Whereas downtown commercial districts flourished during the 19th and early 20th centuries, the widespread popularity of the automobile began drawing people away from Main Street and out onto the open road at the outskirts of town. Invariably, businesses began to spring up along roadside, catering to this new, increasingly mobile culture. Vermont's roadside culture was not as developed as that of other more populous states. Nonetheless, several types of businesses began popping up on Vermont's highways, many of which remain today. Learning about the style and development of a few types of these businesses can help in identifying the innumerable other businesses that moved their wares roadside.
Click on the links below to learn more about the development of roadside architecture.