History

A Brief History of  The Soldiers' Home of Vermont

The original estate that houses Vermont Veterans' Home was constructed in 1860. In 1884, recognizing the need to care for veterans disabled in the Civil War, the State General Assembly appointed Trustees of a Soldiers’ Home and authorized a $10,000 appropriation as initial funding. The first of twenty-five residents was admitted on May 18, 1887. On April 14, 1971, the Soldiers’ Home was renamed the Vermont Veterans’ Home.

Construction of a cemetery began in 1884 with one acre devoted to the burial of Civil War veterans. Expanded to 17 acres, and containing about 300 gravesites, burial is now restricted to residents of the VVH.

Significant capital construction began in the 1960’s including renovation of the administration building, residential areas, and dining room, and construction of new nursing care units, a chapel, social hall, gazebo, and bandstand. 

In the past several years, other significant additions and renovations occurred, including a geothermal system for heating and cooling, and renovation of four residential units, and development of a memorial area which includes monuments dedicated to Vermont Medal of Honor winners, Gold Star Mothers, and Vermont Veterans. Lighting systems, electronic controls, and information systems have been updated.

 

 

For a complete and updated history please email Mary Ryan or call 802-447-6523.

Commandants and Administrators

  • Col. Robert J. Coffey - May 1, 1887 - July 16, 1901
  • Col. Thomas Hannon - July 17, 1901 - February 1, 1917
  • Col. George P. Martin - February 28, 1917 - July 21, 1927
  • Lt. Col. Arthur S. Martin - July 22, 1927 - October 10, 1929
  • Col. John W. Tinker - October 11, 1929 - July 9, 1937
  • Brig. Gen. Reginald W. Buzzell - July 10, 1937 - July 9, 1941
  • Lt. Col. Edward A. Tobin - July 10, 1941 - January 18, 1946
  • Brig. Gen. Reginald W. Buzzell - January 19, 1946 - October 4, 1950
  • Brig. Gen. Alexander J. Smith - October 5, 1950 - May 27, 1951
  • Col. Lyndon H. Arnold - May 28, 1951 - December 14, 1958
  • Brig. Gen. Edward H. Giles - December 15, 1958 - January 24, 1977
  • CWO John E. Ahearn - January 25, 1977 - February 18, 1986
  • Contracted to Marlin Management for interim period - April 4, 1986 - September 8, 1986
  • Lt. Phillip M. Peterson - September 8, 1986 - May 4, 1990
  • Col. Elmer C. Rieckhoff - October 9, 1990 - July 11, 1997
  • Col. Louis J. DeFelice - July 11, 1997 - March 8, 1999
  • Contracted to Subacute of America - March 8, 1999 - August 1, 1999
  • Earle R. Hollings, II - August 1, 1999 – February 1, 2005
  • Contracted for interim period - February 2, 2005 – June 26, 2005
  • Colleen Lurie Rundell, M.S., LNHA - June 27, 2005 - September, 17 2010
  • Contracted for interim period - September, 18 2010 - January, 2 2011
  • Melissa A. Jackson, BSW, LNHA - January, 3 2011

 

Contact Information

Vermont Veterans’ Home
325 North Street
Bennington, VT 05201            
Phone: 802-447-6510
Email the Admission Department