Art & Culture

Vermont History

Seen from above, an old mansion with farmlands spread around it in the summer.

Explore Vermont History

With evidence of Indigenous people living on this land extending as far back as 13,000 years, Vermont’s history is rich, shown in Abenaki encampments, centuries-old churches and synagogues, agricultural farmsteads, downtowns with ornate architecture, covered bridges, and enduring swaths of forest rich with life. Historic sites with lots to offer for visitors commemorate two U.S. presidents born in Vermont, one on the Fourth of July, as well as Vermont’s role in the American Revolution in Bennington. Discover Black Vermonters’ stories and the history of Vermont’s stone quarrying industry along heritage trails.  

A historic site on a field with a lake and a bridge behind.
People dressed as Revolutionary War soldiers outside reenact history for a crowd.

Vermont’s Historic Sites

Vermont’s historic sites take visitors through the history of life in Vermont, from Indigenous history to early settlement to the state’s role in the Revolutionary War. Explore the homesteads of notable figures who’ve called the Green Mountains home, including U.S. Presidents Chester A. Arthur and Calvin Coolidge. Events at historic sites bring the past to life in engaging reenactments and hands-on exhibits.  

A covered bridge in the countryside as the sun sets with mountains visible behind.
A sign on a covered bridge dating it to 1875 and instructing riders to keep horses at a walk.

Covered Bridges

There are 100 covered bridges in Vermont, the majority of which are still in use. Covered bridges in Vermont date from 1820, with most constructed during the mid- and late 19th century. A scenic drive is a great opportunity to drive through as many as you can. Many bridges have nearby historic markers sharing their history, along with other relics of their construction time, such as signs instructing riders to keep horses at a walk. Vermont’s covered bridges used to be known as “kissing bridges” due to the moments of privacy they afforded courting couples riding through in a horse-drawn carriage.  

A restored steamship outdoors in the summer.

Vermont’s Museums

Vermont’s historic museums offer visitors an immersive trip into the Green Mountain State’s stories dating back to Indigenous history, when the Abenaki called this land “ndakinna,” meaning “our land.” Museums ranging from entire preserved buildings on acres of land to a Victorian collection of curiosities with a public planetarium beckon travelers of all ages with lots to discover.  

Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum

Vermont’s ski culture is world-renowned along with its epic terrain, and the built-in spirit of pioneering and innovation is part of why. The Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum stewards this history and showcases its stories.  

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A marker by the side of the road in winter tells the story of Wilson Snowflake Bentley.
A historic roadside marker sign commemorating marriage equality for same-sex couples in front of the golden dome of the Vermont Statehouse.

Roadside Markers

Vermont’s 315 roadside markers, visible statewide, tell the stories of famous Vermonters, iconic places, and historic events. Pull over when you see a green sign to read about battles that happened on Vermont soil, the first person ever to photograph a snowflake, and stories that illuminate the buildings you pass  

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Vermont Historical Society

The Vermont Historical Society stewards and studies Vermont’s history, as well as operating the Vermont History Museum in Montpelier, open to the public.  

Learn More about Vermont Historical Society