|ARLINGTON, MANCHESTER & BENNINGTON|
Arlington is a historic village nestled between the Taconic Range and the Green Mountains of Vermont. Rich in beauty, history and the arts, Arlington is truly "the Vermont that lives in your imagination".
Capitol of the Republic Vermont became the fourteenth state of the union in 1791. Prior to that, Vermont had been an independent republic for fourteen years, minting its own money and adopting its own constitution. Vermont's first elected governor, Thomas Chittenden, a popular local farmer and statesman, set up his office in Arlington in 1778 in a house right in the center of town. Many a Revolutionary War figure found his way to this site to confer on affairs of the day. It is at this site, the seat of the first governorship, that the seal of Vermont was created on a powder horn by an officer on a mission to Chittenden. He looked west and carved the view he saw (a historical marker on Route 313 now marks the spot of the "State Seal Tree"). After catching the attention of the Secretary of State, Ira Allen, this handiwork was adopted as the state seal and remains as such, with only minor changes, to this day.Dorothy Canfield Fisher HouseThe first medical school in Vermont was a brick house built in the center of town in 1790. This house later housed the family of Dorothy Canfield, a noted author of more than 50 books, founder of the "Book of the Month Club," and friend to many local artists. Robert Frost stayed in the Canfield home while his Shaftsbury home was being renovated, and composer Carl Ruggles and artist Norman Rockwell were also often guests there. The Canfield family later donated the building to the town and it now houses a community center, the town library and the Russell Collection of Vermontiana.St. James Episcopal ChurchAcross the town green from the Canfield house stands the St. James Church. This church was founded by a community of worshipers who were probably meeting as early as 1765 under the leadership of Jehiel Hawley. The first church was built in 1787, and the present building was constructed 1829. In the church cemetery can be found many graves dating back to the 1700's.Norman Rockwell Homes and ExhibitionThe great American artist Norman Rockwell lived in Arlington, on the Battenkill River just down the road from the Inn from 1939 to 1953, 14 of his most productive years. Indeed, the residents of Arlington served as both inspiration and models for Rockwell's work.Although occupied by their current owners and not open to the public, you can walk by Rockwell's two homes on River Road. You can also visit the small Norman Rockwell exhibition in town. Located in a renovated "Hudson River" Gothic church in the center of the village, the Norman Rockwell exhibition houses hundreds of the artist's Saturday Evening Post and Boy's Life cover illustrations and prints.
Chiselville Covered BridgeThis beautiful covered bridge, a Town lattice design built in 1870, spans a deep gorge, and is the second highest covered bridge in Vermont. You might even recognize it - it has been featured in several movies.Kelly Stand and the Long TrailAn 1840's event that Arlingtonians love to tell about was the gathering of 15,000 people, traveling in wagons and on foot from four states, to rally in support of Presidential Candidate William Henry Harrison. This gathering took place in a tiny clearing off Kelly Stand road leading down into Arlington. The speaker that day was famous orator and U.S. Senator Daniel Webster. A monument now marks the spot where Webster's famous Kelly Stand speech took place. This marker is also only a short distance from where James P. Taylor in 1909 conceived the idea of a "footpath in the wilderness", which resulted in the Long Trail, the nation's first long-distance hiking trail. Here in southern Vermont, the Long Trail and the Appalachian Trail are one and the same.Candle Mill VillageIn 1764 the town fathers of Arlington offered 50 acres of land to the first man to set up a gristmill in the village. Remember Baker, an early settler, accepted the challenge and set up the first grist mill in Vermont in East Arlington. The first mill burned, but the existing mill has been on the site since the 18th century. The mill, along with a former hay barn and farmhouse, now house eight craft and gift shops along the Roaring Branch, a beautiful mountain stream. Also nearby is the East Arlington Antique Center, housing over 125 dealers in two historic buildings.
West Arlington Covered BridgeOne of the most photographed bridges in the state, this beautiful covered bridge over the Battenkill is a Town lattice design built in 1852. The bridge and the picturesque Church on the Green next to it have been photographed many times for magazine covers, books and articles about Vermont.
The towns of Bennington and Manchester are only minutes away from the Inn. Bennington is rich in revolutionary history with the Bennington Battle Monument and Museum, while the lovely village of Manchester is home to Hildene, Robert Todd Lincoln's historic estate.
Bennington Battle MonumentThe Bennington Battle Monument is a 306-foot high monolith which was built to commemorate General John Stark's victory in 1777 over General Burgoyne's Hessian and Brunswickian mercenaries, a military and psychological turning point of the Revolutionary War. The observation platform gives a breathtaking view of three states, and the tour of the monument gives an interesting overview of the battle and its significance during the war.Bennington MuseumThe Bennington Museum features extensive collections of American glass, Bennington ceramics, and artifacts from the Battle of Bennington, not to mention the largest collection of paintings by renowned folk artist Grandma Moses.Old First ChurchThe Old First Church, built in 1806 on the Green in Old Bennington, is a beautiful example of colonial architecture. The great American poet Robert Frost is buried in its cemetery along with many Revolutionary War veterans.
HildeneRobert Todd Lincoln, son of President Abraham Lincoln, chose to build his summer estate six miles north of Arlington in Manchester. The mansion and its surrounding gardens and trails are open to the public. The building is reminiscent of the elegance of days gone by, and typifies the lifestyle to which statesmen like Robert Todd Lincoln were accustomed near the turn of the century.Outlet ShopsA truly unique shopping destination, Manchester is home to factory outlet shops from an impressive array of designers and other well-known companies.