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sion in Craf tsbury in which Elligo Pond is situated, are
other evidences of the work of glacial torrents. Many
of the small lakes and ponds of Vermont are of glacial
origin.

By the plowing and grinding of the glaciers, by the
subsequent melting of the vast masses of ice, and by the
decay of the unhar vested vegetation of thousands of
years, a soil of unusual thickness and fertility was de-
posited over the greater part of Vermont.

The Champlain valley between the Adirondack and
Green Mountain ranges was formed ages before the
glacial epoch. It was always long and narrow, but
varied in size. At times it is believed there was a con-
tinuous waterway between the Gulf of St. Lawrence and
New York Bay.

Sometimes the waters of Lake Champlain were salt
and sometimes they were fresh. At times the current
flowed north, and again it flowed south. Before the



*Gulf, as used in this sense, means a gulch.



10 HISTORY OF VERMONT

glacial period this lake was so narrow that it resembled
a river more than a lake, and the stream which drained
into the Hudson valley wore the deep channel, resemb-
ling a canyon in its deepest parts, that now exists near
the New York shore.

The Grand Isle county islands at one time probably
constituted a single land body and were raised out of an
ancient sea before the Green Mountains were completed,
and were divided later by erosion. Probably all the
bays of Lake Champlain are of glacial origin.

After the great ice sheet of the glacial epoch had
melted, the land was depressed and Lake Champlain
became an arm of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Probably
this arm of the sea did not extend south of the present
location of Ticonderoga, an uprising of the land between
the present sites of Whitehall and Troy having broken
the connection with the Hudson River. The skeleton
of a whale found near Charlotte, Vt., is a reminder of
the time when Lake Champlain was connected with the
Atlantic Ocean. This whale is said to have been similar
to the small white whale now found in the waters of the
Gulf of St. Lawrence.

When glacial Lake Champlain was largest, its tribu-
taries flowed at a higher altitude than that which they
now occupy. The Winooski River entered the lake near
the present location of Richmond and in time formed a
large delta. The Lamoille River created a wide delta
about Milton, northern Colchester and southern Georgia,
and entered the lake farther north than its present
mouth.

Glacial Lake Memphremagog probably exceeded by a



THE MAKING OF THE MOUNTAINS 11

considerable extent its present bounds. Doctor Hitch-
cock thinks that at one time the waters of Lake Mem-
phremagog were discharged through the depression in
which Elligo Pond is now located, into the Lamoille
River ; that the Lamoille found an outlet through Stowe
Strait into the Winooski River, while the latter stream
may have been discharged through Williamstown gap
into the White and Connecticut Rivers.

The three most important of Vermont's valuable stone
products are marble, granite and slate; and the oldest
of these rocks is slate, which belongs partly in the Cam-
brian and partly in the Ordovician period. In quiet,
deep water a fine sediment accumulated in beds of mud
and clay. This hardened into shale with layers approxi-
mately horizontal.

As a result of change in the level of the sea bottom,
and the superimposing of other material like limestone
upon the slate, strong pressure was brought to bear
upon it, heat and moisture being present. Thus slate
was formed. There are four slate areas in Ver-
mont, two of them being east and two west of the Green
Mountains.

Most, if not all, of the Vermont marbles — and there
are at least one hundred different varieties — belong to
the Ordovician period and to the subdivision called
Chazy. Marble has been defined as a rock consisting
mainly of crystalline particles of calcite, dolomite, or
both. White calcite marble is composed almost entirely
of carbonate of lime; white dolomite marble is formed
almost wholly of carbonate of magnesia. True marble
has been defined as metamorphosed limestone and lime-



12 HISTORY OF VERMONT

stone is formed from a deposit of calcium carbonate,
either as a result of the accumulation of vast numbers
of marine shells or the chemical precipitation from vege-
table growth. There was much submergence and eleva-
tion during the laying down of the marble deposits. As
a result of powerful contractions of the earth's crust,
at the close of the Ordovician period the sediments be-
came crystalline and were intensely folded. The calcite
marbles of western Vermont are regarded as limestones
of marine and mostly of organic origin, which have
been metamorphosed under great pressure.

Overlying the marble deposits of western Vermont
is a great mass of schist, a rough, slaty rock. These
schists were formed from clay deposits, brought down
to the sea by rivers flowing over granitic and other
rocks. When the calcareous sediments beneath were
metamorphosed into marble, the overlying deposits of
clay became mica schists, and the small beds of sand
became quartzite. In many places, during the lapse of
centuries, the schist was removed by a process of erosion.

In Clarendon deposits of marble and dolomite to-
gether measure 1,200 feet in thickness, and a fair
average of the thickness of the marble beds is said to
be 663 feet. The infinite patience of Nature, and the
almost incredible length of geological periods, is well
illustrated in the time necessary for the laying down of
marble beds six hundred or seven hundred feet in thick-
ness as a result of the accumulation of the shells of tiny
marine animals. The marble area of Vermont consists
chiefly of a long and comparatively narrow strip in the
western portion of the State.



THE MAKING OF THE MOUNTAINS 13

Most Vermont granite is a mixture of quartz, mica
and feldspar. The mica usually is black and of the
variety known as biotite, but the Bethel white granite
contains a white mica called muscovite.

Vermont granite generally contains very little iron.
The difiference in the various shades of gray is chiefly
due to a greater or less amount of black mica. Prof.
T. N. Dale is of the opinion that most of the Vermont
granites belong to the late Devonian or early Carbonif-
erous periods. All of the Vermont granites are of
igneous origin, being forced up from beneath as molten
masses, through schists or other older rocks. Mount
Ascutney shows evidences of volcanic action, there being
indications of two eruptions. The first eruption gave
rise to the main body of the mountain. According to
Prof. C. H. Richardson *'the granite flowed out over the
encircling limestone like molten lava, and calcined the
lime to a distance of more than five hundred feet." Little
Ascutney represents a second eruption. Barre granite
is of volcanic origin. Blue Mountain, a granite deposit
in Ryegate, and Orange Mountain, are modern repre-
sentatives of extinct volcanoes. Apparently the mica
schists and mica slates through which the granites of
Barre, Bethel, Hardwick, Ryegate, Woodbury, and
other localities were forced, are metamorphosed clayey
and sandy sediments, and the present granite surfaces
have been exposed in many instances by erosion.

Granite is more widely distributed throughout Ver-
mont than either marble or slate, but the deposits are
confined chiefly to the eastern portion of the State.



Chapter II
CHAMPLAIN'S DISCOVERY



IF any European visited the region now known as
Vermont during the century and more that elapsed
between the discovery of America by Christopher
Cokimbus in 1492, and the year 1609, no record has been
left to establish that fact, and the probabilities are all
against such a visit.

When Jacques Cartier, one of the famous mariners
of France, sailed up the St. Lawrence River, in 1535,
seeking a passage to the Indies, he visited the Indian
village of Hochelaga, the site of which is now occupied
by the city of Montreal, and while there ascended a
mountain nearby, later known as Mount Royal. From
this sightly elevation Cartier beheld a great expanse
of country, the unbroken forest, stretching in every
direction, being gorgeous, as one may believe, on that
October day with the brilliant colors of the autumn
foliage; and in the far distance, to the southward, it is
altogether probable that he saw some of the peaks of
the Green Mountains. A period embracing almost
three-quarters of a century was to elapse, however, be-
fore a fellow countryman of this ''master pilot of St.
Malo" was to discover the beautiful lake that was to
perpetuate his name, and the verdant shores that border
these pleasant waters.

Although it had been nearly one hundred and seven-
teen years since the first visit of Columbus to the New
World, white men had hardly established a foothold on
the American continent in the year 1609. Far to the
southward, the Spaniards had planted the first perma-
nent settlement in what is now the United States of
America, at St. Augustine, in Florida; and at a still



18 HISTORY OF VERMONT

greater distance to the westward the Spanish colors
floated over Santa Fe, in New Mexico. The French had
established two colonies, one at Port Royal, in Nova
Scotia, in 1605, and another at Quebec, in 1608. The
first permanent English colony had just been planted
at Jamestown, in Virginia, in 1608. In all the vast
region that lay between the Atlantic and the Pacific
seas, in all the thousands of miles that stretched from
the Arctic snows to the Gulf of Mexico, only these five
little settlements were the homes of white men in 1609.
All the remainder of the continent north of Mexico was
the home and the hunting ground of the red men, who
had occupied it for centuries so many that no historian
may hope to number them.

Six years earlier, in 1603, there had arrived in Canada
a man, who, for more than thirty years, was to be the
most notable representative of France in the New
World, Samuel Champlain. Born about the year
1567 in the little seaport town of Brouage, in the ancient
province of Saintonge, in western France, from a child
he had loved the sea. His first voyage was to Spain,
with an uncle, who held high rank in the Spanish navy.
In 1599 he had been given the command of a ship bound
for the West Indies and New Spain. He had spent two
years or more in that region, landing at Vera Cruz, visit-
ing Mexico City, stopping at Panama long enough to
observe the possibilities of a ship canal connecting the
two oceans, and proceeding as far as New Granada, in
South America. During his first year in Canada,
Champlain explored the Saguenay River, and a portion
of the River and Gulf of St. Lawrence. During three



CHAMPLAIN'S DISCOVERY 19



years, beginning with 1604, he explored and charted the
Atlantic coast from eastern Nova Scotia to southern
Massachusetts. In July, 1608, having returned from a
visit to France, Champlain laid the foundations of the
city of Quebec, which he made his headquarters during
the winter of unusual severity which followed.

While the year 1609 may not be counted among the
most notable in history, it was not lacking in events
of more than ordinary importance. Pastor John Robin-
son had led to Leyden the Pilgrims who had left
Scrooby, England, for Holland, from which country
they were to fare forth, in 1620, to establish a New Eng-
land on the Massachusetts coast of America. Prince
Maurice of the Netherlands, had defeated the Arch-
duke of Austria; the independence of the united prov-
inces of Holland was recognized; and a truce of twelve
years was declared. That year, 1609, marked the final
expulsion of the Moors from Spain, the construction of
the telescope by Galileo, and the publication of the
Douay version of the Bible.

In the spring of 1609, Henry Hudson, an English
navigator in the employ of the Dutch East India Com-
pany, sailed from Amsterdam for America. Skirting
the coast from Nova Scotia southward, he entered the
Kennebec River to make repairs upon his ship at the very
time that Samuel Champlain was starting on his expedi-
tion into the country of the Iroquois.

During the preceding year John Milton had been born
and William Shakespeare had published "King Lear."
Sir Walter Raleigh was a prisoner in the Tower of Lon-
don. Only four years had passed since the discovery



20 HISTORY OF VERMONT

of the Gunpowder Plot in England; and in the same
year, 1605, Bacon published his "Advancement of Learn-
ing." Queen Elizabeth had been dead only six years,
and a score of years had elapsed since the defeat of the
Spanish Armada.

James I was the ruler of Great Britain, Henry IV,
better known as Henry of Navarre, was monarch of
France, and Philip III sat upon the throne of Spain.

During the winter of 1608-9 Champlain had learned
from the Indians of a large lake lying to the south-
west, surrounded by a region of lofty mountains and
beautiful valleys. Having been urged to join a war
party of Hurons and Algonquins on an expedition
against their ancient enemy, the Iroquois, he yielded
to their solicitation in order that he might explore the
country which the Indians had pictured in such an allur-
ing manner.

After spending nearly a week in war dances and war
feasts, Champlain and his party, consisting of eleven
Frenchmen and a band of Montagnais Indians, left
Quebec, June 18, 1609. A little later the size of the
expedition was increased by the addition of Huron and
Algonquin warriors. At the mouth of the River of the
Iroquois, now known as the Richelieu, two days were
spent, and a disagreement having arisen over the plan
of campaign, a portion of the Indians refused to accom-
pany the expedition and returned to their homes.

On June 28, the party started southward. Champlain
and his countrymen, in a small shallop, left their allies
behind, owing to the superior sailing qualities of their
craft, and crossing the Basin of Chambly were surprised



CHAMPLAIN'S DISCOVERY 21

to find rapids that made navigation impossible. The
Indians had promised Champlain that he would find
an unobstructed course for the whole of the journey,
and he says in his Journal : "It afflicted me and troubled
me exceedingly to be obliged to return without having
seen so great a lake, full of fair islands and bordered
with the fine countries which they had described to me."

Upon reflection, however, he decided to go on with
two of his countrymen, who volunteered to accompany
him, together with sixty Indians in twenty-four canoes.
The party left the head of the Chambly Rapids on July
2, according to Champlain' s record, the arms, baggage
and canoes being carried around the most dangerous
part of the rapids. During the day a stop was made
for a brief hunting expedition at an island covered with
beautiful pines. Bourne, a translator of Champlain's
Journal, believes this island to have been St. Therese.
Proceeding a little farther, a camp was made for the
night, the construction of which the explorer describes
in detail in his personal narrative.

Following his own account of the journey we read
that on the next day, July 3, many pretty islands, low
and covered with forests and meadows, were passed —
islands upon which were found stags, fallow deer, fawns,
roebucks, and other animals — and the camp for the night
was made at the entrance to the lake. On July 4, a day
destined to become a notable anniversary in the new
country which he was exploring, Champlain entered this
noble lake to which he gave his name. As he advanced
southward, passing the large islands in its northern
waters, a wonderful prospect opened before him on this



22 HISTORY OF VERMONT

midsummer day. Seldom has an explorer been re-
warded by a fairer spectacle than this expanse of water,
broad enough and deep enough to float the armadas of
Europe, and guarded on either hand by a wall of moun-
tains. From the margin of the lake nearly to the sum-
mits of the Green and Adirondack peaks, stretched the
virgin forest; and at this season the songs of birds must
have greeted the ear, and the flowers at the margin of
the woodland must have delighted the gaze of the
traveller.

The Indian guides told Champlain many things —
That the larger islands of the lake "formerly had been
inhabited by savages, like the River of the Iroquois, but
they had been abandoned since they had been at war with
one another" ; that to the eastward was a region in-
habited by the Iroquois, consisting of "beautiful valleys
and open stretches fertile in grain * * * with a
great many other fruits."

One difficult passage in the explorer's description of
the country is his allusion to snow covered mountains to
the eastward, meaning the Green Mountains. One can
hardly imagine the summits of Mount Mansfield and
Camel's Hump white with snow in the month of July,
and if the season had been unusually cold an intelligent
observer like Champlain probably would have recorded
the fact. Whether he saw some peculiar cloud forma-
tion, or the whitened surface of a landslide may not
easily be determined. Possibly exaggeration was not
wholly absent from the narrative.

It is interesting to compare Champlain's description
of the Green Mountains with that of a party from



CHAMPLAIN'S DISCOVERY 23

Piscataqua which visited the White Mountain region in
1642, and told of summits above the clouds, covered with
snow throughout the year. Another comparison may
be made with a "Chorographical map" published about
1779. on which appears a brief description of the Adiron-
dack Mountain region, including a statement that
"through this tract of land runs a chain of mountains
which from Lake Champlain on one side and the River
St. Lawrence on the other side, show their tops always
white with snow." It is not impossible that these
travellers of an earlier day than ours perceived some
features of the landscape with the eye of imagination.
As Champlain and his party drew near to the region
where their enemies, the Iroquois, might be found,
greater precautions were taken to avoid discovery.
Travelling was done by night and during the day the
warriors withdrew to the seclusion of the forests for
rest and safety. If the explorer's dates are not con-
fused, he spent a good deal more time after entering the
lake, and before encountering the enemy on July 30, than
was necessary to traverse the distance between the pres-
ent sites of Rouses Point and Ticonderoga. No
record is left to account for nearly the whole month
of July. It is hardly to be supposed that this party on
an aggressive and warlike errand in a hostile country,
where the enemy might be encountered at any hour,
would pause for two or three weeks of hunting, or to
permit the French leader to explore the newly discovered
country. And if Champlain had interrupted this mili-
tary campaign to penetrate the surrounding region, it is
entirely reasonable to suppose that this careful narrator



24 HISTORY OF VERMONT

of events would have mentioned the fact in his Journals.
It is not easy to devise a satisfactory explanation for this
unaccounted period, nor is it safe, without further
evidence, to discredit Champlain's dates.

As the party was proceeding southward, about ten
o'clock on the evening of July 29, an Iroquois expedition
was encountered going northward, "at the end of a
cape that projects into the lake on the west side."

With loud outcries the opposing forces began to pre-
pare their arms for battle, but neither the hour nor the
place was favorable to the methods of warfare employed
by the American Indians. The Iroquois, therefore,
withdrew to land and constructed a barricade, while the
invaders drew their canoes together and fastened them
to poles in order that their forces might not be scattered.
When the Iroquois had put their forces into battle array,
they dispatched two canoes to the Algonquins to learn
if the latter wanted to fight. Being assured that nothing
else was desired they withdrew and waited for the morn-
ing, the remainder of the night being devoted to the
singing of war songs, to war dances, and to an exchange
of taunts and insults. During all this time Champlain
and his two countrymen remained concealed in the canoes
of the Algonquins.

At daybreak the attacking party went ashore, the
three Frenchmen wearing light armor, and each being
armed with an arquebus. The Iroquois advanced from
their barricade, with nearly two hundred warriors,
ready for battle, while the attacking party consisted, as
previously stated, of only sixty Indians and three Euro-
peans. Champlain says of the Iroquois that they "were



CHAMPLAIN'S DISCOVERY 25

strong and robust to look at, coming slowly toward us
wath a dignity and assurance that pleased me very
much." At their head were three chiefs, each being
distinguished by wearing three large plumes. As the
Algonquins advanced toward the enemy they opened
their ranks to enable Champlain to take the lead. When
he came within thirty paces of the Iroquois he halted,
aimed at one of the three chiefs, and brought two to the
ground, wounding also one of their companions so that
he died later. The arrows then began to fly from both
sides, Champlain's Indian allies shouting loudly in
exultation over the success of their leader. As Cham-
plain was loading his weapon again one of his country-
men fired a shot from the nearby forest. Unaccustomed
to these strange and deadly weapons, the Iroquois fled
into the depths of the woods with their wounded. Pur-
suing them, Champlain and his allies killed several more
of the enemy and captured ten or twelve prisoners.
Fifteen or sixteen of the Algonquins were slightly
wounded by arrow shots.

A considerable quantity of Indian corn and meal was
captured, in addition to such weapons as had been
abandoned by the fleeing Iroquois. After celebrating
the victory for three hours, the triumphant warriors
started on their return trip northward.

In his narrative of the battle Champlain says the
Iroquois were much astonished that their chieftains had
been so quickly killed, "although they were provided
with armor woven from cotton thread and from wood,
proof against arrows." This is said to be the first refer-
ence in American history to the use of cotton.



26 HISTORY OF VERMONT

There is a difference of opinion as to the scene of this
battle, but the best evidence available seems to indicate
what the majority of historians believe, that the conflict
took place not far from the point where nearly a century
and a half later, the fortress of Ticonderoga was built.

This brief conflict in the heart of the wilderness, on
the shores of a newly discovered lake, meant more than
a battle in which less than three hundred Indians and
three white men were engaged. It was the meeting of
a system of warfare which had prevailed on the Ameri-
can continent probably for thousands of years, with the
European system, and it was almost inevitable that fire-
arms should win over primitive bows and arrows, not
only on Lake Champlain, but throughout the Americas.

The Iroquois learned their lesson well, and not very
long thereafter they found a way to secure more modern
weapons and to learn how to use them. If news of the
battle had reached the courts of England and France as
speedily as reports of later battles in that same region,
it would have been considered only an insignificant
skirmish; and yet it exerted a powerful influence upon
the destiny of America, for it made the Iroquois, the
most powerful of Indian confederations, the foes of
France and the friends of England, and helped to make
this a country of English ideas and English speech. All
this was made possible to no inconsiderable degree by
the alliance which the great French pioneer made with
the enemies of the Iroquois.

After travelling eight leagues to the northward on
the day of the battle, the victors made their camp at the
close of the day, and here one of the prisoners was tor-



CHAMPLAIN'S DISCOVERY 27

tured and slain, greatly to the distress of Champlain.
The party proceeded directly to Canada, and there is no
record that Champlain again saw the beautiful lake
which was to be his noblest monument, or the region now
called Vermont, which he discovered, although there
is no direct proof that he set foot upon its soil. The
Indian warriors went their several ways, and Champlain
soon embarked for his native France, where he visited
the King at Fontainbleau, and told him of his adventures
in the wilderness.

At the time of his discovery of Vermont, Champlain
was about forty-two years old. The remainder of his



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