Vermont Legislature Joint Resolution December 11, 1935
Whereas, the Old First Church of Bennington wasorganized December 3, 1762, and is the Oldest Church within the present limits of Vermont; and
Whereas, our forefathers met in Prayer in the FirstMeeting House for assistance against the oppressivemeasures of New York and the overwhelming power ofKing George, and to the First Meeting House returnedfrom the capture of Fort Ticonderoga, the Battle ofBennington, the surrender of Burgoyne to offer uptheir Thanksgiving; and
Whereas, in the first Meeting House of Benningtonthe Legislature of Vermont met on eight separateoccasions, and the laws for carrying on the Government of this sovereign state were enacted at the Meeting House on February 11, 1779; and the convention, consisting of one Delegate from each Town, Held in Bennington on January 10, 1791, ratified the Constitution of the United States by the signatures of 105 out of 109 Delegates, thereby preparing the way for the admission of Vermont into the Union as the first state after the Original Thirteen; and
Whereas, the burial ground, surrounding the aforementioned church structure is the first and oldestcemetery in the state, where lie the remains of fiveGovernors of Vermont, seventy-five Revolutionary Soldiers, the author of Vermont's Declaration of Independence, the founder of the Vermont Gazette,the Patriots who fell at the Battle of Bennington,The Hessian prisoners who died of their wounds in the First Meeting House converted into a temporaryhospital, together with scores of others who laboredfor the stability and prosperity of Vermont; now,therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:
That the aforesaid Bennington Center Cemeteryand the aforementioned First Church Building arehereby Declared to be Vermont's Colonial Shrine
forthe preservation of the sacred memories and traditionsof Colonial Days, in order that our children's children may cherish the great deeds of our fathers and build on the foundations laid by them the commonwealth of the future.