By Steve Rodgers
Booklet through Rodgers,Steve
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Additional resources for Country Towns of Vermont
Life didn't change much after the war ended and after Vermont became the 14th state in 1791, but at least they were safe from marauding redcoats and New York sheriffs, and the land they tilled was their own. Money was a rare sight, and beef, pork, sheep, rye, wheat, and corn were considered legal tender. Landowners could pay their taxes with grain, and their wives could trade spun wool or handknit socks for sugar at the general store. Page 5 If all this seems like a very large introduction to the small town of Dorset, it is because it is also an introduction to the history of the state of Vermont.
One of the finest examples of this construction is also on West Road, a bit north of the stone house. Now Marble West Inn, it was built by George Holley, himself an important man in the marble industry, for his daughter at her marriage to Spafford West, founder of the Norcross-West Marble Company. Built in 1840, in Greek Revival style, the house has foundations, porches, steps, walkways, fireplaces, and front columns of marble. The house is representative of Dorset in another way, too. The elaborate stenciling in the entrance hall was done by the premier modern stencil artist, Adele Bishop, a former Dorset resident and friend of a West descendant.
When the development of the refrigerated railway car made shipping fluid milk possible, dairy farming increased, gradually replacing sheep in importance. In 1864, Consider Bardwell built the first cheese factory in the state on his farm in West Pawlet, and a year later it became a cooperative; factory-made cheese slowly edged out farm cheese. Dairy farmers supplied the milk and shared in the factory's profits. Bardwell was already known for the axes and other tools he made as a sideline to farming.
Country Towns of Vermont by Steve Rodgers