Vermont Counties
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Vermont Counties

There are fourteen counties in Vermont. Each county has a county seat, known in Vermont as shire town. In 1777, Vermont had two counties. The western side of the state was called Bennington County and the eastern was called Cumberland County. In 1781 Cumberland County was broken up into three counties in Vermont, plus Washington County, which eventually became part of New Hampshire. Today's Washington County was known as Jefferson County until 1814. Essex County, Orleans County, and Caledonia County are commonly referred to as the Northeast Kingdom.

Windham County, Vermont

Windham County Education, Geography, and History

Windham County, Vermont Courthouse

Windham County is a county located in the state of Vermont. As of the 2000 census, the population was 44,513. Established: February 22, 1779.
The shire town (county seat) is Newfane, and its largest town is Brattleboro.

Etymology - Origin of Windham County Name

For Windham, Connecticut. Windham is a town in Windham County, Connecticut, United States. It contains the city of Willimantic and the villages of Windham Center, North Windham, and South Windham. The city of Willimantic was consolidated with the town in 1983.


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Windham County History

Fort Bridgman, Vernon, was burned in 1755, a casualty of the French and Indian War. The Court of Common Pleas (established 1768) of the County of Cumberland (established July 3, 1766) of the Province of New York was moved to the town of Westminster in 1772. On July 4, 1776 the Province of New York became an independent state.

On January 15, 1777 Vermont declared its independence from New York, and functioned as an independent republic until statehood in 1791. Cumberland County (N.Y.) and Gloucester County (N.Y.) were extinguished when Vermont declared its independence from New York; Albany County (N.Y.) and Charlotte County (now Washington County, N.Y.) were eliminated from Vermont.

Unity County was formed March 17, 1778, the eastern of the two original Vermont Republic counties. Unity County was renamed Cumberland County on March 21, 1778. Cumberland County and Bennington County (the eastern original county) exchanged land, adjusting their early border. On February 16, 1781 Rutland County was created from Bennington County, and Orange, Windham and Windsor Counties were created from Cumberland County. Some authors assume Cumberland County was renamed Windham County in 1781. Yet there are several original sources that indicate Cumberland County was dissolved rather than renamed. This was probably to make a clean legal break from any connection with Cumberland County, New York, as some authors indicate the Cumberland County, Vermont Republic, records remained in Windham County. Newfane became the Shire Town of Windham County before 1812.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 798 square miles (2,067 km2), of which, 789 square miles (2,043 km2) of it is land and 9 square miles (24 km2) of it (1.18%) is water.

The surface of the county is much broken by hills and valleys; the western part is very elevated, and contains a part of the Green Mountain range. The geological character of the county is primitive. Immense quantities of granite is found in all parts of the county, both in quarries and boulders, most of which is of fine grain and very handsome. It also contains gneiss, hornblonde, serpentine, primitive limestone, and mica, talcose, chlorite, and argellite slates.

The soil of the county is various; from the rich and alluvial meadows on the Connecticut, to the cold and rugged lands on the sides of the mountains. The general character of the soil may be considered as tolerable for grain, and excellent for grazing.

Windham County is finely watered by Williams', Saxton's, and West Rivers, with their branches, and by numerous other streams. These waters give the county a great hydraulic power, which is rapidly coming into use for manufacturing purposes.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Windsor County, Vermont - north
  • Sullivan County, New Hampshire - northeast
  • Cheshire County, New Hampshire - east
  • Franklin County, Massachusetts - south
  • Bennington County, Vermont - west


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