Vermont Railroad Timeline

1831-1843 • 1843  1846-18511852-18631860-18681870-18751877-18861888-1894

Even thirty years after the Bolton Riot workers' wages were cut with little or no notice.1846 The Bolton Riot, a work stoppage by Irish laborers at Bolton Flats, north of Waterbury, erupts during the construction of the Vermont Central line. The workers had not been paid in nearly three months.

1847 Construction begins on the Rutland & Burlington Railroad, formerly known as the Champlain and Connecticut River Railroad.

1849 December 18—The Rutland & Burlington Railroad is completed from Bellows Falls via Rutland to Burlington. At its highest point, Mount Holly, water from Lake Champlain and Boston Harbor are mixed together, symbolizing the connection between the Atlantic Ocean and Lake Champlain.

Downtown Northfield showing rail yards, station, hotel, c. 1850-1860.

1849 December—The Vermont Central Railroad is completed from Windsor on the Connecticut River via Northfield to Burlington. The line bypasses the capital, Montpelier, in favor of Northfield, the hometown of the company president, Charles Paine.

1850 November 23—The Connecticut & Passumpsic River Railroad is completed to St. Johnsbury from White River Junction. The railroad provides a rapid, year-round connection to eastern markets for the Fairbanks Scale Company.

1851 June—Jonas Wilder, a railroad manager on the Vermont Central, suggests to the superintendent at Rouses Point that railroad cars be refrigerated so butter can be shipped to Boston. The first car carries eight tons of butter and eventually three or four shipments are scheduled per week.

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