ^ Mission and History, Brattleboro Retreat. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  75. ^ State Profile: Largest Employers, America's Career InfoNet. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  76. ^ Chief, Brattleboro Police Department. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
  77. ^ The Sheriff: Biography and Programs, Windham County Sheriff's Office. Retrieved 2014-12-18.
  78. ^ Brattleboro Barracks, Vermont State Police. Retrieved 2014-11-16.
  79. ^ The Whisperer in Darkness by H. P. Lovecraft. Dagonbytes.com.
  80. ^ Infinite Jest, pp. 901: "C.T. was the infant son she'd brought to the new union, his father a ne'er-do-well killed in a freak accident playing competitive darts in a Brattleboro tavern just as they were trying to adjust the obstetric stirrups for the achondroplastic Mrs. Tavis's labor and delivery."
  81. ^ Mayor, Archer. "A Brief Biography of "Joe Gunther"". Retrieved December 12, 2011. 
  82. ^ Associated Press. "Vt. towns put Bush, Cheney on arrest list" USA Today (March 5, 2008)
  83. ^ The 20 Best Small Towns in America of 2012", Susan Spano and Aviva Shen, Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved 2013-08-17.

References[edit]

External links[edit]