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OUR BUILDINGS

The Varnum House

The Victorian House Gallery

Originally owned by, Harvey Varnum, the Varnum House Gallery typifies the Victorian design style popularized in rural Vermont communities in the (X) years. The property has been lovingly restored over its twenty year ownership by the Shaws and now welcomes guests in the front salon. Terry and Jane frequent the sprawling porch along Main Street throughout the summer, so don't be afraid to stop in and say hello. You may be rewarded with tales of Jeffersonville history from Jane herself.

The below was a speech given at the 2014 Memorial Day services in Jeffersonville, VT by Todd Paton, Director of Visitor Services at The Rock of Ages Quarry, Barre, VT.

We meet here together today to honor those who have given their lives in service to this great Nation. This year marks the 90th anniversary of the creation of this veterans’ memorial, which was brought to fruition through the generosity of Mr. Harvey Varnum, one of the principal founders of the company that is today known as Rock of Ages. I am pleased to stand before you on behalf of Rock of Ages today.

 

Harvey Varnum’s life typifies the American Dream of humble beginnings, hard work and eventual success. Born in Danville, VT, in 1851, early in his youth he demonstrated an innate aptitude for engineering. Although he was not college-educated, he possessed natural talent and a strong work ethic. He took a job as a laborer with the railroad in the early 1870s, laying rails for the St. Johnsbury & Lake Champlain and later served on a crew with the Bangor & Aroostock railway in Maine, where he exercised his natural aptitude for engineering.​

 

He carefully saved his money and eventually entered into a partnership to form the contracting company of Varnum & Gilfillan. After marrying, he and his wife settled in Jeffersonville. Mr. Varnum’s contracting company was utilized to engineer the roadway that now traverses Smuggler’s Notch. Varnum and Gilfillan was also hired by the City of Barre to divert a portion of the Steven’s Branch of the Winooski River to open up more land for commercial development in Barre’s downtown.

 

Possessing fine business acumen, Mr. Varnum was financially very successful. Being very community minded, he used his time, talents and money to help his fellow citizens, serving in the Vermont Legislature as a Senator from Lamoille County and holding numerous town offices during his lifetime.

 

He gave liberally to many worthwhile causes. And being especially appreciative of those who served this county in the military, he generously supported the creation of this veteran’s memorial, which was dedicated 90 years ago. In fact, his son Guy, is one of the men listed on this memorial.

 

So it is fitting on this Memorial Day to pause a moment to reflect on the sacrifice made by those who have served in every branch of this nation’s military and also to reflect on the generosity shown by community-minded people like Harvey Varnum. May their dedication and sacrifice to the United States, its principles and to their fellowman constrain us to do our part to give of our time, talents and resources to leave the world a better place than we found it.

The Carriage Barn Gallery

The Carriage House

The horse-drawn studio you see here was designed and built by Alden Bryan in 1939 for painting on cold days. It was originally mounted on a steerable sugaring sled. It is heated by a pot bellied stove. One or two horses were hitched to the sled and it was dragged up into the woods near Bryan’s house.

 

The Sugarhouse

The Sugarhouse Gallery

The horse-drawn studio you see here was designed and built by Alden Bryan in 1939 for painting on cold days. It was originally mounted on a steerable sugaring sled. It is heated by a pot bellied stove. One or two horses were hitched to the sled and it was dragged up into the woods near Bryan’s house.

 

The Landscape Painter Wagon

The horse-drawn studio you see here was designed and built by Alden Bryan in 1939 for painting on cold days. It was originally mounted on a steerable sugaring sled. It is heated by a pot bellied stove. One or two horses were hitched to the sled and it was dragged up into the woods near Bryan’s house.

 

It was here that Bryan would place the sled near to where he intended to paint. Often he would venture out to find locations that best suited him as a location to paint from. Other times when the weather was real lousy, he would fire up the wood stove and paint from inside.

The restoration of the plein air landscape wagon was done in 2006 by the Shaw family and Sarah Orton Glickman to honor the landscape painters of Jeffersonville past and present. And it is now displayed on wheels, as a curiosity, next to the Visions of Vermont gallery.

 

View Alden's work

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