The tallest man-made structure in the state of Vermont at 306 feet (93 m) high, the limestone obelisk BENNINGTON BATTLE MONUMENT pays tribute to the Green Mountain Boys and commemorates the Battle of Bennington during the Revolutionary War (August 17, 1777). The Monument's cornerstone was laid in 1887 and completed in November 1889.
The Observatory - at the 200 feet Level - is only reached by elevator as the stairs are closed,
The Monument is located in the center of Old Bennington just off Route 9 West. Actually you can see it for miles. A small admission is charged.
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
One of the first things we did when we stopped in Bennington, was to visit the BENNINGTON VISITOR CENTER. Got lots of brochures and information about the area. I also asked the young lady about our route plan for Vermont. She had a great other opinion on what way to take to northern Vermont. She had us going north on 7a, check out the 3 covered bridges and continue on the #100 and stop at the Vermont Country Store and then make our way up to St. Johnsbury.
Somehow we missed the 7a and got on the #7 North which is a big highway and we just couldn't find a way to turn around. So unfortunately I missed the three covered bridges. Sigh!
The center may also help you find accommodations or book a restaurant reservation
Open year round
Monday to Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Saturday 10:00 a.m.to 4:00 p.m.
The Park-McCullough House, a thirty-five room Victorian Mansion, was completed in 1865 for Trenor and Laura Park. Trenor Park, a Bennington lawyer, had made a fortune in California successfully managing John C. Fremont's Mariposa gold mines. Returning East, he commissioned architects Diaper and Dudley to design this "summer home," a classic example of French Second Empire Style.
In 1891 President Benjamin Harrison stayed overnight in the house during his visit to dedicate the Bennington Battle Monument. 1891 was also the 100th anniversary of Vermont in the U.S. Confederation.
The story of the Park and McCullough families is quite fascinating. Click on the website link to learn more about them.
Robert Frost's home in the 1920s, where he wrote "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening", on a hot June morning. The small museum features educational exhibits on the poet's personal and literary history and the woodcuts of Frost's illustrator, J.J. Lankes. The dining room, where "Stopping by Woods" was written, is totally devoted to the poem. The property is highly evocative of Frost's poetry with birch trees, stone walls, fields and woods and some of his original apple trees. A few of Frost's books, tapes and posters were for sale.
We started at the Covered bridge museum & followed a map through three covered bridges nearby. We passed through 3/5 Bennington County single lane, Town Lattice type of covered bridges. These bridges were covered to keep the wood dry and thereby avoid rot. This became the trend in 1805 when a bridge designed by Timothy Palmer, an architect proved most durable. Most covered bridges are painted red because iron ochre was an inexpensive pigment.
Located just off Route 67A we turned left on Murphy Road. This bridge received its name from Elnathan Henry who bought the land from James Breckenridge and constructed the Henry House in 1769. The Henry House operates today as a Bed & Breakfast Inn and is located directly across from the bridge. The Henry Bridge spans the Wallomsac River. The original bridge was constructed in 1840. In 1989 a complete restructuring was done by Blow and Cote, Inc.
Dimensions: 117 feet long, 11.8 feet wide, 8.7 feet high
The Silk Road Covered Bridge is located just across from the entrance of Bennington College on Route 67A. This bridge spans the Wallomsac River and was built about 1840 probably by Benjamin Sears. The original name for this bridge was the Locust Grove Bridge. Dimensions: 88 feet long, 14.25 feet wide, 10 feet high at truss, 11.9 feet high at center.
The Paper Mill Village Bridge was .5 west on Rt. 67A and was originally named for a 1790 paper mill that was one of the state's first. The area was boarded up around the mill and falls. Dimensions: 125.5 feet long. 14.25 feet wide. 8.67 feet high at truss. 11.17 feet high at cente
This monument is a dedication to the famous Battle of Bennington that took place during the Revolutionary war in 1777. It was at this location the American colonists maintained a store of weapons and food, which British General Burgoyne knew was critical to capture in order to restock his own troops.
The Bridges we saw were the Henry Bridge and the Paper Mill Bridge. Both span the Walloomsac River. They had similar designs and were painted red. Apparently most covered bridges in this area were painted red since the pigment was inexpensive in the time of the original construction. These two particular bridges had been reconstructed. You can drive over them (one car at a time). You can even walk over them and check out the structure up close.
There are five well restored covered bridges in the Greater Bennington area. They're very interesting to see and to drive through.
You can find out where they are by picking up a copy of a local tourist booklet.
There are three covered bridges (maybe more, but we found three) in town. Here are some photos of them.
The oldest church in Vermont, built in 1805. The adjacent cemetery dates from Bennington's earliest days and contains the graves of Robert Frost and Revolutionary figures