Vermont – An Independent State

By | Jun 4, 2009

A little over one half of a year after the United States declared themselves as an Independent county through the Declaration of Independence, at a meeting in Westminster on January 18, 1777, Vermont declared themselves Independent. They provided their own postal service and minted money originally under the name New Connecticut.

On June 4, 1777 delegates from the region met in Windsor to write their constitution. They began with the Pennsylvania Constitution, which had largely been written by Benjamin Franklin. They decided to begin using the name Vermont and in their Constitution they banned the practice of Slavery, allowed all men to vote regardless of whether or not they owned land and created a Public School. Each of these clauses were first introduced in the Vermont Constitution.

The Republic of Vermont continued to govern themselves with the town of Windsor being the seat of government. They exchanged ambassadors with France, the Netherlands, and the American government until March 4, 1791 when they joined the United States as its fourteen State.

The name Vermont comes from the French, les monts verts, The Green Mountains. There is some question on whether term came from the green forestation of the mountains or for the green-hued mountain shale.

The major body of water in Vermont is Lake Champlain, named after the explorer French explorer Samuel de Champlain, who encountered it in 1609. The lake is the sixth largest fresh water body in the United States and is the border between Vermont and New York in the north-western part of Vermont.

Vermont’s population of 623,000 is only slightly greater than Wyoming’s 515,000. Wyoming is the United States smallest state in population. In size it ranks as 45th in size. At Lake Champlain the elevation reaches its lowest at 95 feet above sea level, while Mount Mansfield at 4393 feet is its highest. On average the state is 1000 feet above sea level.


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