Area served as early thoroughfare for traveling Indian tribes.1 French explored area, 1609, and erected fort on island in Lake Champlain, 1666.2 First settled by Massachusetts emigrants, 1724.3 Claimed by British colonies of New York and New Hampshire, but during American revolution, area declared independence as Republic of Vermont, 15 Jan. 1777; admitted to U.S. as fourteenth state, 4 Mar. 1791.4 Population in 1810 about 220,000; in 1820 about 240,000; and in 1840 about 290,000.5 Birthplace of JS, 23 Dec. 1805.6 By 1835, six branches of LDS church established in state, with about 120 members.7