City Incorporated: April 1, 1921
Area: 8,887 Acres / 1.39 Square Miles [ 254* ]
Coordinates (Geographic Center): 73°11'W 44°29'N
Altitude ASL: 200 feet
Population (US Census, 2000): 6,561 [ 19* ]
Population Density (persons per square mile): 4,720.1 [ 1* ]
Tax Rate: $2.057 ('03)
Equalized Value: $323,946,291 ('03)
*Area, Population and Density rankings above refer to Winooski's relative position among Vermont's 255 civic entities (9 cities, 242 towns, 4 gores and grants).
The name comes from the Abenaki for "wild onions", plentiful along the river. The earliest European documentation offering a written approximation of the native word are French-made maps, which identify the river as "Ouinousqui".
In the southeast corner of Colchester was a fine natural falls in the Winooski (then Onion or French) River (more River info here) where Ira Allen, one of the grantees of Colchester, built grain and lumber mills in about 1772. To protect their interests from marauding French and Indians, he and his cousin Remember Baker built a two-story palisaded enclosure which they called Fort Frederick. Good land nearby attracted settlers, and the community which grew up around the mills and the fort became known as Allen's Settlement, later as Winooski Falls, then simply Winooski when it was incorporated as a civil entity separate from Colchester.
The large number of French Canadians who came to work in the textile mills in later years resulted in a portion of the city being referred to as French Village. Even today, there is a large enough French-speaking population in the area that the local cable TV system absolutely must carry two French stations out of Montreal.
Information courtesy of: www.virtualvermont.com