NO. R-239. Senate concurrent resolution commemorating the 200th anniversary of Montpelier's designation as Vermont's state capital.
Offered by: Senator Doyle of Washington District, Senator Cummings of Washington District and Senator Scott of Washington District.
Whereas, after the adoption of the Vermont Constitution in 1777, the legislative and executive branches of Vermont state government, then consisting of the one-house legislature, the governor, and the governor’s council, rotated their periodic sessions around the state, sitting in Windsor, Rutland, Vergennes, Middlebury, Newbury, Burlington, Westminster, Danville and Woodstock, and
Whereas, by 1805, Vermont’s population had trebled from the 1790 census level to 200,000, commercial and industrial life in the state was becoming increasingly complex, and many citizens supported the establishment of a permanent state capital, and
Whereas, many of the larger municipalities in the state entered into an informal competition to be honored as the state capital, and
Whereas, the centrally located small town of Montpelier on the banks of the Winooski River, which lacked any special political clout in the legislature, sought consideration as a possible state capital site, and
Whereas, as an ultimately decisive incentive, the citizens of Montpelier pledged $8,000.00 toward the state capitol’s construction costs, and
Whereas, recognizing the state’s meager financial resources, the legislature embraced this generous offer and on November 8, 1805 enacted Chapter 54, “An act establishing the permanent Seat of the Legislature at Montpelier,” and
Whereas, this legislation established a three‑person committee comprising Elijah Paine, Ezra Butler and James Whitelaw “to fix upon a place in the town of Montpelier, for the erection of buildings for the accommodation of the Legislature,” and
Whereas, the act directed the completion of the new legislative buildings by September 1, 1808 and further provided reimbursement of costs incurred to the donors should the legislature cease holding its sessions in Montpelier, and
Whereas, the legislatively established deadline was fulfilled, and in 1808, the first Vermont State House, a three‑story wooden structure, was opened in Montpelier close to the current state capitol building’s location, and
Whereas, 2005 marks the 200th anniversary of the General Assembly’s designation of Montpelier as Vermont’s state capital, now therefore be it
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:
That the General Assembly commemorates the 200th anniversary of Montpelier’s designation as Vermont’s state capital, and be it further
Resolved: That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to Montpelier Mayor Mary Hooper at Montpelier City Hall.
The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street