A large sign out front, bearing the sepia-toned visage of a 19th-century Union soldier, makes an earnest plea to passing motorists: "Help save my house!
" This weathered structure was once the home of Vermont's most important Civil War hero: George Jerrison Stannard (1820–1886). native may not be a household name, but few historians dispute Stannard's critical role in shaping the course of the Battle of Gettysburg and, hence, the outcome of the war.
As Kaigle wryly noted about a TV antenna sticking from the roof, "Stannard got really good reception out here." The interior isn't any better.
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Much of the home's exterior dates to its last occupant, Raymond Sanderson, who lived and farmed there from the mid-1900s until his death in 1988.
Sanderson added the garage, which would be demolished if the house was saved.
"It's all been on the table." Why was such an important figure in Vermont history ignored for so long?
Coffin, a Woodstock native, pointed out that he was never taught anything in school about Stannard or his role in the war.As Montpelier historian and author Howard Coffin told an audience at the Pennsylvania battlefield on its 150th anniversary: "Vermont won the Battle of Gettysburg with Stannard's flank attack on Pickett's Charge." As Coffin later recalled, no one ever challenged that bold claim.