Gathering Clouds

civil war monument on brattleboro common

The monument to Brattleboro’s fallen in the Great Rebellion anchors the Common on the north end of town; America’s heartrending Civil War of 1861-1865 pulled 34,000 Vermonters into a faraway world of bloodshed and confusion.  To this day, many cellar holes can be found in forests regrown over the hillside farms abandoned in the decades after the conflict, their native sons never having returned home. Vermont’s constitution was the first to abolish slavery, even before it was admitted as a state to the Union. Memorial Day is a day to remember, consider, and hope for better.


necrr double track

A northbound New England Central freight waits on a siding as Amtrak slides by, pulling into Brattleboro’s Union Station with the 5:10 pm St. Albans-bound Vermonter. Moments like these bring out the train-loving boy in me, from 40 years ago…