FLINT, RICHARD B.  This worthy gentleman and veteran landlord came to Railroad street as a pioneer, contemporaneous with the Passumpsic railroad, fifty-two years e ago, when there was only one or two primitive houses here. As a youth he helped plant the acorn, and as a hale and hearty veteran of seventy- eight, he rejoices in the shade of the mighty oak; he sees a long, handsome, prosperous street, with fine residences and magnificent blocks, “arise as by the stroke of an enchanter's wand.” His grandfather, James FLINT, was a soldier of the Revolution, and a pioneer settler in Randolph, who married Jerusha LILLIE. His father, Joel FLINT, fought as a Yankee volunteer at Plattsburg, and was a long time blacksmith in Walden where R. B. was born in 1825. His mother was Hulda HAWES, and he was the youngest and now the only survivor of a family of five children. Mr. FLINT's youth and early manhood was spent in his native town, where he conducted a blacksmith shop, also a shoe shop, and served the town two years as constable and collector. In 1850 Russell HALLETT built on the site of LOUGEE Brothers' and SMYTHE's store, the building which is now occupied by D. FRECHETTE, and in the ground floor of this building R. B. FLINT and L. C. WOODBURY started a grocery store and eating saloon, and were the first merchants on the street. 

      Mr. FLINT also started the first livery stable and the first meat market, and built the slaughter house near Portland street bridge. In 1852 he purchased the Cottage hotel lot, paying for the same a horse, valued at $200. That year he built his house, 22x28 feet, two stories, which he used many years as a residence, but which has since by degrees grown into the Cottage hotel, 50x70 feet, and three stories high. 

      For nearly thirty years Mr. FLINT conducted this hotel, and during this time never sold a glass of liquor to a guest, always maintaining a good table, a good reputation, and a good financial standing, an emphatic refutation of the statement that “a landlord can't make a living unless he sells rum.” Mr. FLINT was widely known as a skilful connaisseur of good horses, and was a good horseman, and has many years exhibited fine roadsters on the fair grounds. During the war he bought, as a government agent, 253 horses, all but one being accepted, and took them on to Washington, everyone arriving in prime condition. He has fitted and sold many good ones at rising prices. In 1857 R. B. FLINT married Marcialine M. HOPKINS of Montpelier, a lady of fine social gifts and a true helpmeet. 

      Two children now living, Willis D. and Ella M. (Mrs. D. C. HORNER of St. Johnsbury). Mr. HORNER is well known in Masonic circles and as a thorough mechanic and the superintendent of the tool department of Fairbanks works.  Mrs. HORNER has resided with her parents, and is favorably known, not only to guests of the Cottage hotel, but as a prominent member and district deputy grand matron of a the Order of the Eastern Star of Vermont. 

      Mr. and Mrs. R. B. FLINT have for many years been esteemed members of the South Congregational church, and have a wide circle of acquaintances and friends. 

Source:  Successful Vermonters, William H. Jeffrey, E. Burke, Vermont, The Historical Publishing Company, 1904, page 40-42. 

Prepared by Tom Dunn January 2003