Burlington 1877

What still stands from between 1869 and 1877 in burlington, VT?



452 Colchester is listed on the 1890 C. M. Hopkins map as being owned by “Clipper Hose”, and mentioned in the 1890 Burlington City Directory as being the Hose Room for the Clipper Hose Company, No. 6. While the address mentioned in the directory is 454 Colchester, the footprint of the property that is listed at that location by the 1970 Sanborn Insurance map is incompatible with the footprint provided by the 1890 map. It is assumed that the address was altered to accommodate the transformation of an adjacent property into a duplex.

The beginning of the Fire Department in Burlington is said to have begun on June 16, 1829 when the old court house burned. An effort was then made to purchase something to aid the bucket brigade, and the Burlington Fire Co. was incorporated October 29, 1829. As time progressed fire fighting became more organized and technology was used to greater effect. Multiple companies existed and worked independently of each other.[1]

Under the City Charter of 1865, a Fire Department was established. It consisted of a Chief and four Assistant Engineers, who should have control over the four companies then existing, including the independent volunteers. After the introduction of the water supply in 1867, hose carts and spiders for the fire hydrants gradually supplanted the use of the engines. Besides those organized by the original engine companies were ...... The Clippers, No. 6, on Nov. 7, 1871, with a station on Colchester Avenue..... ”[2]

The Clipper Hose Company is listed in the directory from 1873-1874 until 1890, at which point the A.C. Spear Fire Company appears with a location at 58 Colchester. 452 Colchester then has a four year period during which it was likely rented out or lay dormant. Henry Come is listed as being at the property in 1894, but he is gone by next year when Paul and Eli Kirby, both laborers and likely related to the Kirby family living a few blocks away on Chase Street. Fred Labelle, also a laborer and Edward Waters are living in the house at this time as well. The following year Eli Kirby moves to 353 Winooski Road. Soon after Paul Kirby moves to Winooski and Edward Waters is no longer mentioned, leaving Fred Labelle in 1897. Fred stays at the house for many years and in1909 the address changes, listing Fred Labelle as living at 452 Colchester.[3]

Tax records for 452 Colchester list multiple people as owner of this property. As of 1896 it was registered with Alzua Rumsey, changing hands around 1929 to Alice Putnam and again in 1942 to Yolande Brisson.[4]

This area of Burlington was heavily populated with manual laborers, especially those connected with the multiple mills. 452 Colchester was likely used as a boarding house for these workers as it had easy access to the large employers of the day.

[1] Allen, Charles E., About Burlington Vermont

Hobart J. Shanley & Company, Burlington, VT, 1905

[2] Allen, 103,104

[3] Burlington City Directories 1873-1897

[4] Burlington City Tax Assessors Records