Seeing Vermont takes you to a different part of the Green Mountain State, showcasing its scenery, buildings and people.
This week’s location: Norton
Where it’s located: Found in the Northeast Kingdom, Norton is in the northwest corner of Essex County and has a sign for the 45th Parallel – marking the midway point between the equator and the North Pole. VT Route 114 runs north through the middle of town before turning east at the Canadian border. Norton is about 75 miles directly and about a 2.5-hour drive to the northeast of the Burlington area.
About the area: While fairly large in land area with 39.6 square miles, Norton is small in population with just 169 people being counted in the 2010 census – that being down from the 214 that were counted in 2000. That leaves for plenty of forest and natural areas to visit such as the Black Turn Brook State Forest – formerly known as Earth People’s Park.
Earth People’s Park was a 592-acre piece of land which served as a nonprofit from 1970-94 and gave way for anyone who wanted to live there for free the chance to do so. According to the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, it’s estimated that there were 25 year-round residents living in the area between 1973-75 in shelters such as tee-pees, school buses, and an eight-sided log cabin. The land was then turned over to the State of Vermont by the U.S. Marshalls in 1994 and was established as the Black Turn Brook State Forest.
Here are some photos of Norton you might enjoy, courtesy of Josh Kessler who’s a native Vermonter and currently the director of athletic communications at Saint Michael’s College: