Welcome to the Brattleboro Historical Society

There’s Always Something Happening in History

Here We Are, with BHS Trustee Lee Ha

Lee Ha is a deep-dive researcher at the Brattleboro Historical Society. She talks about the thrill of the chase, unearthing surprises, and also shares scenes from her early life, including travels to Viet Nam.

Watch Lee on Here We Are, Brattleboro’s Talk Show with Wendy O’Connell.

Do you look at the Retreat Meadows and say, “why is that pond called “Meadows?” Do you drive along Canal Street and think, “where’s the canal?” Do you ever think to yourself, “has anyone ever looked into these perplexing questions?”

We have good news: the answer to your final question is, “yes.” And the answer to all your other questions can be found in the Brattleboro Historical Society Newsletter.

How do you get this fantastic source of knowledge nuggets timely updates from the Brattleboro Historical Society? Join us!

BHS in Action!

Watch this short video introduction to the Brattleboro Historical Society

Telling The story

Brattleboro Historical Society was founded in 1982 as a non-profit organization by a group of local historians and civic leaders interested in Brattleboro’s past. The Society’s mission is to collect and preserve historical artifacts, documents, photographs, and data of persons, places, and events significant to Brattleboro from its earliest days to the present, and to disseminate Brattleboro’s history through research, exhibits, and interpretation of the collection for the education and enjoyment of the community. Join us!

A Look Inside the archive

Lee Ha started scanning the historical society’s negative collection in 2014 when the BHS board of trustees approved purchasing a negative scanner.

That first day she scanned 20 images, not seen since they had been developed some 60 years prior, thus beginning the massive scanning project.

The project continued and new volunteers have taken over the process.

Today the digital archive includes approximately 10,000 photos, most are not online, but we endeavor to upload as many as we can. Click yonder button and see how things are progressing.

Old News & New Notes

Stories from Brattleboro history that you may have missed the first time.

George Bemis and the Phone Message

George Bemis and the Phone Message

Intro In the General Store...In 1954 George Bemis became the owner and manager of Hotel Brooks. In 1976 he was honored as the Chamber of Commerce's Man of the Year. During his time in town he was a big supporter of the Brattleboro Outing Club. At the dinner, held at...

Updates on the doings of the Brattleboro Historical Society.

Feature Exhibits

Development and Indigenous Burials

Development and Indigenous Burials

In 1922 the business community was pretty excited.  Companies along Vernon Road were having a great deal of success.  The White River Chair Company, Crosby Milling and Fort Dummer Cotton Mill had all settled into the southeast corner of town and caused a housing boom....

Brattleboro’s burgeoning ski industry

Brattleboro’s burgeoning ski industry

Brattleboro's Burgeoning Ski IndustryIn 1935 Brattleboro was well-known in the burgeoning New England skiing community. The annual Brattleboro Outing Club ski jump attracted thousands of people to the area every year. New Englanders came to Brattleboro all winter to...

Brooks House

Brooks House

In November 1869 the St. Albans Weekly Messenger reported on the status of Brattleboro, a town that was about as far away from St. Albans as you could get and still be in Vermont. The paper was commenting on Brattleboro’s recent hard times. In October, a Whetstone Brook freshet had wiped out many of the businesses along the brook and in early November a fire had destroyed all of the businesses on the west side of Main Street between Elliot and High Streets.


Join Us

Brattleboro Historical Society was founded in 1982 as a non-profit organization by a group of local historians and civic leaders interested in Brattleboro’s past. The Society’s mission is the telling of Brattleboro's story. Join us!