Vermont State Capitol

Completed: 1859
Thomas Silloway
Stock Photo

Vermont's second State House, designed by Ammi Young, was completed in 1838 at a cost of $132,000. With a front portico modeled after the temple of Theseus in Greece, this classically-inspired building displayed a low saucer-shaped Roman dome and was the perfect embodiment of the chaste principles that typified the Greek Revival fashion then sweeping the country. Built on an elevated site blasted out of the hillside, the State House enjoyed a grand approach. On a cold night in January, 1857, a fire, caused by the wood-burning heating system, destroyed nearly everything within the granite walls. Ultimately the walls themselves would come down, leaving only the Grecian portico to be incorporated into the design of the third State House.

The third and present State House was built on the same site as the second. Its basic plan is similar to Young's, but it was built on a larger scale with a distinctly different ornamental scheme reflecting the Renaissance Revival style popular at the time. This State House was constructed over a two and a half year period, cost $150,000, and was dedicated in 1859. Additions in the rear date from 1888, 1900, and 1987.


ORIGIN OF STATE NAME: Based on "verts monts," French for green mountains


STATE MOTTO: Freedom and unity

1777 PREAMBLE: Whereas all government ought to enable the individuals who compose it to enjoy their natural rights, and other blessings which the Author of Existence has bestowed on man.

ADDERESS:  115 State St, Montpelier, VT 05633

Vermont State House
Photo: Ferdie Deering 1969