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Creamery Bridge
Photo © Dave MacKenzie
For more of Dave's work, visit our Covered Bridges feature.

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About Brattleboro, Vermont

Click for Brattleboro, Vermont Forecast

Windham County
Chartered: December 26, 1753 (New Hampshire Grant)
Area: 20,885 Acres = 32.63 Square Miles [ Size Rank: 189* ]
Coordinates (Geographic Center): N 42° 51' W 72°34'
Altitude: 310 feet ASL
Population (US Census, 2010): 12,046 [ Population Rank: 7* ]
Population Density (persons per square mile): 369.2 [ Density Rank: 12* ]
Full Census Info: Town
  County  State

*Area, Population and Density rankings refer to Brattleboro's relative position among Vermont's 255 civic entities (9 cities, 242 towns, 4 gores and grants). Complete rankings are here.

New for Spring from Orvis

The French and Indian Wars prevented settlement of the original grant, and Benning Wentworth renewed the charter in 1760 and 1761. Originally Brattleborough, the town was named for the first grantee, Colonel William Brattle, Jr. of Boston, listed as a clerk in earlier records, later a member of the colonial militia. He is not known to have ever visited the town named after him, except perhaps to have become familiar with the area during various military forays through the area prior to the grant.

Throughout the remainder of the 18th century, the town's population grew and flourished. A gristmill and sawmill were built on Whetstone Brook. A post office opened in 1784 at the Arms Tavern, the current site of the Retreat Farm. Because the town was on a stage coach route, the economy benefited from the trade of grain, lumber, turpentine, tallow and pork. Industry and commerce thrived during the 1800s as well. The Vermont Valley railroad ran directly through town, providing a vital link north.

It was in 1888 that Postal authorities decided that all towns ending with -borough should be shortened to -boro. Vermont went along with it.

In the 1840s, Brattleboro developed a reputation as a resort town. Pure springs were discovered along the Whetstone Brook. The Brattleboro Hydropathic Establishment, more commonly known as "The Water Cure", opened in 1846. Wealthy patrons came from all over the world for treatments which included plunges in the cold springs, long walks in the woods and healthful food, sans alcohol or tobacco. The Water Cure operated until 1871.

Not long after the establishment of The Water Cure spa, the Estey Organ Company was founded. In its heyday, Estey marketed its reed organs as far away as New Zealand and employed more than 500 people; Brattleboro truly was the organ capital of America. The prosperity of the Estey family also spawned other enterprises in Brattleboro, including banks and a sewing machine company.

Estey is now but a memory (some of the factory buildings remain), but modern Brattleboro's economy is healthy and growing, primarily because the town has diversified its industrial and commercial base. Numerous businesses provide stable employment.

Material excerpted or adapted from Esther Munroe Swift's
Vermont Place-Names: Footprints of History
with the author's permission

Activities & Points of Interest

Goings-on in and near Brattleboro
Calendar of Events provided by the Vermont Department of Tourism & Marketing.

Fort Dummer State Park

Brattleboro Historical Society
An archive of 2500 professionally scanned historical glass plate photos from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Rural and small town American life is portrayed in this superb collection featuring images from New England.

Estey Organ Museum
The history and innovations of the Estey Organ Company, known world-wide for manufacturing reed, pipe, and electronic organs.

Historical Society of Windham County

Covered Bridge (With Google Maps and satellite images):
Click Here for a map of all bridges in Windham County.

Contact Info

Emergency Services (Statewide): 911
Police (non-emergency): 802-257-7946
Hospital: Brattleboro Memorial Hospital (Brattleboro) 802-257-0341
Town Clerk:  Hilary Francis 230 Main St Brattleboro, VT 05301
 M-F 8:30-5

Churches, Ministries, Charitables

Assemblies of God : Bethel Chapel 802-254-6687
Baptist : Baptist Church of West Brattleboro 802-257-0187
Baptist : First Baptist Church 802-254-9566
Baptist : Independent Baptist Church 802-463-6302
Buddhist : Himalaya Buddhist Center 802-524-6717
Christian & Missionary Alliance : Green Mountain Chapel 802-254-5258
Christian Science : Christian Science Reading Room 802-254-4924
Christian Science : First Church of Christ Scientist 802-254-5117
Church of Christ : 802-254-6906
Episcopal : St. Michael 802-254-6048
Jewish : Congregation Shir Heharim The Brattleboro Area Jewish Community 802-257-1959
Lutheran : Trinity Lutheran 802-254-4220
Nondenominational : Community Bible Chapel (Evangelical) 802-254-2910
Roman Catholic : St. Michael
Seventh Day Adventist : Mountain View 802-254-5088
Unitarian Universalist : All Souls Church 802-254-9377
United Church of Christ : Centre Congregational Church (Brattleboro Center) 802-254-4730
United Church of Christ : First Congregational (West Brattleboro)
United Methodist : Brattleboro UMC 802-254-4218


Windham Southeast Supervisory Union 802-254-3731
Academy School 802-254-3743
Austine School for the Deaf 802-258-9500
Brattleboro Area Middle School 802-257-3029
Brattleboro Union High School 802-257-0356
Canal Street/Oak Grove Schools 802-254-3740
Green Street School 802-254-3737
Marlboro College Graduate Center 802-258-9200
School for International Training 800-257-7751
Windham Regional Career Center 802-257-7335

Neighboring Towns

This is a basic geographic reference, intended to show relative location of adjacent towns. Directional accuracy is limited to 16 compass points. There isn't even the slightest suggestion that one can necessarily travel directly from one town to the next (as in "You can't get there from here").

Dummerston New Hampshire
Marlboro New Hampshire
Halifax Guilford Vernon

Businesses & Services

Northeastern Motorcycle tours

Places To Stay

Four Columns Inn (Newfane)
Tucked away on a tranquil village green, the inn sits nestled at the foot of a 150-acre private mountain.

Places To Shop

Vermont Artisan Designs
Fine art and comtemporary American crafts


Notes about utilities:

  • One electric or phone company indicates that company serves the entire town. More than one of either indicates each serves different areas of town.
  • A listed cable company MIGHT mean the entire town is covered, but not necessarily. More than one listed indicates each serves different areas of town.
  • Unless your area is one served by Vermont's only gas utility, your only option is bottled gas (any dealer).
    Cable Comcast 800-266-2278
    Electric Green Mountain Power 888-835-4672
    Telephone Fairpoint 866-984-2001

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    January 13, 2017