About the Vermont Humanities CouncilBecause Ideas Matter
About VHC’s Home
When former VHC Executive Director Peter Gilbert first saw the Victorian building, he knew he’d found the future home for the Vermont Humanities Council.
It had plenty of office space, a basement big enough to hold thousands of books, large rooms for public humanities gatherings — and it was in downtown Montpelier. Additionally, the character and history of the nineteenth-century Victorian provided an appropriate setting for the state’s humanities council. It was just the building and location to make the Vermont Humanities Council more accessible to the entire state of Vermont.
Over Columbus Day Weekend 2005, VHC moved from rented space in Morrisville to this handsome building at 11 Loomis Street. To pay for the building’s purchase and renovation, VHC launched Humanities at the Center — its first capital campaign. The Humanities at the Center Campaign raised $800,000.
The Victorian Italianate building is close to Montpelier’s center, just two blocks behind the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Built as a residence prior to 1873 for a prominent merchant, George W. Scott, the building has been used as an office since the early 1970s.
VHC restored the building, including refinishing floors, repapering walls, improving lighting, painting the façade, installing energy-efficient heating and air systems, and making the first floor handicapped-accessible.
The house is on the National Register of Historic Places. The State Office of Historic Preservation approved and endorsed the renovation. VHC won an award from the Preservation Trust of Vermont for outstanding work preserving Vermont’s architecture.