Was a small Vermont town on Hitler's hit list?

"It does make you feel like you were part of something that must have been great if one of the most evil people in the world wanted to get rid of it."

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December 16, 2016 03:56
1 minute read.
Springfield, VT.

Black River and falls in Springfield, VT c. 1910.. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

 
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Many small towns have their claims to fame, but Springfield, Vermont has an odd one.

"We were on Hitler's bombing list as a top ten, is what I heard it was," said one resident in Slate Roof Films' new mini-documentary, No 7 on the List.


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No 7 on the List from Slate Roof Films on Vimeo.

Springfield was once a major industrial town, channeling its river to power mills and munitions factories, making major contributions to America's effort in World War II. This made it a likely target should Germany have managed to bomb American cities.

"It's almost like a bragging point," one interviewee laughed. "Hitler was gonna bomb us, so we were something! It does make you feel like you were part of something that must have been great if one of the most evil people in the world wanted to get rid of it."

After the war, the machine tool industry wound down with lack of demand, and the factories left Springfield, leaving the town to reinvent itself or crumble.

Lacking an original document but awash with secondary references in books and magazines to a fabled list of targets featuring Springfield, residents still debate their exact ranking and the nature of the list. Was it truly a German list, or was it an American prediction of Germany's intentions? Was Springfield number seven or number four?

"Never heard who one through six was," said one resident with a chuckle.


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