Bellows Falls is an incorporated village located in the town of Rockingham in Windham County, Vermont, United States. The population was 3,148 at the 2010 census. Bellows Falls is home to the Green Mountain Railroad, a heritage railroad; the annual Roots on the River Festival; and the No Film Film Festival.
Great Falls was once an important fishing place on the Connecticut River for the nomadic Abenaki tribes, who were part of the Algonquian language family. They caught plentiful salmon and shad. Indigenous peoples had fished at the falls and inhabited the area for thousands of years before European arrival. They carved two sets of faces in the rocks just below the falls (see Bellows Falls Petroglyph Site (VT-WD-8)).
The community was settled in 1753 by colonists of English descent, who called it Great Falls. Later the settlers renamed the town for Colonel Benjamin Bellows, a landowner., but they kept the name Great Falls for the waterfall, a translation of their Abenaki name, "Kitchee pontegu." In 1785, Colonel Enoch Hale built at the falls the first bridge over the Connecticut River. It was the only bridge across the river until 1796, when another was built at Springfield, Massachusetts. The bridge was later replaced.