Rutland Civil War Driving / Walking Tour
The Ripley Opera House
No Rutland family contributed to the town and to the war effort more than the Ripleys.
The patriarch William Y. Ripley, as owner of the Ripley Marble Company, was a leading employer spanning the war years. His wife Jane Betsy Ripley served as the organizer and leader of the Rutland County branch of the U. S. Sanitary Commission.
William Y. W. Ripley served as a company commander in the 1st Vermont Regiment and also in the 1st U. S. Sharpshooters. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his bravery and leadership at the Battle of Malvern Hill. (More on William Y. W. Ripley in the Fairgrounds stop of this tour.) Edward H. Ripley was a Brevet General and was the commanding officer of the unit which assumed military control of the city of Richmond upon its surrender. A third brother, Charles, also served (12th Vermont Infantry).
The Ripley Opera House was funded and built by William Y. Ripley in 1868. It served as a cultural center in the city throughout the ensuing years. The building burned a few years after was built, and was rebuilt by William Y. Ripley in 1882.
To learn more about the Opera House, watch our Moment in History.
To learn more about the Ripley Family, read our Quarterly.
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