The Champlain Valley National Heritage Partnership (CVNHP) is nestled between the Adirondacks and the Green Mountains and stretches south to the Mohawk River and connects with the communities along the Richelieu River in Quebec. The national heritage area includes the interconnected waterways of Lake Champlain, Lake George, the Champlain Canal and portions of the Upper Hudson River in Vermont and New York. The region is the ancestral homeland of Algonquin and Iroquois peoples and, over the past 400 years, has played a vital role in the establishment of the United States and Canada. It has served as a route of exploration, military campaigns and maritime commerce. It was the setting for innovations in business and technology, invasions and armed insurrections, new directions in religion and politics, long periods of peace and prosperity, and the beginnings of the conservation movement.
The many stories of our heritage are told in museums, historic sites and natural areas throughout the CVNHP, including high-profile destinations such as the Adirondack Park, Fort Ticonderoga, Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, Green Mountain National Forest, Saratoga National Historical Park, ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center, Shelburne Farms, Shelburne Museum, and the Lake Champlain Underwater Historic Preserves. Scores of smaller museums, historic sites, and parks complement these destinations, providing visitors with an intimate understanding of their particular role in history. Visit our [interactive maps] for links to the hundreds of sites that tell our story.
Through this rich history, the CVNHP region has become a place where new ideas are conceived, innovative products developed and a new appreciation of heritage flourishes. High-tech and entrepreneurial endeavors are cultivated to be part of a business mosaic that includes both manufacturing and traditional agriculture. A burgeoning "local foods" movement provides new directions for sustainable farming; vegetable stands, farmers markets and county fairs are woven into a modern culture.
Lake Champlain and Lake George are major summer recreation destinations. The campsites, hiking trails, and scenic vistas of Vermont and New York state forests and parks—including the 6-million acre Adirondack Park—and the Green Mountain National Forest provide opportunities for solitude and reflection. The hunting and fishing opportunities in the region are exceptional. The 6,729-acre Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge is a crown jewel in the thousands of acres of land within the CVNHP set aside as wildlife sanctuaries, which draw birdwatchers and other nature-lovers.
There are only 49 places designated as national heritage areas (NHA) in the U.S. This designation allows the Lake Champlain Basin Program (LCBP) to provide financial and professional support to communities, museums and organizations that work to interpret and promote our region’s history and culture. Over the past 20 years, the LCBP has promoted interpretation of the Champlain Valley’s natural and cultural treasures in order to build appreciation and improve stewardship of these resources.
While the LCBP traditionally focuses on
the landscape that drains into Lake Champlain, the area of consideration
for the CVNHP includes any historic site or community along the "linked
navigable waterways" of Lake Champlain, Lake George, the Champlain
Canal, and the Upper Hudson River that contains a physical, cultural,
or historical resource that represent the CVNHP’s interpretive
themes. The Vermont and New York counties within the Partnership include
Grand Isle, Franklin, Chittenden, Addison, Rutland, Bennington, Clinton,
Essex, Warren, Saratoga and Washington. (Click map to enlarge.)