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The Conception of the Vermont State Bird and Flower

The Conception of the Vermont State Bird and Flower

The introduction of state symbols for the state bird of Vermont has had a lot to do with various women’s groups, such as the Vermont Federated Women’s Clubs who helped choose and publicize the state bord of the state. Chosen for there proliferation throughout the 14 counties of the state the Vermont legislature adopted the Red Clover as the state flower and the Hermit Thrush as the state bird.


On February 1st 1895 an act of the Vermont state legislature was passed into law that decpared the state flower to be the Red Clover, or tritolium pratense. The state legislature had sourced a flower that was present throughout the state and reflected the common farming industries of Vermont. A three leaved purple flower is a common sight around Vermont’s countryside and urban areas, where it grows on roadsides; under the act of the state legislature the red clover is determined to reflect the farming industry, which is important to the economy of the state. Red clover is often grown by farmers, specifically dairy farmers who use the purple flowers as grazing food for their cattle. The only debate about the use of the red clover as the state flower was caused by the fact the flower is not native to the state, but was brought to the U.S. by European settlers who began the use of the flower in Vermont as farm animal food.


Unlike the choice of the red clover, which was supported by the majority of the residents of the state the decision to choose the Hermit Thrush as the state bird was controversial. Initially chosen by the Vermont Federated Women’s Clubs as the state bird the small, six inches long bird only spends the Spring to Fall in the state before migrating to warmer climates for the Winter.


Many members of the state legislature put forward other birds that spent the majority of the year in Vernmont as the state’s symbol; included in the other choices were the Blue Jay and Crow. Despite the Women’s Clubs choosing the Thrush as the state bird in 1927 the state legislature did not back the choice until June 1941 when an Act of the legislature was passed. Although the bird is found in all 14 counties of the state the nature of the bird to hide from public view did not make it a popular choice for state bird. The Women’s Clubs of Vermont stated the beautiful call of the Hermit Thrush was one of the major reasons it was chosen as a state symbol.