Fourth graders’ Delaware Day projects on display at Legislative Hall in Dover from Nov. 13–Dec. 12, 2019

(DOVER, Del.—Nov. 6, 2019)—Delaware fourth-grade students will showcase their knowledge of the U.S. Constitution and Delaware’s role in the founding of the nation in a series of creative displays on view from Nov. 13 to Dec. 12, 2019 at Legislative Hall, located at 411 Legislative Ave. in Dover, Del. The home of Delaware’s General Assembly, Legislative Hall is open to the public Mondays through Fridays, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission is free but visitors must pass through a security checkpoint at the entrance to the building. For additional information on the competition, call 302-608-5328. For additional information about visiting Legislative Hall, call 302-744-4114.

Detail from Bunker Hill Elementary School’s display from last year’s Delaware Day Fourth Grade Competition
Detail from Bunker Hill Elementary School’s display from last year’s Delaware Day Fourth Grade Competition

Delaware Day commemorates the anniversary of Delaware becoming the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution on Dec. 7, 1787. Six months later, on June 21, 1788, New Hampshire became the ninth state to ratify the document thereby providing the two-thirds majority of the states needed to establish the Constitution as the law of the land.

Sponsored annually by Delaware’s secretary of state, the Delaware Day Fourth Grade Competition encourages students to study the Constitution and to discover Delaware’s role in its writing and ratification. Students’ observations are presented in a panel-display format that incorporates prose, artwork, songs and political cartoons. Each display is reviewed for historical accuracy, spelling, creativity and artistic merit.

A ceremony honoring the 2019 participants in the competition will be held on Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019 at 10 a.m. at the Delaware Public Archives building located at 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Dover, Del. Admission is free.

The 2019 Delaware Day Fourth Grade Competition was planned and organized by the Delaware Department of State’s Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs in cooperation with representatives of Delaware Public Archives and the Division of the Arts. Several Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs employees served as judges for the history competition while employees of the Division of the Arts judged the entries on their artistic merits.

The Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs is an agency of the State of Delaware. The division enhances Delaware’s quality of life by preserving the state’s unique historical heritage, fostering community stability and economic vitality and providing educational programs and assistance to the general public on Delaware history. The division’s diverse array of services includes operation of five museums which are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, administration of the State Historic Preservation Office, conservation of the state’s archaeological and historic-objects collections, operation of a conference center and management of historic properties across the state. Primary funding for division programs and services is provided by annual appropriations from the Delaware General Assembly and grants from the National Park Service, Department of the Interior, a federal agency. However, the contents and opinions expressed in the division’s programs and services do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Department of the Interior.

Picture of the Logo of the American Alliance of Museums logo

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Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-739-7787
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov


Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs to sponsor 10 special events during November 2019

(DOVER, Del.—Oct. 23, 2019)—During the month of November 2019, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be sponsoring 10 special programs at the museums of the State of Delaware. A full schedule is included below. Unless otherwise indicated, all programs are free and open to the public.

Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs special events, November 2019

Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019
“Some Like Classical.” Guided tours examine some of Victor Records’ earliest recordings of classical music played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. First Saturday in the First State program. Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3262.

Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019
“18th Century Market Fair.” Programs explore an era when The Green served as the focal point of life in Dover as historical interpreters explore the goods, wares and political attitudes of the 1700s. The Old State House will celebrate the fair with special tours and 18th-century-style demonstrations. First Saturday in the First State event sponsored by the First State Heritage Park. The Green, Dover. Programs 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5054.

Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019
“Pocket to Petticoats.” Presentation on Colonial clothing by Sharyn Murray, retired Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter. Part one of the four-part lecture series, “Seams From the Past.” Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations for the lecture are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Nov. 1, 2019.

Friday, Nov. 8, 2019
Concert by Lori Citro. Singer/songwriter/pianist presented in partnership with the Delaware Friends of Folk and the First State Heritage Park. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. 7:30 p.m. 302-744-5054.

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
“Veterans Walking Tours.” Brian Cannon, lead interpreter for the New Castle Court House Museum, will lead walking tours highlighting New Castle soldiers’ graves from the Revolutionary War through the Vietnam War, and relating little-known stories of these exceptional veterans. Presented by the New Castle Court House Museum. Tours depart at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. from Immanuel Episcopal Church, 100 Harmony St., New Castle. Free admission but reservations are requested by calling 302-323-4453.

Photo of the graveyard of Immanuel Episcopal Church
The graveyard of Immanuel Episcopal Church will be one of the sites visited during the “Veterans Walking Tours” on Nov. 9, 2019. Tours will visit grave sites of notable New Castle veterans from America’s wars.

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
Demonstrations by the Thistledown Fiber Arts Guild. Program explores spinning, weaving, knitting and other fabric arts. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 1–3 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
“A Stitch in History: Cross Stitch for Beginners.” Workshop by Madeline Golden, Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter. Part two of the four-part lecture series, “Seams From the Past.” Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Admission fee of $10 includes materials for visitors to create their own cross stitch. Due to space restrictions, reservations for the workshop are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Nov. 2, 2019.

Monday, Nov. 11, 2019
Veterans Day. The following museums of the State of Delaware will be open: The Johnson Victrola Museum and The Old State House, open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; the John Dickinson Plantation, open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. The New Castle Court House Museum and the Zwaanendael Museum, closed. 302-744-5054.

Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019
Bayberry candle workshops. Programs examine bayberries and their use in creating bayberry candles. Presented in partnership with the St. Jones Reserve. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Workshops to take place from 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. and 1:30–3:30 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations for the workshop are required by calling 302-739-3277 no later than Nov. 15, 2019.

Photo of hand-dipped candles at the John Dickinson Plantation
Hand-dipped candles at the John Dickinson Plantation. Bayberry-candle-making workshops will be offered on Nov. 16, 2019.

Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019
Dutch-American Heritage Day. Celebrate the anniversary of Nov. 16, 1776 when an American warship sailed into the harbor of the Dutch island of St. Eustatius in the West Indies and was greeted by a friendly salute, the first ever given by a foreign power to the flag of the newly-independent United States. Activities will include “A Stitch in History: Cross Stitch for Beginners and Intermediate,” a workshop by Madeline Golden, Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter. Part three of the four-part lecture series, “Seams From the Past.” Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Cross stitch program at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Admission fee for workshop is $10 which includes materials for visitors to create their own cross stitch. Due to space restrictions, reservations for the workshop are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Nov. 9, 2019.

Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019
“History A-Dressed.” A study of fashion and textiles from the Colonial era to the Victorian era by Abigail Davis, Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter. Final segment of the four-part lecture series, “Seams From the Past.” Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations for the lecture are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Nov. 22, 2019.

Photo of Abigail Davis
Abigail Davis will be conducting the program, “History A-Dressed on Nov. 23, 2019.

Thursday, Nov. 28, 2019
Thanksgiving Day. All museums of the State of Delaware (the John Dickinson Plantation, the Johnson Victrola Museum, the New Castle Court House Museum, The Old State House and the Zwaanendael Museum) will be closed. 302-744-5054.

Friday, Nov. 29, 2019
Day After Thanksgiving. All museums of the State of Delaware will be open: The Johnson Victrola Museum and The Old State House, open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; the John Dickinson Plantation, New Castle Court House Museum and the Zwaanendael Museum, open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5054.

Exhibits and displays, November 2019

In addition to special programming, the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs is sponsoring the following exhibits and displays. Admission is free and open to the public:

Nov. 13–Dec. 12, 2019
Delaware Day Competition Display.” Works by participants in the Delaware Department of State’s 18th annual Delaware Day Fourth Grade Competition which challenges students to illustrate and explain the U.S. Constitution and the role played by Delawareans in the writing and ratification of the nation’s founding document. Legislative Hall, 411 Legislative Ave., Dover. Mon.–Fri., 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but passage through security checkpoint required. 302-744-4114.

Detail from Bunker Hill Elementary School’s display from last year’s Delaware Day Fourth Grade Competition.
Detail from Bunker Hill Elementary School’s display from last year’s Delaware Day Fourth Grade Competition.

Ongoing
Delaware Railroads: Elegant Travel and Timely Transport.” Exhibit explores the history of rail travel and transport in the First State emphasizing the New Castle and Frenchtown Railroad (1832), the Delaware Railroad (1852), the Junction and Breakwater Railroad (1857) and the Queen Anne’s Railroad (1896). Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Nov. 1–March 31: Wed.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. April 1–Oct. 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. 302-645-1148.

Ongoing
Drawing America to Victory: The Persuasive Power of the Arts in World War I.” Online exhibit revolves around 27 World War I posters from the collections of the State of Delaware.

Ongoing
Five Stories.” Display explores the varied lives of people who lived on the plantation including Dickinson family members, tenant farmers, tradesmen, free blacks, indentured servants and enslaved individuals. John Dickinson Plantation Welcome Center, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Oct. 1–March 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. April 1–Sept. 30: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Ongoing
Letters From a Farmer in Pennsylvania.” Online exhibit explores the life of Founding Father John Dickinson and the publication of his essays that described Colonial American grievances with the British government.

Ongoing
New Castle: Three Forts, One Community.” Exhibit examines the 17th-century struggle for control of New Castle by the Dutch, Swedes and English, and the strongholds that they built to maintain their power. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-323-4453.

Ongoing
The Old State House: A True Restoration 1976-2016.” Display explores preservation work that has been conducted since Delaware’s first permanent capitol building in Dover was restored to its original appearance in 1976. From the collections of the State of Delaware. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Mon.–Sat., 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5054.

Photo of The Old State House at night
The Old State House

Ongoing
The Path to Freedom: A History of the Underground Railroad in Delaware.” Exhibit explores Delaware’s role in the clandestine network that transported American slaves to freedom including the true journey of the Hawkins family from bondage in Maryland, through Delaware, to freedom in Pennsylvania. Part II of the display explores some of the challenges faced by Black Delawareans after the Civil War, and showcases Delaware trailblazers who helped break racial and gender barriers. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission. 302-323-4453.

Ongoing
Sculpture by Charles Parks. Display of works by the noted Wilmington artist featuring historical and political figures including a Minute Man, and presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and George W. Bush. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-323-4453.

Ongoing
A Seaborne Citizenry: The DeBraak and Its Atlantic World.” Exhibit utilizes artifacts recovered from His Majesty’s Sloop of War DeBraak, a British warship that sank off the Delaware coast on May 25, 1798, to tell the story of the vessel, its crew and the historical context within which it operated in the Atlantic World of the late 18th century. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Nov. 1–March 31: Wed.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. April 1–Oct. 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. 302-645-1148.

Ongoing
Simple Machines.” Display demonstrating the six “simple machines”—incline ramp, screw, wedge, pulley, lever and wheel—that constitute the elementary building blocks of which many more-complicated machines are composed. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Oct. 1–March 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. April 1–Sept. 30: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Ongoing
When Janie Comes Marching Home: Women’s Fight to Serve.” Display explores the participation of women in America’s armed conflicts from the Revolutionary War to the present, and their fight to be allowed to serve their country during wartime. Legislative Hall, 411 Legislative Ave., Dover. Mon.–Fri., 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but passage through security checkpoint required. 302-744-4114.

Administered by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, the five museums of the State of Delaware—the John Dickinson Plantation, the Johnson Victrola Museum, the New Castle Court House Museum, The Old State House and the Zwaanendael Museum—tell the story of the First State’s contributions to the history and culture of the United States. Through tours, exhibits, school programs and hands-on activities, the museums shine a spotlight on Delaware’s unique history and the diverse people who came to live there. The museums are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. The New Castle Court House Museum and the John Dickinson Plantation are partner sites of the First State National Historical Park. The Old State House is located on the Dover Green, another partner site of the park. Go to the following for a comprehensive, long-term calendar of division-sponsored events.

Photo of Displays at the Johnson Victrola Museum
Displays at the Johnson Victrola Museum

The Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs is an agency of the State of Delaware. The division enhances Delaware’s quality of life by preserving the state’s unique historical heritage, fostering community stability and economic vitality and providing educational programs and assistance to the general public on Delaware history. The division’s diverse array of services includes operation of five museums which are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, administration of the State Historic Preservation Office, conservation of the state’s archaeological and historic-objects collections, operation of a conference center and management of historic properties across the state. Primary funding for division programs and services is provided by annual appropriations from the Delaware General Assembly and grants from the National Park Service, Department of the Interior, a federal agency. However, the contents and opinions expressed in the division’s programs and services do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Department of the Interior.

Picture of the Logo of the American Alliance of Museums logo

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Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-739-7787
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov


“Seams From the Past” series at Lewes’ Zwaanendael Museum in November 2019

 

Sharyn Murray will be conducting the program, “Pocket to Petticoats” on Nov. 2, 2019.

(DOVER, Del.Oct. 22, 2019)Historical clothing and textiles will be the subject of the four-part series, “Seams From the Past,” that will take place on succeeding Saturdays between Nov. 2 and 23, 2019 at the Zwaanendael Museum, located at 102 Kings Highway in Lewes, Del. A complete schedule is listed below. All programs begin at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Admission to the Nov. 2 and Nov. 23 programs is free. Admission to each cross-stich workshop on Nov. 9 and 16 is $10. Because of space limitations, reservations for all programs are required by calling the museum at 302-645-1148.

“Seams From the Past” Schedule

Saturday, Nov. 2, 2019
“Pocket to Petticoats.”
Presentation on Colonial clothing by Sharyn Murray, retired Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter. Free admission. Reservations deadline: Nov. 1, 2019

Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019
“A Stitch in History: Cross-Stitch for Beginners.”
Workshop by Madeline Golden, Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter, on the form of embroidery in which X-shaped stitches are used to form a picture. Admission fee of $10 includes materials for visitors to create their own cross-stitch. Reservations deadline: Nov. 2, 2019

Photo of a cross-stitch featuring a likeness of the Zwaanendael Museum
Cross-stitch featuring a likeness of the Zwaanendael Museum

Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019
“A Stitch in History: Cross-Stitch for Beginners and Intermediate.
Workshop by Madeline Golden, Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter, on the form of embroidery in which X-shaped stitches are used to form a picture. Admission fee of $10 includes materials for visitors to create their own cross-stitch. Reservations deadline: Nov. 9, 2019

Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019
“History A-Dressed.”
A study of fashion and textiles from the Colonial era to the Victorian era by Abigail Davis, Zwaanendael Museum historical interpreter. Free admission. Reservations deadline: Nov. 22, 2019

Photo of Abigail Davis
Abigail Davis will be conducting the program, “History A-Dressed on Nov. 23, 2019.

The Zwaanendael Museum was built in 1931 to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the state’s first European colony, Swanendael, established by the Dutch along Hoorn Kill (present-day Lewes-Rehoboth Canal) in 1631. Designed by E. William Martin (architect of Legislative Hall and the Hall of Records in Dover), the museum is modeled after the town hall in Hoorn, the Netherlands, and features a stepped facade gable with carved stonework and decorated shutters. The museum’s exhibits and presentations provide a showcase for Lewes-area maritime, military and social history. The museum is administered by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, an agency of the State of Delaware.

Photo of Zwaanendael Museum
Zwaanendael Museum

Picture of the Logo of the American Alliance of Museums

 


“William Penn Day” at Delaware’s New Castle Court House Museum on Oct. 26, 2019

(DOVER, Del.—Sept. 23, 2019)—On Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019, the New Castle Court House Museum, located at 211 Delaware St. in New Castle, Del., will present “William Penn Day,” a day-long series of activities commemorating the 337th anniversary of Penn’s Oct. 27, 1682 disembarkment at New Castle, his first landing in the New World. Admission for all programs is free and open to the public. For additional information, call 302-323-4453.

William Penn Day 2019 schedule of activities

Livery of Seisin ceremony. Historical interpreters Bob Vander Decker, David Price, and New Castle resident Jim Whisman as William Penn, re-enact the ceremony in which the town of New Castle, and a 12-mile circle of land surrounding it, were conveyed to William Penn by appointed representatives of the Duke of York. 10:15 a.m.

Photo of the re-enactment of the Livery of Seisin ceremony.
Re-enactment of the Livery of Seisin. The ceremony will take place at 10:15 a.m. on Oct. 26, 2019 in the New Castle Court House Museum.

“The 1670 Tryal of William Penn.” Historical play about the trial of William Penn (portrayed by Jim Whisman) who was accused of unlawful assembly and inciting a mob by preaching to a group of Quakers on a London street. Issues of religious freedom and the rights of a jury are explored in this 30-minute performance. Audience members may participate in the trial as witnesses and as members of the jury. 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

“Meet Mrs. Penn.” Living-history performance by New Castle resident Jean Norvell as Hannah Penn. 12:30 p.m.

Photo of Jean Norvell
Jean Norvell will portray Hannah Penn at 12:30 p.m. on Oct. 26, 2019.

The Delaware Music School’s Suzuki Violins. Performance by young violinists. 2 p.m.

Penn of Pennsylvania.” Screening of the 1942 film, starring Clifford Evans and Deborah Kerr, which explores Penn’s fight for religious freedom and the founding of Pennsylvania. 4 p.m.

Baroque music concert. 6 p.m.

Tours of the New Castle Court House Museum. Between performances from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Constructed in 1732, the New Castle Court House is one of the oldest active court buildings in the United States and was Delaware’s first state capitol. Here, the Colonial Assembly passed the 1776 Separation Resolution creating the Delaware State. During its nearly 300 years of history, this National Historic Landmark has played pivotal roles in the political, social and commercial life of both New Castle and Delaware. The museum is a partner site in the First State National Historical Park.

Photo of the New Castle Court House Museum
New Castle Court House Museum

The New Castle Court House Museum is administered by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, an agency of the State of Delaware. The division enhances Delaware’s quality of life by preserving the state’s unique historical heritage, fostering community stability and economic vitality and providing educational programs and assistance to the general public on Delaware history. The division’s diverse array of services includes operation of five museums which are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, administration of the State Historic Preservation Office, conservation of the state’s archaeological and historic-objects collections, operation of a conference center and management of historic properties across the state. Primary funding for division programs and services is provided by annual appropriations from the Delaware General Assembly and grants from the National Park Service, Department of the Interior, a federal agency. However, the contents and opinions expressed in the division’s programs and services do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Department of the Interior.

Picture of the American Alliance of Museums logo

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Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-739-7787
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov


Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs to sponsor 17 special events during October 2019

-Activities to include five programs on American maritime history-

(DOVER, Del.—Sept. 19, 2019)—During the month of October 2019, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be sponsoring 17 special programs at sites across the state. A full schedule is included below. Except where noted, all programs are free and open to the public.

Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs special events, October 2019

Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019
“Enrico Caruso: The Man With the Orchid-Lined Voice.” In celebration of Italian Heritage Month, guided tours will highlight the career of famed operatic tenor Enrico Caruso accompanied by 78-rpm recordings of the artist played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. First Saturday in the First State program. Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3262.

Photo of Enrico Caruso
The career of famed operatic tenor Enrico Caruso will be explored at the Johnson Victrola Museum on Oct. 5, 2019.

Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019
“The Trial of Captain La Mort.” Inspired by the real history of pirates along the Delaware coastline, this historical theater production allows visitors to participate in the trial of a fictitious captain and pirate crew. Visitors are encouraged to dress in pirate attire. First Saturday in the First State program. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Performances at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations are required by calling 302-744-5054.

Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019
River Towns Fall Festival. Family oriented event in the historic Delaware River towns of New Castle and Delaware City featuring food trucks; craft beers; live music; children’s games, amusements and crafts; pumpkin and face painting; and a hay ride. New Castle events in Battery Park from Noon–5 p.m. The New Castle Court House Museum will be open for tours from 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free shuttle between towns. 302-322-9802 or 302-323-4453.

Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019
“Delaware’s Naval Heroes and Their Battles.” Presentation by Bill Manthorpe, retired U.S. Navy captain and author. Part two of the four-part lecture series, “Delaware’s Maritime Heritage.” Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations for the lecture are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Oct. 4, 2019.

Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019
“Shakespeare, Poe and Fiends—A Night of Readings From the Dark Side.” Delaware Shakespeare presents dramatic readings for the Halloween season. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. 7:30 p.m. Reservations required. Tickets $18 available online at www.delshakes.org. 302-323-4453.

Photo of players from Delaware Shakespeare
Delaware Shakespeare will present dramatic readings for the Halloween season on Oct. 10, 2019.

Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019
“18th Century Trades Day.” Day-long series of activities explores occupations of the 1700s including preserving food in the smokehouse, dyeing fabric, carpentry, blacksmithing and making bricks out of clay. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. 10:30 a.m.–4 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019
Demonstrations by the Thistledown Fiber Arts Guild. Program explores spinning, weaving, knitting and other fabric arts. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 1–3 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019
“The Battle of the Chesapeake.” Multi-media presentation by historic-site interpreter Tom Welch on how the French fleet under Adm. de Grasse paved the way for the surrender of Gen. Cornwallis at Yorktown and the ultimate victory for the American forces over the British. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. 1:30 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5054.

Painting depicting the Battle of the Chesapeake
Painting depicting the Battle of the Chesapeake from the Hampton Roads Naval Museum, Norfolk, Va. The battle will be explored in a program at The Old State House on Oct. 12, 2019.

Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019
“Ships Named ‘Delaware.’ ” Presentation by Bill Manthorpe, retired U.S. Navy captain and author. Part three of the four-part lecture series, “Delaware’s Maritime Heritage.” Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations for the lecture are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Oct. 11, 2019.

Photo of the battleship USS Delaware
The battleship USS Delaware (1909-1924) will be among the vessels explored in the program, “Ships Named ‘Delaware,’ ” that will take place at the Zwaanendael Museum on Oct. 12, 2019.

Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019
“Shakespeare, Poe and Fiends—Readings From the Dark Side.” Delaware Shakespeare presents dramatic readings for the Halloween season. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. 3 p.m. Reservations required. Tickets $18 available online at www.delshakes.org. 302-744-5054.

Monday, Oct. 14, 2019
Columbus Day. The following museums of the State of Delaware will be open: The Johnson Victrola Museum and The Old State House, open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. The following museums will be closed: The John Dickinson Plantation, New Castle Court House Museum and the Zwaanendael Museum. 302-744-5054.

Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2019
Delaware State Review Board for Historic Preservation annual meeting. Agenda TBA. The Delaware Room, Delaware Public Archives, 121 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Dover. 10 a.m.–Noon. 302-736-7417.

Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019
“The Navy at Lewes and at the Cape.” Presentation by Bill Manthorpe, retired U.S. Navy captain and author. Final segment of the four-part lecture series, “Delaware’s Maritime Heritage.” Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. on the museum’s 2nd floor (entry via staircase; no elevator). Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations for the lecture are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Oct. 18, 2019.

Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019
Poetry reading by Jane Miller. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St. New Castle. Program at 2 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-323-4453.

Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019
Blackbird Creek Fall Festival. Family-friendly events include outdoor activities, hayrides, display booths, crafts and a hands-on potpourri demonstration by historic-site interpreters from the John Dickinson Plantation. Blackbird Creek Reserve, 801 Blackbird Landing Road, Townsend. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. 302-739-6377.

Friday, Oct. 25, 2019
“Lantern Tour of the Plantation.” Program explores the parties, games, and entertainment that would have abounded at the plantation during the nighttime in the 18th century. Activities will also include a wagon-ride guided-tour conducted by staff of the St. Jones Reserve exploring the nocturnal life of the estuary. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. 6:30–8 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations are required by calling the John Dickinson Plantation at 302-739-3277 no later than Oct. 22, 2019.

Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019
William Penn Day. Day-long series of programs commemorating the 337th anniversary of Penn’s disembarkment at New Castle, his first landing in the New World. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. 10 a.m.–7 p.m. 302-323-4453.

Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019
“Mysteries of History.” Walking tours explore the unusual tombstones of St. Peter’s cemetery in Lewes. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Tours leaves from the museum at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations for the tours are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Oct. 25, 2019.

Exhibits and displays, October 2019
In addition to special programming, the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs is sponsoring the following exhibits and displays. Admission is free and open to the public:

Ongoing
Delaware Railroads: Elegant Travel and Timely Transport.” Exhibit explores the history of rail travel and transport in the First State emphasizing the New Castle and Frenchtown Railroad (1832), the Delaware Railroad (1852), the Junction and Breakwater Railroad (1857) and the Queen Anne’s Railroad (1896). Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. April 1–Oct. 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. Nov. 1–March 31: Wed.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-645-1148.

Ongoing
Drawing America to Victory: The Persuasive Power of the Arts in World War I.” Online exhibit revolves around 27 World War I posters from the collections of the State of Delaware.

Ongoing
Five Stories.” Display explores the varied lives of people who lived on the plantation including Dickinson family members, tenant farmers, tradesmen, free Blacks, indentured servants and enslaved individuals. John Dickinson Plantation Welcome Center, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. April 1–Sept. 30: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. Oct. 1–March 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Photo of panel from the “Five Stories” display
Panel from the “Five Stories” display

Ongoing
Letters From a Farmer in Pennsylvania.” Online exhibit explores the life of Founding Father John Dickinson and the publication of his essays that described Colonial American grievances with the British government.

Ongoing
New Castle: Three Forts, One Community.” Exhibit examines the 17th-century struggle for control of New Castle by the Dutch, Swedes and English, and the strongholds that they built to maintain their power. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-323-4453.

Ongoing
The Old State House: A True Restoration 1976-2016.” Display explores preservation work that has been conducted since Delaware’s first permanent capitol building in Dover was restored to its original appearance in 1976. From the collections of the State of Delaware. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Mon.–Sat., 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5054.

Ongoing
The Path to Freedom: A History of the Underground Railroad in Delaware.” Exhibit explores Delaware’s role in the clandestine network that transported American slaves to freedom including the true journey of the Hawkins family from bondage in Maryland, through Delaware, to freedom in Pennsylvania. Part II of the display explores some of the challenges faced by Black Delawareans after the Civil War, and showcases Delaware trailblazers who helped break racial and gender barriers. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission. 302-323-4453.

Ongoing
Sculpture by Charles Parks. Display of works by the noted Wilmington artist featuring historical and political figures including a Minute Man, and presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and George W. Bush. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sun., 1:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-323-4453.

Ongoing
A Seaborne Citizenry: The DeBraak and Its Atlantic World.” Exhibit utilizes artifacts recovered from His Majesty’s Sloop of War DeBraak, a British warship that sank off the Delaware coast on May 25, 1798, to tell the story of the vessel, its crew and the historical context within which it operated in the Atlantic World of the late 18th century. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. April 1–Oct. 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. Nov. 1–March 31: Wed.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-645-1148.

Painting depicting the capsizing of the DeBraak
Artistic rendition of the capsizing of the DeBraak by Peggy Kane, 1990

Ongoing
Simple Machines.” Display demonstrating the six “simple machines”—incline ramp, screw, wedge, pulley, lever and wheel—that constitute the elementary building blocks of which many more-complicated machines are composed. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. April 1–Sept. 30: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sun., 1:30–4:30 p.m. Oct. 1–March 31: Tue.–Sat., 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Ongoing
When Janie Comes Marching Home: Women’s Fight to Serve.” Display explores the participation of women in America’s armed conflicts from the Revolutionary War to the present, and their fight to be allowed to serve their country during wartime. Legislative Hall, 411 Legislative Ave., Dover. Limited visitation hours; call 302-739-9194 before planning a visit.

Administered by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, the five museums of the State of Delaware—the John Dickinson Plantation, the Johnson Victrola Museum, the New Castle Court House Museum, The Old State House and the Zwaanendael Museum—tell the story of the First State’s contributions to the history and culture of the United States. Through tours, exhibits, school programs and hands-on activities, the museums shine a spotlight on Delaware’s unique history and the diverse people who came to live there. The museums are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. The New Castle Court House Museum and the John Dickinson Plantation are partner sites of the First State National Historical Park. The Old State House is located on the Dover Green, another partner site of the park. Go to the following for a comprehensive, long-term calendar of division-sponsored events.

The Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs is an agency of the State of Delaware. The division enhances Delaware’s quality of life by preserving the state’s unique historical heritage, fostering community stability and economic vitality and providing educational programs and assistance to the general public on Delaware history. The division’s diverse array of services includes operation of five museums which are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, administration of the State Historic Preservation Office, conservation of the state’s archaeological and historic-objects collections, operation of a conference center and management of historic properties across the state. Primary funding for division programs and services is provided by annual appropriations from the Delaware General Assembly and grants from the National Park Service, Department of the Interior, a federal agency. However, the contents and opinions expressed in the division’s programs and services do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Department of the Interior.

Picture of the Logo of the American Alliance of Museums logo

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Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-739-7787
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov