196 Battery Street

Musicant Building, circa 1830


by Nate Bailly

The Musicant building is an elegant brick and granite gable front building located on the southern section of Battery Street. The structure is Greek Revival in Style. There is some question as to whether the building was constructed before or after 1830.

A building of a similar shape appears in this general location on the 1830 Ami B. Young map of Burlington. During renovations in 1976, a brick marked "1827" was found on the building's exterior. It was this same year when the northern half of the Old Stone Store across the street was built, using a very similar granite block.(1) This may lead one to conclude that the building was built in 1827, but there is also evidence to suggest a later date. The second half of the Old Stone Store was built in 1841 using what appears to be the exact same granite as on the Musicant Building. The building could just as easily have been built during this time using older materials. The gable front orientation and triangular gable vent are suggestive of a date later than 1830, but are by no means definitive. Earlier buildings neo classical in style were known to have gable front orientation.(2) It is not known what the building was formerly used for, but it may have been connected to Timothy Follett's business practices at the Stone Store across the street. The building was fully renovated by 1978, and now serves as the home for the Trust Company of Vermont.

(1) United States National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places Inventory: Battery-King St. Historic District, 1976-1978.
(2) Virginia and Lee McAlester, A Field Guide to American Houses, (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1984), 168, 178.

Photo: Nate Bailly
Back to the Waterfront...