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DAR State Park

Birding in Vermont

DAR State Park
Addison, Vermont 05491
DAR State Park webpage
DAR State Park map and guide

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Addison County

DAR State Park
Coordinates: 44.0545617, -73.4163478
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Tips for birding DAR State Park
Birdwatching in Vermont, p. 69.

The AllTrails website has a description and map of a hike on the Nature Trail at DAR State Park.

About DAR State Park
With its picturesque location on the shores of Lake Champlain, DAR State Park provides an ideal setting for anyone seeking a relaxing day visit or an overnight respite. A quiet park, it is popular for its large, open campground, grassy picnic areas, and stone pavilion. It is also a favorite spot for birdwatchers.

Located in the contemporary rural agricultural community of Addison, the area is one of the earliest and most intensely settled parts of Vermont, with evidence of human habitation dating back over 7,500 years. Native Americans regularly used the greater Chimney Point area for camping, hunting, and fishing (and later, village settlements) for as long as 7,000 years until Euro-American settlers arrived.

This area is thought to be the site of the first permanent Euro-American agricultural settlements in Vermont. In 1731, The French constructed a fort at Chimney Point to prevent the British advance up the Champlain Valley. Sieur Gilles Hocquart, Intendant of New France, was granted a large seigneury by the King of France in 1743. Seigneuries, or land grants, were issued to encourage settlement and cultivation and to maintain a strong presence against British encroachment. The Hocquart Seigneury included Ft. St. Frédéric, built in 1734, (now called Crown Point) on the western shore of Lake Champlain and land along the eastern shore, including what is now Chimney Point and the park. In 1759, the French evacuated Hocquart Seigneury, including Ft. St. Frédéric, and fled to Canada in response to pressure from the British. Historical accounts say the British blew up Ft. St. Frédéric and burned the French dwellings, leaving nothing but chimneys standing, giving Chimney Point its name.

After the English won control of the area in 1760, English settlers began to arrive and build homesteads. John Strong is believed to have built a cabin on top of a former French home site. The foundation is visible just north of the park picnic pavilion. The Strong’s cabin was burned in 1790 by loyalist British forces; at that time they decided to build the imposing brick mansion near the park entrance. The Daughters of the American Revolution purchased the property in 1934 and turned it into a museum depicting early colonial life. In 1955, they donated 95 acres to the State for the creation of DAR State Park.
From DAR State Park webpage