Vermont is known for its spectacular scenery

November 28, 2012 8:16 am

Vermont
Vermont is known for its spectacular scenery. It is known especially for winding country roads, pretty villages nestled in hillsides, and covered wooden bridges. The state also has mountains, lakes, and streams.
Facts About Vermont
Capital
Montpelier
Population
621,000 people
Rank among states in population
49th
Major cities
Burlington, Essex, Rutland
Area
9,610 square miles
24,900 square kilometers
Rank among states in area
43rd
Statehood
March 4, 1791, the 14th state
State nickname
The Green Mountain State
Name for residents
Vermonters
State bird
Hermit Thrush
State flower
Red Clover
State tree
Sugar Maple
Abbreviation
VT
A POPULAR VACATION STATE
Forests cover much of Vermont. In the fall, visitors come to see the changing colors of the leaves. Vermont’s many maple trees offer especially brilliant colors.
Tourism is a major industry in Vermont. Tourists once came to the state mainly in summer. They now visit year-round. Fall offers colorful foliage. In winter, skiers flock to Vermont’s mountain slopes to enjoy their favorite sport. Spring is maple sugar time. Popular summer activities include hiking, bicycling, and water sports, such as canoeing, sailing, and swimming.
MAPLE SUGAR
March is when people in Vermont drill small holes in the trunks of maple trees. They put a spout in the hole and collect the sap that drips from the tree. Then they boil the sap and put it on their pancakes. Does this sound strange? It’s how maple syrup is made.
Maple syrup comes from sugar maple trees. Vermont produces more maple sugar and maple syrup than any other state. Vermont also makes maple candy from maple sugar. You can visit a sugarhouse and see how they make these products.
In early spring, Vermonters hold sugar-on-snow parties. To make this treat, they scoop packed snow into a bowl and drizzle hot maple syrup over it. Then they dig in. Yum!
THE GREEN MOUNTAIN STATE
The name Vermont comes from two French words: vert meaning “green” and mont meaning “mountain.” Vermont repeats its name in its nickname, the Green Mountain State.
The Green Mountains run the length of Vermont, from Massachusetts in the south to Canada in the north. They’re part of the Appalachians. Thick forests make the mountains green.
The Long Trail follows the crest of the Green Mountains. It’s a popular route for hikers. Lots of skiers come to resorts in the Green Mountains to ski.
Marble and granite are mined in Vermont’s mountains. Both stones are used as building materials. The state is known for the fine quality of its marble and granite. One of the world’s largest granite mines is in Barre, Vermont.
LAKE CHAMPLAIN
Lake Champlain lies along Vermont’s western border with the state of New York. The lake is located in a picturesque valley between the Green Mountains and the Adirondack Mountains. It’s Vermont’s largest lake. Many summer and winter resorts are on the shores of Lake Champlain.
Lake Champlain is named after the first European explorer to come to the area, Samuel de Champlain. Champlain explored the area in 1609 and claimed it for France.
THE GREEN MOUNTAIN BOYS
In colonial times, both France and Britain competed for the territory that is now Vermont. Britain finally won in 1763. Afterward, the English colonies of New York and New Hampshire competed for control of Vermont.
A group called the Green Mountain Boys formed to fight New York’s claims. Ethan Allen was leader of the Green Mountain Boys. You can visit his home in Burlington, Vermont.
When the American Revolution began in 1775, the Green Mountain Boys turned their attention to the war against Britain. They helped win important battles in the fight for American independence.
VERMONT’S INDEPENDENCE
Vermont declared its independence from Britain in 1777. It became an independent republic and drew up a constitution. The constitution outlawed slavery. It was the first constitution in America to do so. Vermont stayed independent through the 1780s.
THE 14TH STATE
Vermont was the first state admitted to the after the 13 former English colonies became states. It became the 14th state on March 4, 1791. Burlington is its largest city. Montpelier is its capital.
Vermont is one of the six New England states. It’s the only New England state without a seacoast. This may explain why Vermont has no large cities. Most big cities in the Eastern United States started as seaports. Montpelier, Vermont’s capital, has fewer than 9,000 people. It’s the smallest state capital in the United States.
Vermont ranks 49th among the states in population. Only Wyoming has fewer people. Vermont is also more rural than any other state in the United States. Most of its people live in the country.
DAIRY FARMING
Except in the Champlain Valley, Vermont has poor soil for growing crops. But grass thrives and provides good pastures for cows. Dairy farming is the state’s most important agricultural activity.
Vermont’s dairy farms produce lots of milk. Factories in the state use the milk to make cheese, especially cheddar cheese for which the state is noted. Milk also goes into ice cream. The Ben & Jerry’s ice cream factory is in Waterbury. The factory gives tours with ice cream samples at the end.
SHELBURNE MUSEUM
The Shelburne Museum is in the town of Shelburne near Lake Champlain. It’s a great place to learn about American life in the 1800s. You can tour a lighthouse, a circus building, a toy shop from 1835, a general store from 1840, an old locomotive, a steamboat, and many other attractions.
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