OF THE TOWN OF
THE town of Richmond, situated in the central part of the county,
is bounded north by Jericho, east by Bolton, south by Huntington and Hinesburg,
and west by Williston. Except South Burlington, it is the only town in
the county the charter of which was not granted by New Hampshire. It has
an area of about 20,000 acres, and was chartered by the Legislature of
Vermont on the 27th of October, 1794, being formed from portions of the
towns of Jericho, Bolton, Huntington and Williston, and on the 25th of
October, 1804, receiving an addition from Bolton.
Though the surface is generally uneven and broken, especially in
the northern and western parts, the town contains an unusual area of level
land, which increases the value of the territory for farming purposes.
The soil is generally rich and productive. Along Winooski River it is a
rich alluvial deposit, while in the uplands and other parts it is composed
of clay, gravelly loam and marl. The timber is principally beech, birch,
hemlock, pine, spruce, maple and elm, large forests of which originally
covered the town. The water course is formed by the Winooski River, which
flows in a northeasterly direction through the center of the town and receives
additions from numerous tributaries which afford good mill sites. There
are two ponds in town -- Jackson Pond, covering an area of about twenty-five
acres in the northeastern part, and Gillett Pond, about a mile in length
by eighty rods in width, lying in the southeastern part.
The first settlements made within the limits of the town were begun
by Amos BROWNSON and John CHAMBERLAIN with their families in 1775, on what
is called Richmond Flats, on the south side of Winooski River, in what
was then the town of Williston. In the fall of that year they joined the
ranks of those whom the fear of the British army was driving south, and
did not return until the close of the War of the Revolution. In 1784 they
returned to their farms, accompanied by Asa and Joel BROWNSON, Samuel and
Joshua CHAMBERLAIN, James HOLLY, Joseph WILSON and Jesse McFAIRLAIN.
The first settlements begun in the south part of the town, then
included within the charter limits of Huntington, were made by Ozem BREWSTER
and Daniel ROBBINS, about the year 1786. The first settlements along the
south side of Winooski River, between the mouth of Huntington River at
the site of Jonesville and the village of Richmond, were made by Amos BROWNSON,
jr., Matthew COX, Jesse GREEN, William DOUGLAS, Parley and Comfort STARR,
Clement HOYT, James and Peter CRANE, James HALL, and Nathaniel and Asa
ALGER. The first in the west part of the town were made by Asa BROWNSON,
Nathan and Henry FAY. Joseph HALL was one of the first to settle on the
north side of the river. Among other early settlers was James WHITCOMB,
who lived for a time on Richmond hill and finally removed to Bolton, where
he died. James BUTLER, brother of Governor BUTLER, of Vermont, lived on
the farm now owned by Cornelius RHOADS. He went to Ohio in 1816.
Jonathan CLOSSIN came to Richmond from Connecticut at an early day,
and settled on the farm now occupied by W. S. FREEMAN. He soon left town
because of the Revolutionary troubles, and remained away two years, finding
on his return that his land had been taken up by another. He then located
on the farm next south of the place now occupied by Jesse HUMPHREY, his
grandson. William HUMPHREY came to this town from Brookfield, Vt., in 1800,
and settled on the farm now owned by his son Jesse. He served in the American
army three years during the second war with Great Britain, enlisting as
a private and receiving promotion to a corporalship.
Henry FAY, son of John FAY, who was, killed at the battle of Bennington,
was born at Bennington in 1774, and died in Richmond in 1818, leaving a
family of ten children, one of whom, Jonathan, still resides in town. Henry
and Nathan FAY were engaged for years as clothiers at FAY's Corners.
Jesse GREEN came from Gordon, N. H., to Richmond about the year
1800. Many of his descendants now live in town. Dudley HIGLEY located in
the southern part of the town about 1800, and reared a family of eleven
children, only one of whom, Jerry, remained in town. Ebenezer FLAGG came
from Orwell, Vt., to Richmond in 1800, and settled in the southern part
of the town. Isaac B. ANDREWS settled in the same neighborhood fourteen
years earlier, and remained there until his death in 1849. Of his family
of nineteen children, three -- Ezra B., Elisha and Samuel -- now live here.
Solomon BATES, from New Hampshire, settled previous to 1800 on the farm
now owned by his grandson, Martin M., in the central part of the town.
Benjamin FARNSWORTH was one of the first tavern-keepers, on the old turnpike
road at the upper end of Richmond village. James NICHOLS lived on Huntington
River between Jonesville and Huntington, about midway. He died in Bristol,
Joel BROWNSON came from Sunderland, Sunderland, Bennington county,
very early, as has been stated, and settled on the south side of the river
on the place now owned by Mrs. Sarah MASON. Peter CRANE lived a little
less than a mile east of Richmond village on the south side of the river.
General Jacob SPAFFORD and his son Smalley lived on the very edge of Williston,
on the old turnpike road. Benajah HALLOCK lived in the south part of the
town on Huntington River. Clement HOYT lived on the farm now owned by HILDRETH
Brothers. Charles STEPHENS lived and died on the first farm west of HOYT's.
Benjamin BISHOP first settled on Richmond HILL, and afterwards removed
to the place now owned by U. S. WHITCOMB; he finally went to Burlington.
William EVERTS settled on Richmond hill, and thence removed to Bolton,
and again to Burlington. Major Ezra SMITH lived very early about three-quarters
of a mile west of Richmond village, where Thomas WHITCOMB afterwards kept
Nathan FAY lived on Richmond HILL with his father. Nathaniel ALGER
lived in the last house in Richmond, on the south side of the river near
Bolton. He there kept a tavern and store. Martin and Elihu BARBER, brothers,
lived on Richmond hill, the former between Fay's Corners and Huntington,
and the latter on the farm which Benjamin BISHOP had left Ozem BREWSTER
lived near Huntington line, where the TOWER brothers now live. Parley STARR
lived on the south side of the river on the place now owned by Colonel
Rolla GLEASON. Leonard HODGES was the first settler on the place now occupied
by William S. FREEMAN. He afterwards removed to the foot of Williston hill,
in that town. Most of the foregoing names appear on the records previous
to the year 1797, except those to whom a definite date is assigned. In
1797 first occurs the name of Abel COOPER, who had been one of the judges
of the Rutland County Court After he came to Richmond he lived on Richmond
hill at the junction of the roads towards Huntington. His son, Amos B.
COOPER, lived near him and a little west. Abram HOLLENBECK, who was first
mentioned in 1798, though he was in town earlier than that, bears the distinction
of being the father of John B. HOLLENBECK, the centenarian of Burlington.
Others mentioned in that year are Asa LEWIS, who lived on the south side
of the river about one and a half miles east from the village; William
CHURCH, who kept the first tavern in town, on the farm now owned by John
MASON. John RUSSELL lived in Richmond village on the north side of the
river, and kept a tavern back of the present store of JACOBS & WOODWORTH.
One of the most prominent families in town in early days, and whose
descendants are still numerous and respectable, was that of Jabez JONES,
the first of the name in Richmond. He first resided in Bolton, was its
first town clerk, in 1794, and the first representative of that town in
the Legislature. In 1797 he purchased two hundred acres of land of Ira
ALLEN, in what is now South Burlington, and soon exchanged it with Jesse
McFAIRLAIN, or McFARLAND, for the farm in Richmond now owned and occupied
by Albert TOWN, near Jonesville. In 1799 he married Hannah, daughter of
John FARNSWORTH, of New Hampshire. He died on the 9th of August, 1811,
in the forty-third year of his life, leaving a widow and five children.
Mrs. JONES afterwards married John RUSSELL, and died on the 25th of October,
1828, aged fifty-two years. The oldest child and only son of Jabez JONES,
Ransom JONES, gave Jonesville its existence as well as its name. Of the
four daughters of Jabez but one is living, Charlotte, who married Hiram
KING, emigrated to the territory of Michigan in 1831, and lives there now,
aged eighty years.
Edward JONES, brother of Jabez, and one of sixteen children, was
born in Claremont, N. H., on the 24th of January, 1775, married Lucy FARNSWORTH,
sister of the future wife of Jabez, when he was twenty-one years of age,
and went to live with his brother Jabez in Richmond. His wife performed
the journey from Claremont on horseback, carrying in her arms her eldest
and then only child (the mother of Henry GILLETT), who was born on the
6th of July, 1797. In 1800 Edward JONES removed to the farm on Richmond
hill now owned by John McGOVEN, where he remained until 1811. He then went
to the farm now owned by the TOWER estate, where, on the 19th of September,
1847, he died. He resided in town fifty years lacking four months, and
was a prominent man. Among the important positions in which he was placed
by the confidence of his townsmen, he was chosen to represent Richmond
in the Legislature in 1821, 1822, 1830 and 1831. He had nine children,
of whom but one, Milo, now lives, at Fort ATKINSON, Wis., whither he went
in 1834 Ralph, the eldest son of Edward JONES, was born February 27, 1799,
married Polly, daughter of David CASWELL, an early settler in Huntington,
and died December 20, 1834. Of his five children, only two -- Edward R.
and Ransom A.-are now residents of Richmond. Edward R. JONES was born October
8, 1822, in Williston, where his father lived for six years, and has passed
an unusually eventful life, having been in Wisconsin as early as 1844,
and in California during the historic period of its early gold excitement,
and a member of its famous Vigilance Committee in 1856. He came to his
present farm in 1881, the same farm on which Abraham TYLER, an early settler,
died of small-pox in 1800.
Colonel Rolla GLEASON was born on the first Tuesday of June (training
day), 1807, in Richmond, about forty rods east of his present residence,
and came to live in what is the rear part of his present dwelling house
when he was two years old. He is known throughout the State as a sagacious
and far-seeing politician and an uncompromising Republican. He was an active
member of the old militia, and was promoted through the various degrees
from quarter-master-sergeant to colonel. He was sheriff of Chittenden county
more than forty years ago; was a delegate to the national convention in
1856; was provost-marshal from May, 1863, to October, 1865; sent more than
three thousand men into the service of the North during the War of the
Rebellion, and among still other offices has been county senator and the
representative of Richmond. His father, Isaac GLEASON, came to this place
in 1805 from Shrewsbury, Vt, and kept a store on the site of the cheese
factory, succeeding Joshua CHAMBERLAIN and DODGE.
We have given a list of settlers at the beginning of settlement,
necessarily incomplete, including only such names as appear in the town
records and are remembered by the oldest inhabitants now living. All that
they did may never be told. They braved perils in coming here, they suffered
untold hardships in clearing away the original forests and cultivating
the rough soil of one hundred years ago, and died, most of them, without
having harbored a thought of being remembered as heroes -- their principal
incentive to labor and suffer as they did being to provide for those whom
Providence had placed under their care. The best part of man's life, the
domestic, is the hardest to inspect; but what was done by the early inhabitants
as members of the town organization is more or less completely recorded.
The town was organized in March, 1995, by the election of the following
officers: Joshua CHAMBERLAIN, clerk; Constant C. HALLOCK, constable; Felix
AUGAR, Benjamin FARNSWORTH, and Peter CRANE, selectmen; Joel BROWNSON,
Asa BROWNSON, jr., and Benjamin FARNSWORTH, justices. The first representative,
elected in 1796, was Jonathan CHAMBERLAIN. The records are rather meager
for the first few years. The first accessible item of interest appears
concerning a meeting held on the 5th of January, 1795, when it was voted
to set up a sign-post and stocks opposite "Esquire Joel BROWNSON's." The
first deed on record is a quit-claim of one-third of one hundred acres
of land by Amos BROWNSON to Joshua CHAMBERLAIN, in consideration of twelve
pounds, dated March 7, 1795. The second entry that appears is a deed of
one hundred and twenty acres by Abram SMITH to Governor Thomas CHITTENDEN,
for thirty pounds, dated April 23, 1795. In these records appears, too,
an interesting document, dated November 12, 1777, in which is recited the
fact that Heman ALLEN, of Salisbury, Litchfield county, Conn., in consideration
of one thousand pounds, deeded all his interest in lands in the towns of
Burlington, Williston, New Huntington, Hinesburg, Shelburne, Charlotte,
Ferrisburgh, Monkton, Colchester, Essex, Jericho, Milton, Georgia, Swanton,
and Highgate to Ira ALLEN, of Bennington. This reveals to some extent the
wealth of the ALLEN brothers in lands in Vermont; and while it is not to
be presumed that it explains their vigorous opposition to the claims of
New York grantees, it is sufficient to suppose that the desire of protecting
their possessions added considerable spice to their determined antagonism.
The general events of the war of this period having been written
in a former chapter, need no mention in this place. Richmond was not behind
her neighboring towns in sending men to the front at this time -- about
sixty being the number of her volunteers. Prominent among them were Captain
Roswell HUNT, Benoni THOMPSON, who went out as ensign, Captain MANWELL,
who enlisted as lieutenant, and Elihu BATES, Nathan FAY, Jesse GREEN, Sawyer
JEWELL, Abram SMITH and William RHODES. The following company is credited
to the towns of Richmond, Jericho, and Williston during the War of 1812,
and was commanded by Captain Roswell HUNT: Amos B. COOPER, Joshua WHITCOMB,
Timothy THOMPSON, John KIMPTON, Artemas FLAGG, CLARK HILLGAR, Iddo GREEN,
Joel BROWNSON, jr., Nathan FAY, Gershom FLAGG, Reuben SQUIRE, William REYNOLDS,
Samuel T. BASS, John MACKWELL, Anson BOYINGTON, Jeremiah TERRY, Enoch NOBLE,
Shubal BARBER, Josiah THOMPSON, Luther CURTIS, Barney SPOONER, John PAKE,
Chester H. NICHOLS, Merrill FELLOWS, Nathan ARNOLD, Samuel DOUGLAS, Elijah
HINKSON, Joseph HALL, jr., Joseph DOUGLAS, Daniel ROINS, jr., Asa GILBERT,
jr., Isaac HULLOCK, Richard DOUGLAS, Jared C. SMITH, Ezekiel SQUIRE, John
CHAMBERLAIN, Truman AVERILL, John THORNTON, Asa JACKSON, jr., Daniel GOODRICH,
Silas HUNT, William DOUGLAS, jr., Billings STRAW, Jesse GREEN, jr., Harry
BROWN, Stephen HULLOCK, jr., Anson HULLOCK, George SHERMAN, Adonson DEANEX.
There is at the present writing but one hotel in town, though it
is thought there will soon be one opened at Jonesville. The early hotels
have nearly all been mentioned in. the course of this chapter. Robert RUSSELL
erected the old brick hotel in Richmond village at an early day, which
stood diagonally opposite the present public house, and Charles HUNTINGTON,
who was for years the mail carrier between Burlington and Montpelier, was
the first one to keep it open for the public. J. H. RANSOM afterwards kept
it a great many years. The last proprietor before its destruction by fire
a number of years ago was R. B. COFFEY, who was also the first proprietor
in the present hotel. His successor was George W. ORCUTT. In 1884 P. M.
MANSFIELD succeeded Mr. ORCUTT, and on the 1st of February, 1886, was followed
by the present proprietor, G. E. BARNUM.
The hotel formerly open in Jonesville, which Henry GILLETT is now
re-building, was built originally by Roswell HUNT as early as 1815, and
perhaps earlier. After he left it it was used for a number of years as
a tenant house, until 1843, when RANSOM JONES, then forty-three years of
age, purchased it and repaired it. His first landlord was C. STEVENS, who
remained there until about the time of the opening of the railroad. Mr.
JONES then went in himself as proprietor and remained acting the part of
mine host until his death, on the 18th of July, 1858. Since then the house
has been kept by different men, and some of the time has been allowed to
Among those who were formerly engaged in the various manufacturing
interests of the town may be named Nathan FAY, who carried on the business
of carding wool and cloth-dressing at Fay's Corners, said to have been
the first works of the kind in the county of Chittenden. Silas ROCKWELL
early carried on the business of tanning and currying and shoemaking in
the same neighborhood, and was succeeded by Asahel MURRAY. MURRAY and TALCOTT
afterwards operated these works, and were followed by R. A. JONES and others
until July, 1884, when the buildings were burned. The last proprietors
were ELLIS Brothers. William RHODES, who has been mentioned before, was
a blacksmith and manufacturer at this place more than seventy years ago
(1804), on the site of the present residence of his son Nelson. On the
north side of the river, near the station at Richmond village, WINSLOW
& GAY were early engaged in trade, and were succeeded by D. P. LAPHAM
& Co. One DUMFRIES also had a hatter's shop on the south side of the
river as long ago as 1817, which was destroyed by fire. The first grist-mill
was erected by John PRESTON, father of Noah PRESTON, in the beginning of
the century, on the site of the present sawmill of S. & R. J. ROBINSON.
In 1815 James H. HUDSON built a carding machine and cloth-dressing works
in the same vicinity, which were destroyed by fire four years later, and
afterwards rebuilt by Daniel FISK. The site of H. H. FRARY's spool factory
was first covered by the saw-mill of Joseph WHIPPLE. Roswell STAPLES afterwards
operated a woolen-mill on the same site, and was followed by Marcus ROBBINS
& Co. Some time after 1850 MASON, JEWELL & GREEN started a steam
saw-mill and furniture factory on the south side of the river near the
bridge, and on the west side of the road, which after a number of years
of successful operation was burned. George BROWN afterwards operated another
on the same site, but was not so successful.
The oldest manufacturing interest now in operation in Richmond is
that of H. H. FRARY on Huntington River near Jonesville. Mr. FRARY manufactures
spools and turned goods, a business which he has here carried on since
1866. At that time he bought out the old woolen-mill formerly carried on
by Roswell STAPLES and others. In 1877 Mr. FRARY suffered a loss of about
$6,000 by the burning of his mill, but in four weeks he had rebuilt and
put in operation his present mill. His income is now about $10,000 or $12,000
The spoke factory and grist and cider-mill of S. & R. J. ROBINSON
stands on the site of one of the first mills in town. In 1801 or 1802 John
PRESTON erected there the first grist-mill in town, and was succeeded by
his son Noah. After the death of Noah, John HAPGOOD operated it for some
time, and was followed by Daniel PRESTON. The present senior partner, Samuel
ROBINSON, bought the property in 1868, and in five years was joined by
his son R. J. ROBINSON. The grist-mill is a custom mill. The spoke factory
turns out about 1,400,000 spokes a year, while about 400 barrels of cider
are manufactured every year in the other department of this varied industry.
In 1857 the carriage manufactory at Richmond village was established,
and came into possession of the present proprietor, Stephen FRESHETTE,
The creamery of H. C. GLEASON was started in the spring of 1885,
by the present proprietor, who makes about 600 pounds of butter daily.
A.E. CRANDALL first operated his saw-mill at Jonesville, in October,
1885, on the site of a blacksmith shop which had been used for twenty-five
or thirty years previously.
Historically the oldest store in town is that of E. T. JACOBS and
C. E. WOODWORTH, who under the style of JACOBS & WOODWORTH conduct
a business established much more than half a century ago by Henry HODGES,
who built the present store, soon, indeed, after the opening of the old
turnpike road. Trade, which before that had been confined to the south
side of the river, began to set in this direction, and Henry HODGES conducted
a successful business for a number of years, being finally followed by
his son, H. A. HODGES. After an experience of about thirty-two years in
this building, Mr. HODGES gave place to E. T. JACOBS, who carried on a
thriving trade until the formation of the present partnership in March,
1883. The dry goods and general stock of this firm is valued at about $12,000.
Salmon GREEN has been in the mercantile business in town since 1858,
when he went in with F. M. PIERCE, in what is now the hotel building. In
a few years this relation was dissolved and a new one formed between Mr.
GREEN and his father, I. GREEN, under the name of I. GREEN & Son. Soon
after his father retired from the trade and since that time the present
proprietor has been alone. He had a general trade there until 1876, when
he removed to the part of the village near the station and confined himself
to the grocery trade.
The store building now occupied by SAYLES & EDDY, at Jonesville,
was erected in 1856, by Amasa GROVENOR. I. W. SAYLES started a general
trade in it in 1859, and two years later was joined by his present partner,
A. EDDY. They now carry a stock of about $1,500; though in the palmiest
days of Jonesville they transacted about $12,000 worth of business per
The firm of SAYLES Brothers & Co., composed now of I. W., H.
L. and G. W. SAYLES, and Ansel EDDY, was formed in the spring of 1867,
though at that time an older brother, E. M. SAYLES, was one of the partners,
and died in 1897. They have occupied the present building from the beginning.
It was erected by E. M. SAYLES and his father, Steven SAYLES, and finished
in the fall of 1866. The firm now carry a stock of about $10,000 to $15,000.
The business now conducted by HILTON & STEVENS was established,
and the building which they occupy was erected, by HODGES & HUMPHREY,
more than a quarter of a century ago. Mr. HILTON came here in 1867 as a
member of the firm of FIRMAN & HILTON, the senior partner, R. FIRMAN,
having been in business here some time previously. The present relations
between Mr. HILTON and Nelson STEVENS were established in 1873. They now
carry a stock valued at about $10,000.
J.B. NORTON & Co., dealers in hardware, stoves, tinware, etc.,
formed their partnership on the 11th of February, 1885, succeeding D. J.
BURLEIGH, who had carried on the business about five years. His predecessors,
PLACE & YOUNG, were themselves preceded by G. E. BARNUM, who had been
here nine years, and whose brother, Jerome BARNUM, built this block in
George W. GREEN, dealer in furniture, succeeded Iddo GREEN in the
business about 1876. Iddo GREEN was by trade a carpenter and builder, and
for years had manufactured and dealt in furniture. He built a great many
of the houses now in town.
The boot and shoe store of E. E. MILLER has been under the care
of the present proprietor since March, 1886. C. H. PINO was in the business
here about two years previously, and was preceded by R. A. JONES, who had
carried on the concern for some time.
C.J. SHEDD began repairing jewelry in Richmond village in 1880.
C.W. HOWE has been engaged in the hardware business in town about
two years, and has occupied the present building more than half that time.
J.F. WHITCOMB established his trade in groceries in Richmond village
on the 1st of January, 1886. He carries about $2,000 worth of stock.
The drug store of E. W. FREEMAN was established by the present proprietor
on the 1st of January, 1886. The building was previously occupied by W.
The first physician to practice in Richmond was Dr. Matthew COLE,
who died in Burlington in 1809, and has been followed by Drs. Seth COLE,
Sylvanus CHURCH, Reuben NIMS, William FOSS, Carlos ALLEN, James M. KNOX,
G. P. CONN, George BENEDICT, Loren CHAMBERLAIN, William ROOT and others.
The present practicing physicians are Drs. G. W. BROMLEY, M. L. POWERS
and B. J. ANDREWS.
Dr. BROMLEY was born on the 17th of September, 1818, at Pawlet,
Rutland county, Vt., and received his medical education at the medical
college at Castleton, from which he was graduated in the spring of 1844.
He first practiced in Huntington until 1869, when he came to Richmond.
He and Drs. CARPENTER, of Burlington, and FAIRCHILD, of Milton; are the
three physicians of longest practice in the county.
Dr. POWERS was born on the 18th of May, 1852, in Ripton, Vt. He
received his medical education at the Homeopathic Medical College in Philadelphia,
and was graduated from the Hannemann Medical College at Chicago, in the
spring of 1877. He came at once to this town.
Dr. ANDREWS was born at Jericho, Vt., on the 11th of January, 1850.
He received an academical education at Fairfax, and prepared for the practice
of his chosen profession at the medical department of the University of
Vermont and in New York city, receiving his diploma from the University
of Vermont in June, 1885. He began to practice in Richmond on the l0th
of February, 1886. He is a grandson of Deacon Isaac ANDREWS who has been
mentioned as one of the early settlers of Richmond.
The legal profession has been represented in town by Harry BROWNSON,
Wm. P. BRIGGS, Wm. S. HAWKINS, Edward A. STANSBURY, Aaron B. MAYNARD, B.
E. B. KENNEDY, F. A. COLTON, Joseph W. ALLEN, P. K. GLEED, and at present
by S. Homer DAVIS. Undoubtedly the most prominent of those who have gone
was Wm. Penn BRIGGS, who was born at Adams, Mass., on the 14th of March,
S.H. DAVIS was born on the 5th of July, 1829, in Hinesburg, Vt.
He attended the academy at Franklin for a time, and afterwards fitted himself
for college at the Hinesburg Academy, but was prevented by illness from
consummating his plans for an education. He first studied law with C. F.
DAVEY, of Burlington, after which he studied successively with ROBERTS
& CHITTENDEN of that place, L. B. CASWELL, of Fort Atkinson, Wis.,
and finally with Hon. E. J. PHELPS, of Burlington, with whom he commenced
to practice after his admission to the bar of Chittenden county in 186o.
He came to Richmond in October, 1861.
Just when the post-office was established in Richmond is not definitely
known, though it was probably not far from the year 1800. The office was
originally and until the opening of the turnpike road, on the south side
of the river. We have not been able to obtain from headquarters at Washington
the list of postmasters that we desired, and are therefore obliged to trust
to those which are mentioned in Walton's “Register,” dating from the year
1824. That year was the last of the service of Moor RUSSELL, who was followed
by Mrs. Sally BROWNSON. Her successors have been as follows: 1829 to 1831,
Benjamin BISHOP; 1831 to 1837, Abraham SMITH; 1837 to 1841, Kilburn WHITCOMB;
1841 to 1843, Wm. RHODES, jr.; 1843 to 1844, Charles M. HUNTINGTON; 1844
and 1845, Kilburn WHITCOMB; 1845 to 1848, John DELAWARE, jr.; 1848 to 1849,
Saul BISHOP; 1850, John KENNEDY; 1851 to 1853, Charles M. HUNTINGTON; 1854,
Reuben NIMS; 1854 to 1862, Francis H. JOYNER; 1862 to 1869, J. L. MASON;
1869 to 1881, H. A. HODGES; 1881 to January, 1886, E. T. JACOBS ; and the
present incumbent, A. B. EDWARDS.
The office at Jonesville is first mentioned in 1852, with B. N.
JONES as postmaster. He has been followed by Jabez JONES, 1853 to 1854;
R. JONES, 1855 to 1856; A. H. GROVENOR, 1856 to 1860; H. McDONALD, 1860
to 1863; Ira W. SAYLES, 1863 to 1875; and Ansel EDDY, from 1875 to the
The town officers for Richmond, elected at the annual town meeting
of 1866, are as follows:
GREEN, town clerk; S. F. CUTLER, Edward HILDRETH and H. A. HODGES, selectmen;
A. K. JACOBS, treasurer; Albert TOWN, overseer of the poor; R. M. CONANT,
first constable ; Ezra STEVENS, S. F. ANDREWS, Frank F. FREEMAN, listers;
U. S. WHITCOMB, F. F. GLEASON, H. C. GLEASON, auditors; Giles HOWE, trustee
of the United States fund; Benton A. WILLIAMS, Henry L. BARNES, and C.
W. HOWE, fence viewers; C. W. HOWE, and H. H. FRARY, grand jurors; Arthur
ELLIS, C. W. HOWE, and Safford COLBY, pound-keepers; Edward BASSETT, surveyor
of wood and lumber; R. M. CONANT, George H. FAY, and Safford FAY, street
commissioners; Patrick HENLEY, inspector of leather; Henry GILLETT, agent
to prosecute and defend suits in which the town is interested.
At a town meeting held on the 5th of June, 1795, the town was divided
into six school districts. Since that time the highest number of districts
has been eleven, and latterly it was seven, until March, 1886, when the
town system of schools was adopted. There are now, counting the grades,
nine schools in town, three of the grades being in one building.
The earliest mention of religious affairs in the records appears
under date of December 6, 1796, when John HOLLENBECK, Asa BROWNSON, Ozem
BREWSTER, Leonard HODGES, and Ezra SMITH were chosen a committee to find
a place on which to build a meeting-house, and to report their action to
the town. Their report cannot be found. It seems that there was no regular
church edifice in Richmond until 1813, when the sixteen-sided church was
erected on the south side of the river by the united efforts of all denominations,
Wm. RHODES being the principal builder. Isaac GLEASON contributed the land
for the site of the church at the same time that he gave land for a public
common. It still stands a monument to the architectural ability of its
builders. It is constructed of pure pine timber, and is furnished with
interior galleries on all sides except at the side occupied by the pulpit,
which is elevated to accord with old-time notions of acoustic propriety.
The cost of its construction was about $2,500. It has not been used as
a church for a number of years, but is, strictly speaking, the town hall.
From its peculiar form it is known as the "Old Round Church."
The Church of the Restoration, Universalist, was organized by Rev.
S. C. HAYFORD in 1879, with a membership of seventeen. Their house of worship,
a neat wooden structure, capable of seating 250 persons, was built in 1880,
and is valued, including grounds, at $9,000. The original cost of building
was $7,000. The society now has eighteen members, though between thirty
and forty families contribute to the support of services. The present pastor,
Rev. Edward SMILEY, succeeded Mr. HAYFORD in the spring of 1884. The Sabbath-school
superintendent is Mrs. L. M. SMILEY, while the average attendance at Sabbath-school
is about sixty-five, the regular membership being ninety. The present officers
of the church are the prudential committee, which is composed of Henry
GILLETT, C. P. RHODES, and Wm. FREEMAN.
of Chittenden County, Vermont
and Biographical Sketches
of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers
By W. S. Rann, Syracuse, N. Y.
& Co., Publishers, 1886
by Karima Allison ~ 2004
section of Hamilton Child's "Gazetteer and Business Directory of
Chittenden County, Vt. For 1882-83."