Use the county business patterns web page provided by Geo Stat to find out about local manufacturing.

http://fisher.lib.virginia.edu/cbp/

Here is an example of what can be done:

1) On the opening page I chose State Level Data for 1998:

 

2) I then chose Vermont as my state and picked a couple of industries that I wanted data on:

3) Next I chose a couple of Variables and the year.  Finally I selected option 1 in under output selection and clicked on submit query:

 

4) And this is what I got:

 

There are many things that you can do with this site you can compare counties in Vermont by selecting county level data in step one:

You can also compare years and from state to state, this site is very useful and has much to offer.