ⓘ Peacham, Vermont


ⓘ Peacham, Vermont

In 1763, Governor Benning Wentworth of New Hampshire gave a charter for the region to a group of proprietors, and the town was given the name Peacham the etymology of the name is unclear. The original proprietors were speculators who surveyed the town, laid a few rudimentary roads, and divided it into lots, though the territory remained unsettled for some time.

In 1775, settlers, primarily from Connecticut and Massachusetts, bought land and built homes, developing the land for agriculture. The first settlers to the present day preserved almost completely for subsistence farming despite the long winters, hilly terrain and rocky soil. Nine years later, records show a population of about 200 people. The first recorded meeting was held in 1784, and the magistrate was duly elected to manage the Affairs of the city. Peacham was early on presented with a choice of one or the County court or school district, and residents voted in favor of the school. In 1795 the Caledonia County grammar school adopted its Charter and the first school was established in the structure of the magazine on the Bailey Hazen road, halfway between the corner and South Peacham Peacham.

In 1799, the library was created, which traveled from store to store. The collegiate Church was founded in 1794 – the first pastor, Leonard Worcester, was well known for his fiery sermons. His son Samuel continued to be an important missionary to the Cherokee people, creating the first typeface for the Cherokee alphabet and gaining lasting fame as the plaintiff in the Supreme court case of Worcester against Georgia.

Early residents, who came to be known as Peachamites, traded butter, eggs, and wheat for goods which they could not do at home and also relied on the production and sale of goods such as whiskey and potash to help augment the relatively poor harvests. Almost from the beginning, the various professions and industries - as many as 30-35 at a given time - flourished. Timber cutting, harvest, milling, oil, metal products, leather and leather goods for local consumption. From 1800 to 1830, sheep farming flourished as more profitable than growing crops. In 1840, the town reached its greatest population in 1443. From this date, the figures of the census has steadily declined. The methods of farming change, and dairy farming replaced sheep. Larger and more industrialized farms of the late 19th century could not support large families, and young people began to get out of the house.

In the 20th century, the population continued to decline to a minimum in the mid-600S do not. In addition, agriculture has become less common because of competition with large dairy farms in the West, and many farms either merged or went under. Tourism became important in the 20th century as people opened their homes to tourists from cities of the Atlantic coast, often derisively called "flatland". With the arrival of the railroad in Barnet and then motor vehicles, Peacham became a popular location for summer residents, some of whom were teachers from Boston and new York. In the second half of the 20th century Peacham became a popular vacation spot and retirement home for prominent intellectuals and liberal thinkers – people such as David Dellinger, William Lederer, Roman Jakobson, and the historian Shepard Clough all owned houses in town. Their interest and stimulation enhanced the cultural interests of the city.