Orleans, Vermont

Orleans, Vermont
Orleans, Vermont
—  Village  —
Orleans, Vermont is located in Vermont
Orleans, Vermont
Location within the state of Vermont
Coordinates: 44°48′31″N 72°12′15″W / 44.80861°N 72.20417°W / 44.80861; -72.20417Coordinates: 44°48′31″N 72°12′15″W / 44.80861°N 72.20417°W / 44.80861; -72.20417
Country United States
State Vermont
County Orleans
 – Total 0.7 sq mi (1.8 km2)
 – Land 0.7 sq mi (1.8 km2)
 – Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
Elevation 1,191 ft (363 m)
Population (2000)
 – Total 826
 – Density 1,204.2/sq mi (464.9/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 – Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 05860
Area code(s) 802
FIPS code 50-53575[1]
GNIS feature ID 1458854[2]

Orleans is a village in the northwestern corner of Barton, Orleans County, Vermont, United States. The population was 826 at the 2000 census, making it the largest village in Orleans County.[3]



Like all Vermont incorporated villages, the government is run directly by the people at the village meeting held on the second Tuesday of March. They elect all officers including those in the Fire Department.


  • Moderator (runs March village meeting. Elected each year) - Bill Davies[4]
  • Trustee - Larry Wilcox
  • Trustee - Gerry Martel
  • Trustee - Eric Lanou
  • Clerk - Shelia Martin
  • Village Manager (appointed by Trustees) - John Morley III

Fire department

In 2008, the department provided service not only to the village but to the adjacent town of Brownington.[5]

Water and sewage

The village pumps water from the Willoughby River to its high reservoir during off-peak hours. The water is treated with chlorine, fluoride and polyphosphate. Sewage is treated by an anoxic-oxic system.[6]

Billing and fees are quarterly. Households or apartment buildings pay a flat fee of $39 per quarter, plus $2 for 1,000 US gallons (3,800 l; 830 imp gal) of water beyond 5,000 US gallons (19,000 l; 4,200 imp gal). There is a flat fee of $78.12 per dwelling per quarter for sewage.[6]


The village and surrounding area supports a graded school. The effective spending per pupil was $11,770 in 2008.[7] The average in Vermont was $11,548.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 0.7 square mile (1.8 km2), all land.

The village is at the northwestern corner of the town of Barton.

At the edge of the village, the Willoughby River Falls is a 200-foot (61 m) long stretch of river with cascades and a chute. In spring trout migrate up the river and falls from Lake Memphremagog.[8]


Roger Enos purchased land in 1820 in the area from Ira Allen, who had been given original grants in the area but may have purchased this parcel from Herman Allen.[9] It was named "Barton Landing," as a reminder that this was the first place where craft could be safely loaded for transportation down the Barton River to Lake Memphremagog. The place was where the Willoughby River entered the Barton River, providing sufficient water for flotation

In 1833, the Valley House was built as a restaurant and tavern. In 1875 twenty rooms were added for an inn. The building was destroyed by fire in 1998.

The railroad reached the town in 1859-1860.

The town changed its name to Orleans in 1908 by popular vote.

In the late 1970s, the federal and state governments stopped the village from dumping raw sewage into the Barton River. Orleans' new treatment plant cost $2.8 million, 90% of which was paid for by state and federal governments. The village was able to separate out its old storm sewers from the sewage system.[6]

In 1999, the local Ethan Allen plant employed 600 workers. This dropped substantially in the 21st century.[10]


The village showed a gain in population in 2000, the first since 1940.

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 826 people, 364 households, and 228 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,204.2 people per square mile (462.2/km2). There were 400 housing units at an average density of 583.1/sq mi (223.8/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 97.82% White, 0.12% African American, 0.36% Native American, 0.48% Asian, and 1.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.36% of the population.

There were 364 households out of which 30.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.3% were married couples living together, 9.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.1% were non-families. 33.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 2.84.

In the village the population was spread out with 25.2% under the age of 18, 7.4% from 18 to 24, 25.4% from 25 to 44, 23.7% from 45 to 64, and 18.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 99.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.1 males.


Personal Income

The median income for a household in the village was $26,131, and the median income for a family was $34,583. Males had a median income of $25,789 versus $21,750 for females. The per capita income for the village was $15,318. About 11.6% of families and 12.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.2% of those under age 18 and 12.5% of those age 65 or over.


Ethan Allen Manufacturing employs about 325 workers locally.[11][12] In 2005 the plant was valued at $7,048,200 and was sited on 85 acres (340,000 m2).[13]


Christian Ministries owns radio station W243AE which broadcasts out of Orleans on 96.5 FM.[14]


Orleans operates its own Electric Department which, aside from serving the village, also provides power to the parts of Barton outside the village, as well as West Brownington and East Irasburg. It has 665 customers.[15][16][17] It does not generate power but purchases it in bulk.[18] It maintains the distribution system. 70% of the department's expense is for power purchases.[19]


Orleans has a library which is open 28 hours a week over four days. It is a non-profit corporation. There is one part-time paid librarian. Other help is volunteer. The library is unique in the county for having an endowment left as an estate which also constructed the building.


The elementary school was recognized as being among the ten "most improved" schools in the state in 2008. It also exceeded state averages in every category on the standardized NECAP test and was the only school in the area to do so.[20]


Major routes

The opening of the Interstate north on November 9, 1972 and opening south in 1978 had an impact on the town comparable to the opening of the railway a century earlier.[21]

During the April school vacation since at least 1983, the village has hired school children to clean the village streets for one day as part of a village "spring cleaning."[22]


Willoughby Falls Bridge needed replacing in 2007. It will cost $1.6 million. The village must contribute 10% ($160,000). This was the most expensive state project in Orleans County that year.[23]

Local community public and private transportation

Vermont Transit services Orleans.[24]


While the Washington County Railroad (The Vermont Railway System) runs through Orleans, it does not service the town.

Notable native


  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. http://geonames.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ See Historical U.S. Census totals for Orleans County, Vermont#Villages
  4. ^ Creaser, Richard (March 21, 2007). Orleans Village Meeting is brief and orderly. The Chronicle. 
  5. ^ Creaser, Richard (January 28, 2009). Water budget calls for higher rates. the Chronicle. 
  6. ^ a b c Chris Braithwaite = Editorial:The grim arithmetic of village utilities - Part 2 (August 27, 2008). the Chronicle. 
  7. ^ About Your 2008 School Taxes flyer sent with real estate bills
  8. ^ http://www.anr.state.vt.us/dec//waterq/planning/docs/pl_basin17.assessment_report.pdf retrieved August 9, 2007
  9. ^ Vermont Community History: Orleans
  10. ^ Gresser, Joseph (September 15, 2010). "Ethan Allen is hiring again". the Chronicle (Barton, Vermont): pp. 1A. 
  11. ^ http://vtwoodnet.org/news_articles/ethan_allen_power_plant.htm
  12. ^ The Chronicle, July 1, page 10, Ethan Allen cuts 260 jobs", Joseph Cresser
  13. ^ Reppraisal of the Town of Barton, Vermont, July 6, 2005
  14. ^ Barton, Vermont (VT) Detailed Profile - relocation, real estate, travel, jobs, hospitals, schools, crime, news, sex offenders
  15. ^ Electric Utilities List : Electric : Vermont Department of Public Service
  16. ^ "Customers" refers to number of hookups, not individuals
  17. ^ http://www3.digitalfrontier.com/essential_wc5/vppsa/uploads/PubPowPres.pdf
  18. ^ Creaser, Richard (October 24, 2007). Village electric rates will climb 10 percent. the Chronicle. 
  19. ^ Creaser, Richard (18 August 2010). "Orleans looks at joint power plant with Barton". Barton, Vermont: the Chronicle. pp. 1. 
  20. ^ Braithwaite, Chris (February 4, 2009). Local schools fare well in NECAP tests. the Chronicle. 
  21. ^ Young, Darlene (1998). A history of Barton Vermont. Crystal Lake Falls Historical Association. 
  22. ^ Creaser, Richard. (April 16, 2008). Students hit the village streets. the Chronicle. 
  23. ^ Creaser, Richard (November 14, 2007). The bridges of Orleans County await repair. the Chronicle. 
  24. ^ Bus service
  25. ^ BIOPROJ.SABR.ORG :: The Baseball Biography Project


  • Darrell Hoyt (1985). Sketches of Orleans, Vermont. Mempremagog Press. ISBN 0-9610860-2-5. 

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