This is a series of articles I’ve been meaning to write ever since the TOS Exodus. STEVE SMITH’s plea[1] for content a little while ago inspired me to get off my ass[2] and actually write something down.

I live in the State of Vermont and I like it. This may seem like a strange thing for a Glib but like most things The Narrative doesn’t tell the whole story. Part two of this series will explain Vermont’s social and political situation as I understand it. This part explains why the state exists at all.

Vermont is bounded on the north by the Canadian province of Quebec[3], on the south by the northern border of Massachusetts, on the east by the Connecticut River, and on the northwestern two-thirds by long skinny Lake Champlain[4]. Across the Connecticut River to the east is New Hampshire and across Lake Champlain to the west is New York. The state is bisected by the Green Mountain range running north-south creating distinct east and west sides.

Map courtesy of

The lake and river form natural barriers to east-west travel which is why the area was a bit of a no-man’s land[5] during the late Colonial Era.

I’ve always wanted to be able to write that “Vermont was created by the greed of two men.” but while Bennington Wentworth served as Colonial Governor of the British Province of New Hampshire during the land grant period of 1749 to 1764 the position of Colonial Governor of the British Province of New York changed hands eight times.

Governor Wentworth was the first to enrich himself by selling land grants to New Hampshire entrepreneurs. The various New York governors soon got into the act. Since both provinces claimed the entire area the governors tried to mark their territory. The initial New Hampshire grants were on the west side next to New York[6] and the New York grants were on the east side next to New Hampshire.

This made it easy for nearby provincial officials to harass both sets of settlers, pissing off all of them, giving them a reason to feel cohesive, and giving rise to Ethan Allen and his merry band of Green Mountain Boys who harassed the officials back. The provinces presented their cases to the government of King George III which ruled in favor of New York[7] but by then the Revolutionary War had shifted the provinces’ attentions away from the unruly area which emerged as the independent Republic of Vermont in 1777[8].

Vermont never wanted to be independent. The plan was always to become a state but the new State of New York blocked Vermont’s admission until a $30K “settlement” was paid. Vermont became the 14th state in 1791.

It didn’t have to happen. If the provincial governors’ land grants had started at their respective borders and moved inwards then New York and New Hampshire would now share a border at the natural barrier of the Green Mountain range.[9]


[1] Actually a polite reminder that: No content means no web site. No web site means no forum for Cascadia Independence advocacy. No forum means one unhappy Cascadia Independence advocate. AND BY “UNHAPPY” MEAN…

[2] Lest STEVE SMITH find something other to do with my ass.

[3] It was supposed to be the 45 degree north latitude line and it is more or less. The border is actually a little above 45 degrees and zigs-zags in spots. Legend has it that a gang of drunken Scotsmen[10] was hired to survey it. As an amateur surveyor of the old school[11] I blame the surprising amount of iron in the border mountains which I can personally attest draws off compass needles.

[4] Proud home of SEA SMITH’s distant cousin Champ the Lake Monster.

[5] By British colonials that is. Indians and the French don’t count.

[6] Like the town of (Governor Wentworth) Bennington which is one town north of Vermont’s southwest corner town Pownal.

[7] Despite New York’s win in court most of Vermont’s towns are based on the New Hampshire grants which is why so many are six mile square quadrilaterals.

[8] At the Shrine of the Alamo in San Antonio there’s a sign saying that Texas is the only state to have been an independent republic before admission to the United States. This is clearly wrong because Vermont was an independent republic before Texas was even discovered.

[9] And Bernie Sanders wouldn’t be a senator.

[10] But I repeat myself.

[11] You kids and your modern GPS receivers.