lies in the eastern part of the county, in lat. 44º 45', and long.
4º 49', bounded northeasterly by Brownington, southeasterly by Westmore
and Sutton, southwesterly by Sheffield and Glover, and northwesterly by
Irasburgh. The township contains an area of a little over thirty-six square
miles, which was granted October 20, 1781, to William Barton and his associates,
Colton Gilson, John Murray, Ira Allen, Daniel Owen, Elkanah Watson, Charles
Handy, Henry Rice, Peter Phillips, William Griswold, Benjamin Gorton, Joseph
Whitmarsh, Elisha Bartlet, Richard Steer, Enoch Sprague, John Holbrook,
Benjamin Handy, John Mumford, Benjamin Bowen, Michael Holbrook, Asa Kimball,
Ephraim Bowen, Jr., Joseph Gorton, Elijah Bean, Joshua Belven, David Barton,
John Paul Jones, Elijah Gore, and John Gorton, reserving the usual five
shares for public purposes. Its charter, however, was not issued until
October 20, 1789.
Most of these grantees, except Ira Allen, were residents of Providence,
R.I., and it is claimed that the grantees had drafted their petition for
a township by the name of Providence, but that Col. Barton, anxious to
immortalize his name, carefully scratched out the word Providence and inserted
his own name Barton. This version is only traditionary, however, and it
is more than probable it is incorrect. William Barton was a brave officer
in the Continental army, one of the principal grantees of the town, and
by no means unpopular with his associates, who, in all probability, were
knowing to and not opposed to the new township being named in his honor.
Though somewhat uneven, the territory has no prominent elevations
except in the central and eastern parts. Barton mountain, in the central
part, is quite prominent, and affords an excellent view of the surrounding
beautiful scenery. Barton river forms the principal water-course
It has its source in this town, one of its branches, Roaring branch, heading
in the fountains of Runaway pond, in Glover, flowing northerly into Barton;
the other rises in May pond, and after passing through Crystal lake unites
with the stream from Glover. Their united waters then take a northerly
direction, and, just before they reach the northerly line of Barton, receive
Willoughby river, a considerable stream, having its source in Westmore.
From Barton, Barton river continues a northerly course, passing through
the northeast corner of Irasburgh, and eastern part of Coventry, into Lake
Memphremagog, watering about 160 square miles of territory. Runaway pond,
in Glover, which broke its northern bound and run entirely out June 6,1810,
passed down this river, making very destructive ravages, the traces of
which are still to be seen. Several other minor streams are found throughout
the township, which unite in enriching the soil, adding to the scenic beauty
of the territory, and furnishing motive power for mills and factories.
Crystal lake, formerly called Belle Lac by the French, is a beautiful little
sheet of water, about two and one-half miles in length by a half mile in
width, situated in the southern part of the town. Fuller pond, in the eastern
part, covers an area of about one hundred acres. May pond is a small sheet
of water in the eastern part of the town, lying partly in Westmore.
The soil is very fertile and well adapted to the growth of all
kinds, of grain, while the pasture land upon the hill slopes is excellent.
The timber is hemlock, spruce, beech, birch, maple, etc. Large quantities
of sugar is manufactured from the maple, for which the township is somewhat
noted. The principal rock is calciferous mica schist. About two miles from
the Irasburgh line, and parallel with it, there extends a narrow vein of
hornblende schist the whole length of the town. The whole of the extreme
eastern corner, covering an area of several square miles, the rocks are
a mixture of granite, syenite, and protogine. No ore discoveries of importance
have been made. Iron has been found in small quantities, and some traces
The only important work of internal improvement is the C.& P.R.
& M.V.R.R., which extends through the town from south to north, with
stations at South Barton, Barton, and Barton Landing. This road affords
a very convenient mode of ingress and egress to the town, and an excellent
medium for the transportation of imports and exports.
In 1880, Barton had a population of 2,366, and in 1882, was divided
into ten school districts and contained fourteen common schools, employing
three male and twenty female teachers, to whom was paid an aggregate salary
of $2,688.52. There were 482 pupils attending common school, while the
entire cost of the schools for the year, ending October 31st, was $2,988.67,
with A. M. Wheeler, superintendent.
Barton, an incorporated village, is beautifully located at, the
outlet of Crystal Lake, a little south of the central part of the town.
The village is nicely laid out, contains some fine residences, has an excellent
water-power, is a station on the C.& P.R. & M.V.R.R., and altogether
is a charming and very flourishing little town, one of the most important
in the county. It has three churches, (Congregational, Methodist Episcopal,
and Roman Catholic,) a union graded school, a weekly newspaper, four general
merchandise stores, two clothing stores, several groceries, an extensive
carriage manufactory, a chair-stock mill, sash, door and blind factory,
etc,, and a population of about one thousand.
Barton Landing, located in the northern part of the town, on Barton
river, is also an incorporated village and station on the C.& P.R.
& M.V.R.R. It has two churches (MethodistEpiscopal and Congregational),
a graded school, hotel, three dry goods stores, two clothing stores, two
groceries, one hardware and two drug and two millinery stores, two blacksmith
shops, two paint shops, two carriage shops, one shoe shop, one marble factory,
two harness shops, a grist-mill, two saw and planing-mills, etc.,
and about 400 inhabitants.
On the night of July 18, 1876, the village was visited by a disastrous
fire, originating in the store of Flint Bros. & Co., dealers in hardware,
whence it rapidly spread to Austin's building, adjoining, and thence to
the dwellings of D.S.Stafford and H.D.Bigelow. All of these buildings were
destroyed, entailing a loss of about $25,000.00. During that season O.H.
Austin purchased the ground and erected a large business block on the site
occupied by the burned buildings. On the 12th of February 1878,
another fire broke out, destroying this new building. Within a few weeks,
however, Mr. Austin began to build the third time, and now has an excellent
South Barton, a post village and railroad station located in the
southeastern part of the town, contains one store, one blacksmith shop,
two saw-mills, and about a dozen dwellings.
Barton National Bank, located at Barton village, was chartered July
30, 1875, with a capital of $150,000.00 and with the privilege of increasing
the sum to $300,000.00. The officers are Hiram McLellan, of Glover, president;
Emory Davison, of Craftsbury, vice-president; and H.R. Dewey, cashier.
Barton Foundry and Machine Shops, located on Water street, were
built by the present proprietor, John W. Murkland, in 1874, who now employs
ten men in the manufacture of plows, sugar arches, stoves, all kinds of
mill machinery and in general custom work.
G. A. Drew's sash, door and blind factory, located at Barton village,
was established by Mr. Drew about 1875. He employs three men and turns
out about $10,000.00 worth of manufactured goods per annum.
The Walter Hawyard Chair Co.’s located at Barton village, were erected
in 1859. Chair-stock in the rough is here manufactured and shipped to Pittsburgh,
Mass., where it is finished for use. About 3,000,000 feet of hard and soft
wood lumber is used annually, from which $100,000.00 worth of goods are
manufactured, giving employment to one hundred persons.
Charles J. Ufford's carriage manufactory, located on Water street,
at Barton village, is one of the largest in the State. Mr. Ufford has been
established in the business about, fifteen years, and now manufactures
annually about 16o wagons and carriages and thirty sleighs, representing
an aggregate value of $20,000.00. The repository for finished work; is
locate on Park street. The works give employment to eighteen men.
Oscar F. Rice's carriage manufactory, located at Barton Landing,
was built in 1867, by John M. Hammond, and was purchased by Mr. Rice in
December, 1869. He does a business of about $20,000.00 per year, employing
Chandler, French & Co.'s box factory and lumber dressing mill,
located at Barton Landing, was established in 1874. The firm now employs
twenty men and does a business of about $75,000.00 per annum.
L. M. Chander's saw-mill, at Barton Landing, cut 800,000 feet of
lumber per annum.
Johnson & Allen's marble works, located on Main street, at Barton
Landing, were established by Curtis Johnson, in 1871, who, continued the
business till 1875, when his son, William C., took the business and conducted
it alone till 1882, when he took in Charles K. Allen, They manufacture
mouments and headstones from marble and granite.
The Orleans Grist and Flouring Mills, C. S. Skinner, proprietor,
located at Barton Landing, were established about thirty-eight years ago.
The mills are supplied with four runs of stones and do a large and successful
C. E. Buswell's steam saw-mill, located just over the line in Westmore,
has the capacity for manufacturing 10,000 feet of lumber and 10,000 shingles
per day. Mr. Buswell employs twenty-five hands and turns out 2,000,000
feet of lumber and about the same number of shingles per year.
A. O. Blake's saw and grist-mills, are located at South Barton.
The saw-mills manufacture 500,000 feet of common lumber and 50,000 feet
of clapboards per annum. The grist-mill has two runs of stones. Mr. Blake
employs fifteen hands.
The proprietors of Barton took prompt measures toward allotting
and settling the town. On the day following the issue of the charter, October
21, 1789, they applied to Luke Knowlton, of Westminster, a justice of the
peace—who issued his warrant, warning a meeting of the proprietors at the
home of Charles Evans in Brattleboro, on the 2d Tuesday of February, for
choosing officers, etc. The meeting assembled in pursuance of this warning,
when Daniel Cahoon, of Lyndon, was chosen clerk. Colonel William Barton,
William Chamberlin, and Elder Philemon Hines were chosen a committee to
allot such township, and a tax of L1, 13s on each proprietor's share was
voted to defray expenses of the same. General William Chamberlin made a
survey and plan of the township which was accepted by the proprietors October
18, 1791. Soon after this a party of four or five Rhode Island men
came to Barton on foot, from Lyndon, and among other things brought a few
potatoes. They encamped on the south side of the outlet of Crystal Lake,
about ten rods from the head of the falls, where they chopped down the
trees and partly cleared a small parcel of land, and planted their potatoes.
This was the first clearing made in the town. In 1794, Colonel Barton came
on and cleared three or four acres of land on lot No. 5 in the seventh
range, on a ridge of land westerly from the old road, and extending to
the top of the hill easterly from the present road. He also
cut the timber from ten or fifteen acres more on the side hill toward the
northeasterly corner of the lot. On the ridge at the easterly side of the
old road he built a frail log house, without floor or chimney and containing
but one room. During the same season Asa Kimball, from Nepucket,
R.I., cleared a few acres on lot No. 5 in the sixth range and also slashed
four acres on lot No. 5 in the fifth range. During the summer of 1795,
Colonel Barton raised thirty or forty bushels of wheat on the land cleared
by him the year previous, and Mr. Kimball raised about fifty bushels on
his land. This was the first grain raised in the town.
The town was organized and the first town meeting held March 28,
1798 when Asa Kimball was chosen moderator; Abner Allyn, Jr., town clerk;
Jonathan Allyn, Asa Kimball, and Jonathan Robinson, selectmen; David Pillsbury,
treasurer; James Redmond, constable; David Pillsbury, scaler of leather;
Asa Kimball, poundkeeper; Oliver Blodget, grand juror; Samuel Nichols,
hayward; Oliver Blodget, tythingman; James May and David Pillsbury, surveyors
of highways and fence viewers; Jeremiah Abbot, hog-reeve; and Jonathan
Allyn, sealer of weights and measures. The voters in the town at this time
were David Abbot, Jonathan Allyn, Abner Allyn, John Beard, James Beard,
Oliver Blodget, John Ames, Asa Kimball, Samuel Lord, James May , Samuel
Nichols, David Pillsbury, John Palmer, James Redmond, Jonathan Robinson,
Peter Taylor, Solomon Wadham, and Daniel Young.
The first, justice of the peace was Jonathan Allyn, in 1797, who
retained the position twenty-four years. He was also the first representative,
in 1802. The first saw-mill was built by William Barton, in the summer
of 1796, near where the railroad crosses the river at the Mansfield farm.
The first grist-mill was built by Asa Kimball, in 1797, on the site now
occupied by the chair-stock factory. He also built a saw-mill, in 1798,
where the grist-mill now is. The first child born in the town was Amelia
May, October 3, 1796, a daughter of James and Elizabeth May. The first
male child was George Abbot, born June 3, 1797, and died the 20th of the
following month. The first adult person to die in the town was Paul Blount,
a farm hand in the service of David Pillsbury, in September, 1798. The
first barn was built by Daniel Pillsbury. The raisers came from Lyndon,
finished the raising in the morning and returned to Lyndon for breakfast.
The first church was built by the Congregationalists in 1820, about one
mile north of Barton village. Lemuel Sturtevant was the first
merchant, in 1801, though he continued in business but a short time.
Col. Bangs and Capt. Bigelow opened a store in 1805, Samuel Works in 1806,
and Abisha Goodel in 1809. Ellis Cobb built a fulling-mill for dressing
cloth in 1803. Joseph Owen established a distillery for manufacturing whiskey
in 1804. The first physician was Elihu Lee, in 1802. The first
lawyer in the town was Asa King, in 1811, The first religious meeting
was held at the dwelling of Asa Kimball, in 1803, by Phineas Peck, a Methodist
of Lamoille and Orleans Counties, VT.; 1883-1884,
Published by Hamilton Child; May 1887,
was provided by Tom Dunn.
Vermont - US Census 1850
Vermont - US Census 1860
Listings from the St. Paul’s Cemetery in Barton,
Listings from the North Cemetery in Barton, Vermont
Listings from the South Cemetery in Barton, Vermont
Listings from the Welcome O'Brown Cemetery, Barton, Vermont
Listings from the Heath Cemetery in Barton, Vermont
Congregational Church ~ 1817 - 1909 list of Pastors, Deacons & Parishioners
notices (1975 - 1986) from the Barton Chronicle Newspaper
Directory from the 1967 Orleans High School Annual
- Orleans, Vermont
issue listing past and present students from the Barton Academy -