Founded as a coeducational institution in 1834, Green Mountain has a long and rich history. It became a two-year college for women in 1943 when World War II altered the composition of the student body. In 1974, it returned to coeducational status, offering four-year baccalaureate degrees to both men and women. Though historically tied to the United Methodist Church, the College community now reflects a vital respect for spiritual values, individual conscience, and interfaith dialogue.
The Village of Poultney was chartered in 1761 and named for Lord William Poultney (1684-1764), the Earl of Bath, whose coat of arms is incorporated within the College seal. Ethan Allen, leader of the famed Green Mountain Boys, and his brothers owned land in the area and many of the early settlers participated in the capture of Fort Ticonderoga in 1775. One of Vermont’s first libraries and the oldest union church were established in Poultney.
Two of the most famous names in American journalism are closely connected with the community. Horace Greeley, founder of the New York Herald Tribune, lived here during the 1820s while learning the printing trade at the Northern Spectator. The Eagle Tavern, where he resided and the district school where he delivered his first political speech still stand. George Jones, co-founder and editor of the New York Times, was born and raised in Poultney. The memory of these two distinguished men is perpetuated through the Two Editors Inn, the College's guest house opposite the main entrance to campus.