Vermont's little 'big' city stakes its claim to distinction

Montpelier, Vt., is not just the only state capital without a McDonald's outlet, it also is the only city in America with a still-operating clothespin factory. That's a reflection of an industrial past that dates to 1805, when Montpelier (pop. 8,000) was named the capital of the Green Mountain State. No state capital is smaller, and even when Montpelier is linked to its larger north-central "twin," Barre, the two are said to form a "micropolitan area." Today, Vermont's insurance industry is based in Montpelier, whose downtown is on the National Register of Historic Places and is recognized as one of the nation's top 100 art towns. The smallest state capitals and their populations:

  • 1. Montpelier, Vt. 8,003
  • 2. Pierre, S.D. 14,052
  • 3. Augusta, Maine 18,626
  • 4. Frankfort, Ky. 27,210
  • 5. Helena, Mont. 27,383
  • 6. Juneau, Alaska 30,737
  • 7. Dover, Del. 34,288
  • 8. Annapolis, Md. 36,300
  • 9. Jefferson City, Mo. 39,062
  • 10. Concord, N.H. 42,336

– US Bureau of the Census

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