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I should say that the earliest reference that I have found was 1857.
Source: Charles K. Field, letter from [George W. Grandey], 6 Feb. 1857.

But something that someone else found trumped that date but I can't 
remember who or when.

First documented proof of an earlier date wins a free tour of the 
Archives.

Sylvia Bugbee
<[log in to unmask]>

On Mon, 21 Jul 2008, Kristin Peterson-Ishaq wrote:

> My grandmother worked as a waitress in about 1900 at Queen City Park
>
> (or something like that). And I think I recall seeing a postmark with  Queen 
> City.
>
> Robert H. Rodgers
> Lyman-Roberts Professor of Classical Languages and Literature
> University of Vermont
> Classics Department
> 481 Main Street, Burlington VT 05405-0218
>
> Director, Center for Research on Vermont
>
>
>
> Quoting Kristin Peterson-Ishaq <[log in to unmask]>:
>
>> Hi--
>> 
>> I am forwarding below a query to crvnet from Sylvia Bugbee.
>> 
>> Thank you for your attention.
>> 
>> Sincerely,
>> Kristin Peterson-Ishaq
>> 
>> 
>> ---Forwarded Message---
>> 
>> I'm trying to nail down when Burlington was first called the Queen City.
>> 
>> I know that it's probably been sent over the list before, but I think
>> no one solved the question.  Could you put the question out on the list?
>> 
>> Many thanks,
>> Sylvia Bugbee
>> <[log in to unmask]>
>> 
>> ---End of Forwarded Message---
>