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Swanton is a town in Franklin County, Vermont. The population was 6,427 at the 2010 census. The town includes the village of Swanton.
The town of Swanton was chartered in 1763 as one of the New Hampshire Grants by Benning Wentworth, the governor of the Province of New Hampshire. It was named for Captain William Swanton, an officer in the British Army who had traveled through the area during the French and Indian War.
There were French land grants in the area beginning in 1734, and small French settlements including a Catholic mission in what is now Swanton from as early as 1740, when settlers in Quebec used a water route from Quebec City and Montreal to reach the banks of the Missisquoi River near what are now known as Swanton Falls.
None of the original grantees who received the charter from Governor Wentworth settled or resided in Swanton, opting instead to sell or trade their shares. Because of its proximity to the border with New France, and later the Province of Quebec, it was not populated by anyone from the British colonies in the 1760s and 1770s, the newly independent United States in the 1770s and 1780s, or the Vermont Republic in the early 1780s. As late as 1786, Ira Allen owned 59 of the original 64 shares.
In 2013, human artifacts dating from 7,000 years ago were found near the Missisquoi River, including a Neville-type stone object that might have been attached to a spear.
Swanton is located in western Franklin County, bordered on the west by Lake Champlain and Grand Isle County.
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