Overlooking the banks of the Connecticut River and beneath the region’s famed Mt. Ascutney, Windsor is a town where the best of the past is both preserved and fueling new ventures.
This is where, in 1777, the first Constitution in America to prohibit slavery, insure voting rights, and authorize a public school system was adopted. Looking much as it did more than 200 years ago, the tavern where it happened is now a Vermont State Historic Site, open daily during the spring, summer and fall.
Nearby is the commanding Robbins and Lawrence Armory and Machine Shop. During the mid 19th century this company designed and manufactured machine tools that accelerated the industrial revolution. Today it is home to the American Precision Museum with its detailed exhibits, including period machinery, about the manufacturing history of the region.
Windsor’s 1798 Old South Church was designed by American architect Asher Benjamin, who, through the publication of a series of pattern books, brought architectural know-how to ordinary builders. One of the longest covered bridges in America connects Windsor to neighboring Cornish, NH, where the Cornish Colony Museum is located in an historic firehouse. The museum stages exhibitions of the renowned artists, sculptors, writers, architects and landscape designers who lived and worked in this area.
There’s still industry in Windsor, but it’s now of a different type.
World-famous Simon Pearce welcomes visitors to the “See It Made” Park where trained artisans are at work making hand-thrown pottery and blown glass. Next door is Harpoon Brewery where they brew a variety of beers and ales as well as Vermont Draft Soda - and serve up delicious meals, too.
Gracious lodging options come cloaked in history. Juniper Hill Inn and Snapdragon Inn are both large stately old homes. Cider Hill Gardens & Gallery offers a unique combination of greenhouses, gardens and fine art. Other shops offer books, fine crafts, antiques, liquors, wines, gifts and clothing.
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