Montpelier is a city in the U.S. state of Vermont that serves as the state capital and the shire town (county seat) of Washington County. Colonel Davis selected the name Montpelier after the French city Montpellier.Montpelier is located among foothills to the east of the Green Mountains.
The town flourished into a center for manufacturing, mainly after the Vermont Central Railroad opened in Montpelier on June 20, 1849—the same year East Montpelier was set off as a separate town. Falls on the Winooski River provided water power for mills. There was an iron foundry.Today, government, higher education, insurance and tourism are principal businesses.Since the city's establishment as capital in 1805 the primary business in Montpelier has been government, and by the mid-nineteenth century government and life and fire insurance.Located in Montpelier are the New England Culinary Institute, the annual Green Mountain Film Festival and the headquarters of several insurance companies. The majority of businesses in the downtown area was mostly retail industry,which are locally owned.