In Order to Form a More Perfect Union: John Dickinson, James Madison and the United States Constitution

As an early celebration of Constitution Day on September 17, the Delaware Public Archives will present a special program about the United States Constitution on Saturday, September 5, 10:30 a.m. at the Archives. Presented by Henry J. Foresman, Jr. this program will explore how both James Madison and John Dickinson, in their own way, helped shape the Constitution and our early republic. While James Madison is remembered as the father of our Constitution, many forget the contributions of John Dickinson, who after Madison may have been the most learned scholar of government and politics from antiquity to the age of the American Revolution.

Henry J. Foresman, Jr. is a retired Colonel in the United States Army, having served 33 years on active duty. He is now Director of the Washington Office of the Third Army and has served in his current position at the Pentagon since May 2012. His responsibilities include the coordination and interaction with Department of Defense and Army Staff and Agencies on behalf of the Commanding General Third Army. Other major responsibilities include the Administration of Office; Budget Management; and Congressional interaction.

The program is free to the public and will last approximately one hour. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail thomas.summers@delaware.gov.

The Delaware Public Archives is located at 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard North in Dover. The Mabel Lloyd Ridgely Research Room is open to the public Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. On the second Saturday of every month the research room is open from 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.


Looking for Your 18th Century Ancestors in Rural America

(Dover, DE) On Saturday, August 1 at 10:30 a.m., Kim Bucklaw of the Chester County Archives and Chester County Historical Society will present a program at the Delaware Public Archives about searching for one’s ancestors in 18th century rural America. This program will show how to use timelines along with a variety of records (taxes, deeds, court records etc.) to solve family mysteries. Effectively placing your ancestors in time and location using these alternative methods and sources can be an invaluable skill for family researchers. This workshop will have information for genealogists of all skill levels.

With more than 12 years of research experience, Kim Bucklaw currently serves as the Assistant Archivist and the primary genealogical researcher for the Chester County Archives and Chester County Historical Society in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Ms. Bucklaw has a master’s degree in American History from Temple University and holds certification from the Academy of Certified Archivists.

The workshop is free to the public and will last approximately one hour. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Sarah Denison (302) 744-5016 or e-mail sarah.denison@delaware.gov.

For more information about the Delaware Public Archives or to learn more about events and other items of interest at the Archives:
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The Delaware Public Archives is located at 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard North in Dover. The Mabel Lloyd Ridgely Research Room is open to the public Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. On the second Saturday of every month the research room is open from 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

The Delaware Public Archives (DPA, archives.delaware.gov), an agency of the State of Delaware, is one of the oldest public archives programs in the United States. DPA serves the citizens of Delaware by identifying, collecting, and preserving public records of enduring historical and evidential value; ensuring access to public records for present and future generations; and advising and educating interested parties in the creation, management, use, and preservation of public records.


Delaware Public Archives to Celebrate July 4th with “Flags on the Moon” Program

(Dover, DE) On Saturday, July 4, 1:00 p.m. the Delaware Public Archives will celebrate the holiday with a special program titled “Flags on the Moon.” Presented at the Delaware Public Archives in Dover by local author and former NASA engineer Jack Clemons, this program marks the 46th year anniversary of the moment when Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong stepped out onto the lunar surface to become the first human being to set foot on another world. Apollo 11 was the first of six Apollo spacecraft to land on the moon. From these six missions, a total of twelve men walked on the lunar surface. Beyond the exploration and the scientific experiments they carried out, each Apollo crew planted an American flag at their landing site. The flags are still there, perpetual monuments to the imagination, resourcefulness and determination of the human spirit. As this program will reveal, each of these flags has a story to tell.

Jack Clemons was an industry engineer and team leader on NASA’s Apollo and Space Shuttle Programs in Houston, Texas. He later served as a Lockheed Martin executive and led engineering teams that designed air traffic control systems for the United States and the United Kingdom. An author, his non-fiction and short stories have appeared in numerous magazines, books and anthologies. He has given talks across the mid-Atlantic region on the Apollo Moon Program, the design and first flights of the NASA Space Shuttle, and the subject of “Why Science Matters.” He has also appeared in the “Command Module” segment of “Moon Machines,” the Discovery Science Channel’s award winning six-part documentary about the Apollo Program. He writes a bi-weekly space and science blog for Amazing Stories Online Magazine.

The program is free to the public and will last approximately one hour. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail thomas.summers@delaware.gov.

The Delaware Public Archives is located at 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard North in Dover. The Mabel Lloyd Ridgely Research Room is open to the public Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. On the second Saturday of every month the research room is open from 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.


How Do I Start My Family Tree?

(Dover, DE) Are you ready to put together your family’s genealogy? On Saturday, June 6 at 10:30 a.m., professional genealogist Sydney F. Cruice Dixon will present a program at the Delaware Public Archives on how to begin your family tree. This presentation will provide an excellent starting point for researching your genealogical roots. This workshop will look at the top 100 genealogy websites and teach which historical records can reveal the most about your family’s past. Participants will learn proven methods to root out their most elusive ancestors, and how they can continue to develop new genealogy research skills on their own.

Sydney F. Cruice Dixon is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists. She has been actively researching family genealogies since 1995. In addition to conducting research and providing genealogical coaching, Dixon currently teaches both beginner and intermediate level genealogy courses. She also lectures regularly throughout the tri-state area. One of Dixon’s particular areas of specialization is United States military records. She is also a member of the planning committee for the Main Line Genealogy Club in the Philadelphia area.

The workshop is free to the public and will last approximately one hour. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail thomas.summers@delaware.gov.

The Delaware Public Archives is located at 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard North in Dover. The Mabel Lloyd Ridgely Research Room is open to the public Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. On the second Saturday of every month the research room is open from 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.


“Behind the Scenes” Tours of the Delaware Public Archives are Now Available in Spanish

On April 1, 2015 the Delaware Public Archives (DPA) was honored by a visit from members of the Delaware Hispanic Commission to help launch the “Behind the Scenes” Spanish speaking tour series. “This ‘Behind the Scenes’ tour in Spanish is one of several Archives’ initiatives recognizing the growing influence of the Hispanic community in the First State’s history and culture,” said State Archivist and Archives Director Stephen M. Marz. In addition, Marz stated that “if you were born, married, or attended public school in Delaware, eventually the Delaware Public Archives will receive the documents that record these important events. With new records coming into the Archives on a weekly basis, it is important that the First State’s Hispanic residents be informed that we are one of the state’s most important resources for historical research and vital statistical information.”

“It is an honor for the members of the Commission to represent all the Hispanic residents at the first ‘Behind the Scenes’ tour in Spanish at the Delaware Public Archives,” said Javier Torrijos, chair of the Delaware Hispanic Commission. “This effort is evidence of the impact of the Hispanic community’s contribution and involvement in programs and services develop by Delaware’s state agencies.”

The tours in Spanish of this remarkable facility offer visitors a rare opportunity to learn more about the role of the DPA, and see how the Archives preserves and protects the records that are important to every Delawarean. Archives’ Director Marz notes that “many people who have toured the Archives are surprised by the amount of documents and photographs that are stored at the facility. Because the Delaware Public Archives serves as the official government repository for state, county and local government records, we are well known as a valuable resource for researchers, genealogists, and historians.” Part of the tour will included a viewing of the new display honoring African American Genealogy research in Delaware. Tours of the Delaware Public Archives are free to the public but reservations are required. Please contact Tom Summers, thomas.summers@delaware.gov, (302) 744-5047, for more information about tours.