Governors’ addresses offer fascinating views into the interests and styles of particular governors. More importantly, in their aggregate they document how Vermonters have defined and resolved the continuing issues of governance over time. Most concern financial conditions, taxation, education, transportation, economic development, and state institutions and agencies. Governors often expounded on what they saw as core Vermont values and how they should be promoted and preserved.
Until 1870 Vermont had annual elections with an inaugural each year. With the adoption of two-year terms in 1870, inaugurals were offered every other year, as the legislature usually only met in the first year of the biennium. From 1870 until 1928, an informal tradition limited governors to a single two-year term; from 1928 until 1962, most governors served two two-year terms. Since the 1960s, serving three or more terms have become common. The inaugural and farewell addresses here are searchable by keyword.
Budget messages began in 1941 and state of the state addresses were offered during the adjourned sessions starting in 1970. A selection of these addresses were been scanned and are now available here, but they have not yet been transcribed and are not keyword searchable.