Mount Philo in North Ferrisburgh was formed about five hundred million years ago, and ever since humans came along some millennia later, its summit has provided us with an unparalleled vista of the Champlain Valley.
As I walked out onto the boardwalk that crosses Eshqua Bog in Hartland, the trees opened out above me, a broad sky appeared, and the idea of trolls peeping up from under the resounding boards began to seem distinctly possible.
Historians debate whether historic change is made by forceful men and women, or by larger forces — trends and events that push human beings into actions that they may believe they are in charge of. But with Phil Hoff, it was a combination of both.
She may be the best-known, most widely recognized sculpture in the State of Vermont, and she stood at her post, high atop Vermont’s most important building, for some 80 years. But this week she was taken down, and she’s going to be replaced.
The publication this month of Green Mountain Scholar: Samuel B. Hand commemorates the legacy of a man who — in the process of changing his own thinking about Vermont — changed the way we understand our history, even today
It’s hard to imagine that Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Vermont author and ultra-respectable taste-setter in the Nineteen-Thirties and Forties, could become a figure of controversy, but that’s what’s happened.
Holiday dinners are not what they used to be for my family. They’re smaller and quieter. Parents and grandparents on both sides of the family are long gone, and Liz and I are now the senior generation.
Summers when I was a boy, we’d sometimes go to visit my uncle, who had a small farm on the shores of Lake Champlain. Occasionally we’d take his old rowboat and row ourselves out to a drop-off, where the water suddenly went to more than 10 feet deep. There, you could peer down and see weeds and sand on the lake bottom. It was that clear.
History lies in thousand-year-old layers at Chimney Point in West Addison, a place where the eastern and western shores of Lake Champlain come close together. It’s one of the two most strategically important points on the lake.
Our heroic Revolutionary War heritage sleeps quietly at Mount Independence. But the Mount, a point that thrusts north into Lake Champlain opposite Fort Ticonderoga, has important, dramatic stories to tell.
There could hardly be any prettier place to die than the hilltop field on which the Battle of Hubbardton took place. The flowers of midsummer — red clover, and Queen Anne’s lace — were blooming there the day I visited, as they might have been the day of the battle. The rocky cliffs of Mount Zion rose a mile or so to the southwest, and farther off to the southeast, the blue Taconic Range shouldered into the summer sky.
It’s obvious that Calvin Coolidge loved his hometown, the tiny village of Plymouth Notch. Even after he was President, he returned there whenever he could, went fishing as any country lad might, and did farm chores wearing his grandfather’s coarse homespun farmer’s smock.