Church Street looking South to City Hall

UTM: 18 0642163 E, 4926357 N 209 feet

L.L. McAllister

A.L. Bushey
October 29, 2006

This viewpoint documents the Rail-Removal Salvage Project in 1943.  This photograph celebrates the removal of the final rail in front of City Hall on June 25.  The crew is using the “A” frame method for removing rails by which the frame is attached to the end of a twenty-six foot boom on a Universal Truck Crane.  “The chain falls attached to the end of the frame and the boom were used for raising the frame when moving or when rough or uneven surface would not allow the frame to slide over the pavement without digging into the surface.”(1) 

The Church Street façade of City Hall dominates the backdrop of this photograph.  City Hall was built in 1928 on the site of the old City Hall, built in 1854.  The old building, which had begun to show its age, was deemed “a repellent municipal liability” by an editor of the Burlington Free Press.(2) 

The new City Hall was designed in the colonial revival style by W. M. Kendall of the McKim, Mead, and White architectural firm.   Kendall intended the design of the building to be “in accordance with the same classical principles which inspired the public buildings of the colonies and early republic.”  The construction of City Hall cost Burlington $475, 000 and many materials, including granite, brick, marble, and slate, came from Vermont.(3)

(1) 78th Report, 177, 180.

(2) City Hall Park Historic District, National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form (1977-79), 6.

(3) City Hall Park Historic District, 6.

City Hall stands today much the same as it appeared when it was built nearly seventy years ago, and still performs its initial purpose, that of the center of Burlington’s City government. 
Historic Burlington Project
Depression Era Streetscapes: Old North End | Burlington 1890 | Burlington 1877 | Burlington 1869 | Burlington 1853 | Burlington 1830
Produced by University of Vermont Historic Preservation Program graduate students in HP 206 Researching Historic Structures and Sites - Prof. Thomas Visser - in collaboration with UVM Landscape Change Program
Historic images courtesy of University of Vermont Library Special Collections, Louis L. McAllister Photograph Collection