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have also been opened in Hardwick, Williamstown, Dummerston, Windsor, and Ryegate during this period.
The rapid growth in the population of some of these towns is due almost entirely to the development of this industry. The city of Barre has the largest per cent of increase in population. In a single year 1,000 Scotch families came to work in the quarries; and between 1880 and 1890 the population of that town trebled.
The quarrying and cutting of slate is an important industry in southwestern Vermont. Twenty-three establishments engaged in the manufacture of roofing material are reported in the State in 1900. Slate goods from these factories are now shipped to all parts of our country and even to Europe.
Vermont now ranks first among the States in monumental work, and in the production of slate goods is exceeded only by the State of Pennsylvania. A fitting type of her monumental work is the Burns monument, which was unveiled in Barre in 1899. This is made entirely of Barre granite, and is conceded by all to be of master workmanship. The statue represents the peasant plowman in workaday garb returning from his daily toil.
Of equal interest are the four panels, executed in high relief, illustrating some of the poems of Burns. The front panel, representing “The Cotter's Saturday Night," is the Burns family at evening devotions about a table, the father reading from the Bible, to which all listen with devout interest.
Prominent in Politics.-Vermont statesmen are not altogether past products. In the last half century no name has been more closely identified with the political history of the State than that of Justin S. Morrill. He was first elected to Congress in 1855; and, after serving in the House of Representatives for a dozen years, was transferred to the Senate. This position he held till his death.
He is chiefly known in connection with the Morrill tariff, which was reported by him in the House in 1861; and for the important part which he played in securing the enactment that established agricultural colleges in all the States. At his suggestion, old Representative Hall, in the United States Capitol, was set apart as a national hall of statuary, where each State was privileged to place statues of her chosen sons, to stand permanent memorials of her past achievements. And there to-day statues of the hero of Ticonderoga and Jacob Collamer fittingly represent the Green Mountain State among the tributes of her sister common wealths.
At the time of his death (1899) Mr. Morrill's congressional service of nearly forty-four years had exceeded that of any living colleague; and throughout his entire service Mr. Morrill was held in great esteem by the lawmakers of both parties.
Of equal rank stands also George F. Edmunds. He was born in Richmond and commenced the practise of law
in Burlington in 1851. From this time on he was closely identified with the government of our State, both in the House of Representatives and in the Senate.
On the death of Solomon Foot, he was appointed to fill the vacancy from Vermont in the United States Senate, taking his seat in 1866. His labors for the establishment
of a national university at Hon. Justin S. Morrill.
Washington were eminently
successful. This position he continued to hold for twenty-five years, when he resigned He was considered a leading man in the Senate, and held in great respect by his colleagues, gaining great distinction as a constitutional lawyer.
In the National Republican Convention of 1880 he was largely supported for the Presidency of the United States.
In this list of great men of political distinction we would place also the name of Edward J. Phelps. Born in Middlebury, he
George F. Edmunds. was graduated at Middlebury College, and afterward practised law in both New York and Burlington.
He has held many positions of distinction. In 1885 he was appointed by President Cleveland United States Minister to Great Britain ; and he was one of the counsel for the United States before the Bering Sea arbitration tribunal in 1892. He died in 1900.
Historical Writers. The late Rowland E. Robinson, as a storywriter, has stood easily ahead of all Vermont writers in the last half century. In such books as Uncle Lisha's
Edward J. Phelps. Shop, Sam Lovell's Camp, Sam Lovell's Boy, the Danvis Pioneer, etc., he has portrayed the life of the early Vermonter in a simple but very charming manner, preserving the peculiar language of the New England country folk, who dwelt apart from the education and culture of the cities, as well as the so-called “ Canuck" dialect, a curious mixture of bad English and the speech of our neighbor across the line.
Most of his stories were written after he was deprived of his sight; he worked by the aid of the grooved board, which enabled him to guide his lines. Always a student of nature and possessing keen discernment, his misfortune could not deprive him of the true sight, that of the mind; and out of this great treasure-house, to the last, he was able to draw rich word-pictures.
A prominent feature of all his stories is their whole. someness. It is said, of all the compliments paid his work, the one which pleased him most was the testimony of a mother who said, “Mr. Robinson's books are the kind I like my boys to read."
In a series of histories entitled The Commonwealth, he was given the honor of writing the history of Vermont, a task which he accomplished in an eminently successful manner.
He died at his home in Ferrisburg in 1900.
Hiland Hall's Early History of Vermont, and G. G. Benedict's Vermont in the Civil War are both recognized
authorities on those portions of Vermont history of which they treat.
Julia C. R. Dorr. — Vermont has harbored also a gifted authoress in the last half century in Mrs. Julia C. R. Dorr, who, though born in the South, has for many years made Rutland her home. She is both a novelist and a poetess; but she has gained her chief
fame as a song - writer; Rowland E. Robinson.
and among America's
sweet singers she holds high rank. A fair type of her songs is the sweet poem, In Memoriam, written at the death of Mr. Robinson and ending with—“And he who once was blind hath done with night.”
Thomas W. Wood.—Vermont has not been without her artists in this period. Prominent among them is Thomas Waterman Wood, who belongs not wholly to this period, having done much commendable work even before the middle of the nineteenth century. He was born in Montpelier in 1823, and in that city spent most of his days;