Cavendish, Vermont, New England USA

About Cavendish, Vermont

Windsor County
Including: Proctorsville
Chartered: October 12, 1761 (New Hampshire Grant)
Area: 25,369 Acres = 39.64 Square Miles [ Size Rank: 127* ]
Coordinates (Geographic Center): N 43° 23′ W 72°36′
Altitude: 920 feet ASL
Population (US Census, 2010): 1,367 [ Population Rank: 108* ]
Population Density (persons per square mile): 34.5 [ Density Rank: 114* ]
Full Census Info: Town  County  State

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

When Benning Wentworth granted Cavendish, eight members of the Cavendish family were in parliament or held positions of authority in the British government. The town probably was named for William Cavendish (1720-64), the fourth Duke of Devonshire, who was one of the most influential peers of the realm. The Duke was married to Charlotte, who was a daughter and heiress of Richard Boyle, the third Earl of Burlington, and a granddaughter of the Marquis of Halifax. At different times William Cavendish was lord lieutenant of Ireland and of Derbyshire and first lord of the treasury. In 1756-57 he was prime minister of England, and from 1757 to 1762 he was lord high chamberlain. The chief village in the Vermont town of Cavendish now is also known as Cavendish, because that name was used for the first post office in town when it was opened in 1800. However, for many years the village was known locally as Duttonsville.

Salmon Dutton came to the new town of Cavendish, Vermont, with his wife, Sarah, from Massachusetts in 1781. The following year he built the home in the village which was to be known by his name. Their house, the first frame building in the lower Black River valley, is now preserved at the Shelburne Museum as a classic example of early Vermont “continuous” architecture. Mr. Dutton was elected town clerk in 1782, and in 1786 he became the town’s first justice of the peace. He also served as moderator of the town meeting, as selectman, and as town treasurer. He is credited with having done the survey in 1784 for the first road from Cavendish to Ludlow (now Vermont routes 103 and 131). In 1812 he gave what was then the enormous sum of $7,500 to the building fund for the Cavendish Academy.

The other large village in Cavendish is Proctorsville, named for the family whose name also was used for the town of Proctor.

Activities & Points of Interest

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

Cavendish Community & Conservation Association
A non profit organization committed to a vibrant Cavendish/Proctorsville community that supports its human and natural resources, building a legacy of health, integrity and vitality for future generations.

Cavendish Historical Society

Contact Info

Emergency Services (Statewide): 911
Hospital: Springfield Hospital (Springfield) 802-885-2151
Town Clerk: Jane Pixley PO Box 126 Cavendish, VT 05142
M T Th F 9-12 and 1-4:30; W 9-12 and 1-6

Churches, Ministries, Charitables

Roman Catholic : Holy Name of Mary
United Methodist : St. James UMC (Proctorsville) 802-226-7819


Windsor Southwest Supervisory Union 802-875-3365
Cavendish Town Elementary School 802-226-7758

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”).
Plymouth Reading West Windsor
Ludlow Weathersfield
Chester Baltimore


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 Ludlow Electric Department 802-228-7766
    Telephone Fairpoint 866-984-2001
    Telephone TDS Telecom 888-225-5837