Design a site like this with
Get started

Village History

East Hardwick Village – Photo Gallery & Historic Tidbits

Captions – Top left to right

(1) Baptist Church on corner of Main and School Streets
(2) Congregational Church and the Jewett Chapel on East Church Street
(3) Covered Bridge over Lamoille River on Main Street
(4) Lamoille Valley Creamery Postcard
(5) East Hardwick General Store Delivery Truck
(6) Mules on Main Street
(7) Lamoille Depot on Stevens Lane
(8) McFeeters Feed Store (siding on rail road tracks) & Congregational Church on East Church Street
(9) East Hardwick Hardware Store on the corner of Main and East Church Streets, on Lamoille River

Ed Note: I have used the contemporary street names in the captions above. East Church Street was previously known as School Street. Stevens Lane was previously named Depot Street. School Street was previously known as Church Street.

Historic Tidbits

Bits of historical information relating to the history of East Hardwick Village. Presented in a timeline with other significant events for context. Compiled by C. Michaels

1775 – 1783: The American Revolution / American War of Independence

1779: The Bayley-Hazen Military Road (7) was built through Hardwick at what is now Hardwick Street. The first settlers of Hardwick used the Bailey-Hazen to get here. Ed. Note: Settled in 1793, “Hardwick Street,”  is  the  oldest  village  in  the town. (11)

1780: The town of Hardwick was granted by the Vermont General Assembly in 1780 and chartered to Danforth Keys and his associates in 1781. (1) In all there were 23,040 acres and 67 landholders, some of whose families came from Hardwick, Massachusetts. (10)

1791: Vermont Statehood was granted on March 4. (8)

1796 – 1798: In May of 1796, Samuel Stevens of Newbury, Vermont purchased for 100 pounds sterling a lot of land from Paul Spooner, one of the original landholders. It was situated along the Lamoille River and registered as lot 8 in the fourth range of the Hardwick land grant. (2) Paul Wood writes “Samuel Stevens, the first settler in East Hardwick in 1797, saw the need and the business potential and built a saw mill in 1798 and a grist mill in 1800, both at the East Hardwick falls on the Lamoille River.” (1) Stevens moved to East Hardwick into a log house, with his bride, Puah Mellon, in 1797 (10). Ed. Notes: Samuel and Puah had 11 children and built the brick house on Stevens Lane (now a private residence and Summer Sweet Gardens). The settlement was also referred to as Stevens Mills, Stevensville and Stevens Village.

1799: The town voted to build a bridge over the river at Stevens Mills. This was Hardwick’s first substantial bridge across the Lamoille River and was built to allow farmers west of the river to reach the mills. (1)

1800 – 1850: The first period of growth in the village. Federal and Greek Revival residences and commercial structures were built on Main, Church and School Streets. (3) Ed. note: Many of the older structures still standing in the village were built during this period.

1803: The East Hardwick First Congregational Church was organized on July 29 with 7 male and 9 female members. The church building in East Hardwick was erected in 1851. By 1860 there were 127 members. (10)
Ed note: the church building is no longer standing and the congregation meets in the Jewett Chapel. The parsonage is now a private residence.

1831: A Baptist Church was formed in East Hardwick Village. It had 25 original members. The meeting house was built in 1840 and, with 150 members, was one of the most flourishing churches in Northern Vermont. (10) Ed note: The building stood on the corner of Main and School Streets. The parsonage, next door on School Street, is still standing and is a private residence.

1846: A post office opened in East Hardwick Village. 

1861- 1865: The American Civil War

1867: The postal name of the village became East Hardwick. (Hardwick Village, which had been South Hardwick, became Hardwick.) (1)

1871: The first railroad cars pulled into East Hardwick Village in November. The depot was opened in 1872 and was located on what is now Stevens Lane, then called Depot Street. The Montpelier Argus & Patriot published on November 23, 1871 “The cars reached East Hardwick at 10 o’clock last Friday forenoon, amid the ringing of bells and firing of anvils, mingled with the shouts of men and boys, many of whom saw them for the first time in their lives.” Ed. note: Thanks to Elizabeth Dow and the Hardwick Historical Society for providing this clipping.

Map shows location of Train Depot, Grange, Church and School
on what is now East Church Street and Stevens Lane – Date Unknown

1872: The Grange in East Hardwick was organized in February and received national dispensation on May 16. Governor Charles James Bell (1845-1909) was the first master. The Grange building was built in 1909. The Caledonia #9 Grange Hall at 88 Church Street is now the oldest continuously operating Grange in New England. In 2017, the building was listed with the National Registry of Historic Places. (5) (9) Ed. note: The oldest secretary’s log found in the Grange’s archives is from February 1873.

1887: Child’s Gazetteer reports on East Hardwick Village that “It now  contains two churches, Congregational and Baptist, two general  stores,  jewelry store, tinshop, and the following manufactures:  Livingston & Montgomery,  carriages ; Keith  &  Lawrence,  lumber ; G.  L.  Johnson, grist-mill; G.  D.  Goodrich, bee  keepers  supplies.” (11)

1893: The Lamoille Valley Creamery opens near the rail line and continues to grow, as cow farming increases in the fertile hills around East Hardwick. According to Wood, “By the 1910s, the Lamoille Valley Creamery had developed into one of Vermont’s largest creameries, making in June of 1914, 70,748 pounds of butter from 230,980 pounds of cream and representing the product of 246 dairy farms and 3,500 cows.” (1)

1893: The Caledonia Grange of East Hardwick held its first annual agricultural fair that, by 1900, drew over 1,500 people. Horses, cows, poultry, vegetables, grain, fruit, fancy work, patchwork and rugs were judged and prizes awarded. (1) Ed. note: As Hardwick developed to support the lumber, then granite industries, East Hardwick, with its feed store, train depot, grange, church, school, post office, stores and creameries, continued to be the commercial and social center for the surrounding farms well into the 1950’s.

1914 – 1918: The First World War (WWI)

1929-1939: The Great Depression


(1) Hardwick Moves Downhill, Twice, Paul Wood, 2/10/2008, Greensboro Historical Society
(2) Original deed, privately held
(3) History Survey, Vermont Division for Historic Preservation
(4) Various references were found for 1797 and 1798. According to Abby M. Hemenway’s Vermont Historical Gazetteer August 29, 1797 was the date Stevens settled in East Hardwick.
(5) Caledonia Grange Archives and Bell Family Collection
(6) Wikipedia Hardwick, Vermont
(7) Wikipedia Bayley Hazen Military Road
(8) Brittanica / Vermont History Explorer
(9) Wikipedia National Registry of Historic Places in Caledonia County
(10) Vermont Quarterly Gazette, A Series of Town Histories, Caledonia County, Hemenway, 1859
(11) Gazetteer & Business Directory of Caledonia and Essex Counties, Vt. 1764-1887 by Child, Hamilton, published 1887.