Home Commentary Then and Now, Nov. 15, 2023

Then and Now, Nov. 15, 2023

The Rialto Building at 32–40 State Street occupies a unique position in downtown Montpelier; it straddles the North Branch without the benefit of a basement! The first mention of a building called the Rialto in local newspapers was in 1863. That building was destroyed, along with most of the downtown, by fire in March 1875. The second Rialto Block, shown here as a brand-new building, was completed in just seven months but succumbed to a spectacular fire in 1911, during which it fell into the river. The current five bay, three-story building was completed in 1915 and lacks the architectural exuberance of its predecessor.