Historical Affairs programs in December 2022

(DOVER, Del. — Nov. 22, 2022) — The Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be sponsoring seven special programs during the month of December 2022. A full schedule is included below. Admission is free and open to the public, but reservations are required for some programs. Go to the following link for additional information and reservation instructions: https://history.delaware.gov/2022/11/01/hca-programs-december-2022.

Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs special programs, December 2022

Thursday, Dec. 1, 2022
“Hospitality Night.” Holiday program in which the museum will be decorated for the season by the Sussex Gardeners utilizing oyster shells and other nautical items on the theme “Gifts From the Sea.” Other activities will include historical interpreters, demonstrations, music and seasonal refreshments. Presented in partnership with the Lewes Chamber of Commerce. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. 5–8 p.m. 302-645-1148 or mailto:zmuseum@delaware.gov.

Photo of the front door of the Zwaanendael Museum decorated for the holidays.
Zwaanendael Museum holiday decorations created in a previous year by the Sussex Gardeners.

Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022
“Tour Zwaanendael Museum.” Enjoy the museum’s festive holiday-décor created by the Sussex Gardeners utilizing oyster shells and other nautical items on the theme “Gifts From the Sea.” Event held in conjunction with the Lewes Historical Society’s Holiday Tour of Lewes. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. 302-645-1148 or mailto:zmuseum@delaware.gov.

Saturday, Dec. 3, 2022
“Who Were the Signers: Delaware’s Ratification Document.” In recognition of Delaware Day, guided tours will focus on the stories of some of the men who signed Delaware’s ratification document 235 years ago. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. 302-744-5054 or mailto:OSHmuseum@delaware.gov.

Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022
“Hollywood History at the Court House: ‘Knickerbocker Holiday.’ ” Screening of the 1944 film “Knickerbocker Holiday” and a brief presentation by New Castle Court House Site Supervisor, Cindy Snyder, on Peter Stuyvesant. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Film at 6:30 p.m. 302-323-4453. For reservations, email mailto:Cynthia.Snyder@delaware.gov.

Friday, Dec. 9, 2022
Concert by Last Chance. Folk music. Presented in partnership with the Delaware Friends of Folk. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. 7:30 p.m. Free admission. 302-744-5054 or mailto:OSHmuseum@delaware.gov.

Saturday, Dec. 10, 2022
“Spirit of Christmas in New Castle.” One of the best preserved Colonial-era towns in America features a day-long series of events including tours of decorated historic homes, re-enactments, programs at museums including the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum, crafts, musical entertainment and more. Downtown New Castle. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. 302-328-3279.

Friday, Dec. 16, 2022
“Well Seasoned Heirlooms.” In this virtual series, historic-site interpreter Kimberly Fritsch of the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum shines a spotlight on the practices, recipes and women throughout Delaware history as they speak to us through their food. Cookbooks became a way for women to pass along their legacy and convey a sense of what was important in their culture, daily lives and, even, weather occurrences and events of the time. Program streamed live via Zoom. Noon. Free but registration required. 302-323-4453 or mailto:NCCHmuseum@delaware.gov.

Saturday, Dec. 24, 2022
Christmas Eve. All division-administered museums will be closed.

Sunday, Dec. 25, 2022
Christmas Day. All division-administered museums will be closed.

Monday, Dec. 26, 2022
Christmas Day state holiday. All division-administered museums will be closed.

Saturday, Dec. 31, 2022
New Year’s Eve. All division-administered museums will be open.

Sunday, Jan. 1, 2023
New Year’s Day. All division-administered museums will be closed.

Monday, Jan. 2, 2023
New Year’s Day state holiday. All division-administered museums will be closed.

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 and special programs, 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 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 public on Delaware history. The division’s diverse array of services includes operation of five 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.

Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-577-5170
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov


Historical Affairs programs in November 2022

(DOVER, Del. — Oct. 24, 2022) — The Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be sponsoring eight special programs during the month of November 2022. A full schedule is included below. Admission is free and open to the public, but reservations are required for some programs. Go to the following link for additional information and reservation instructions: https://history.delaware.gov/2022/09/27/division-programs-november-2022/.

Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs special programs, November 2022

Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 5 and 6, 2022
“18th Century Market Fair.” Day-long series of programs harkens back to 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 Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Old State House, located at 25 The Green, will celebrate the fair on Nov. 5 with quill-pen writing throughout the day and the theatrical production “Reminiscences of the Life and Times of Dr. James Tilton” at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. featuring Historic-Site Interpreter Steven Mumford portraying Delawarean Dr. James Tilton who served as United States surgeon general during the War of 1812. First Saturday in the First State event sponsored by the First State Heritage Park. The Green, Dover. Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. For additional information, call the First State Heritage Park at 302-739-9194 or The Old State House at 302-744-5054 or mailto:OSHmuseum@delaware.gov.

Photo of Old State House Historic-Site Interpreter Steven Mumford
Old State House Historic-Site Interpreter Steven Mumford will portray Dr. James Tilton as part of the 18th Century Market Fair on Nov. 5, 2022.

 

Friday, Nov. 11, 2022
Concert by Paul and Begoña.Flamenco and Latin music. Presented in partnership with the Delaware Friends of Folk. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. 7:30 p.m. 302-744-5054 or mailto:OSHmuseum@delaware.gov.

Saturday, Nov. 12, 2022
“Veterans Walking Tours.” Brian Cannon, former lead interpreter for the New Castle Court House Museum, will conduct 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 Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum. Tours depart at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. from Immanuel Episcopal Church, 100 Harmony St., New Castle. Free but registration required. mailto:Cynthia.Snyder@delaware.gov. 302-323-4453.

Photo of Immanuel Episcopal Church on the Green
Veterans Walking Tours will depart from Immanuel Episcopal Church in New Castle on Nov. 12, 2022.

Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022
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. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. 10 a.m.–4:15 p.m. 302-645-1148 or mailto:zmuseum@delaware.gov.

Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022
“Hollywood History at the Court House: ‘Dragonwyck.’ ” Screening of the 1946 film “Dragonwyck” starring Vincent Price and Gene Tierney, plus a brief presentation by New Castle Court House Site Supervisor, Cindy Snyder, on patroonship in America. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Film at 6:30 p.m. mailto:Cynthia.Snyder@delaware.gov. 302-323-4453.

Friday, Nov. 18, 2022
“Delaware’s First Communities.” Virtual program in which Nena Todd, site supervisor of The Old State House, and Theo Braunskill of the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware, explore the rich history of communities that have resided in Delaware for thousands of years and still remain today, despite centuries of trauma and erasure. Hear how they have survived. Presented in celebration of National Native American Heritage Month. Program streamed live via Zoom. 4 p.m. Free but registration required. 302-645-1148 or mailto:zmuseum@delaware.gov.

Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware logo

 

Friday, Nov. 18, 2022
“Well Seasoned Heirlooms.” In this virtual series, historic-site interpreter Kimberly Fritsch of the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum shines a spotlight on the practices, recipes and women throughout Delaware history as they speak to us through their food. Cookbooks became a way for women to pass along their legacy and convey a sense of what was important in their culture, daily lives and, even, weather occurrences and events of the time. Program streamed live via Zoom. Noon. Free but registration required. 302-323-4453 or mailto:NCCHmuseum@delaware.gov.

Saturday, Nov. 19, 2022
Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site: Touring the homestead. Join historical interpreters for this introductory program on the history of the Cooch’s Bridge homestead. Learn about some of the individuals who lived on the property, how they shaped the land around them and how the location’s landscape contributed to national history. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site, 961 S. Old Baltimore Pike, Newark. Tours at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Limit 20 visitors per tour. Free but reservations required. 302-922-7116 or mailto:CBmuseum@delaware.gov.

Photo of the Cooch's Bridge homestead
Tours of the Cooch’s Bridge homestead will take place on Nov. 19, 2022.

Remaining division programs in October 2022

In addition, the division will be presenting the following programs during the remainder of October. Go to the following link for additional information and reservation instructions: https://history.delaware.gov/2022/09/01/hca-programs-october-2022/.

Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2022
Public workshop on the development of an interpretive plan for the Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site. Input sought in creating a publicly accessible and community-focused experience for the Newark location that includes the focal point of Delaware’s only Revolutionary War land battle. Workshop streamed live via Zoom. 6-8 p.m. Free but registration required. 302-922-7116 or mailto:CBmuseum@delaware.gov.

Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022
William Penn Day. Day-long series of programs commemorating the 340th anniversary of Penn’s disembarkment at New Castle, his first landing in the New World. Activities include “Tea with Mrs. Penn,” 17th century cooking, speakers, music and more. Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Free admission. 302-323-4453 or mailto:NCCHmuseum@delaware.gov.

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 and special programs, 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 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 public on Delaware history. The division’s diverse array of services includes operation of five 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.

Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-577-5170
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov


‘William Penn Day’ in New Castle on Oct. 29, 2022

(DOVER, Del. — Oct. 17, 2022) — On Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022, the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ New Castle Court House Museum, located at 211 Delaware St. in New Castle, Delaware, will present “William Penn Day,” a day-long series of activities commemorating the 340th 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 or mailto:NCCHmuseum@delaware.gov.

William Penn Day 2022 schedule of activities

  • Tours of the New Castle Court House Museum and William Penn display. 10 and 11 a.m.
  • “The Life and Cookery of Gulielma Penn.” Presentation by historical interpreter Kim Fritch on William Penn’s first wife including recipes from her 17th-century cookbook. 1 p.m.
  • “Tea with Mrs. Hannah Penn.” Jean Norvell portrays Hannah Penn, the proprietor of Pennsylvania’s second wife, as she discusses her life with William in America. English tea provided by the Mercury Café and Tea House. 3 p.m.
  • “Music in the Time of William Penn.” Performance by a string ensemble from the Music School of Delaware. 5 p.m.

Built in 1732, the New Castle Court House is one of the oldest active courthouses in the United States and was Delaware’s first state capitol. Here in 1776, New Castle, Kent and Sussex Counties declared their independence from Pennsylvania and England creating the Delaware State. During its nearly 300 years of history, this National Historic Landmark has played many 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 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.

-End-

Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-577-5170
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov


John Dickinson Plantation’s 2022 ‘18th Century Trades Day’

(DOVER, Del. — Sept. 26, 2022) — On Saturday, Oct. 8, 2022, visitors to the home of the “Penman of the Revolution” will explore Colonial-era job opportunities during the “18th Century Trades Day” that will take place between 10:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ John Dickinson Plantation located at 340 Kitts Hummock Road in Dover, Delaware. All activities are free and open to the public. For additional information, call 302-739-3277.

“18th Century Trades Day” will provide opportunities to learn about traditional carpentry and candle dipping; preserving food in a smokehouse; dyeing fabric 1700s-style; and observing the power of a musket being fired.

The John Dickinson Plantation, Delaware’s first National Historic Landmark, was the boyhood home of John Dickinson, a founding father of the United States, a framer and signer of the U.S. Constitution and “Penman of the Revolution.” Dickinson wrote eloquently about freedom and liberty for all while continuing to hold human beings in bondage. The plantation shares the stories of the Dickinsons; the tenant farmers; the trades people; the indentured servants; and the free and enslaved people who lived, labored and died on the land. Administered by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, the museum is a partner site in the First State National Historical Park.

Photo of the log'd dwelling at the John Dickinson Plantation
Log’d dwelling at the John Dickinson Plantation. The building is a recreation of the type of housing inhabited by enslaved people at the plantation as well as tenants and indentured servants. The site’s mansion house is in the background.


The John Dickinson Plantation is administered by the 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.

Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-577-5170
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov


Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site public workshops

(DOVER, Del. — Sept. 22, 2022) — The Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will host three public workshops during the month of October 2022 seeking input in the development of an interpretive plan for the Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site located at 961 South Old Baltimore Pike in Newark.

Site Manager Kaitlyn Dykes and staff from the division are working with Cultural Institution Consultant Robert Forloney to prepare a document that will assess the needs of the site — from administration and management to visitor experience to community and stakeholder engagement — as well as possible design options for what that would ultimately look like.

“The goal is to create a site where the interpretation is really community driven and includes the more expansive history of the site while putting a laser focus on what people want to see and hear from us as we build from the ground up,” Dykes said. “Most places don’t get to do that because most historic sites are already established by the time they reach out to the community. We’re in a very cool spot where we get to reach out to the community first to build the foundation.”

The goal is to have a plan completed in 2023 which will guide work over the next two to five years.

In order to do that, the public is encouraged to participate in upcoming public workshops in October 2022. Two workshops will be held in person, and one will be held virtually:

• Monday, Oct. 3, 2022. 6–8 p.m. In person at the Buena Vista Conference Center, 661 S. Dupont Highway, New Castle. Free and open to the public

• Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022. 10 a.m.–Noon. In person at the Buena Vista Conference Center, 661 S. Dupont Highway, New Castle. Free and open to the public

• Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2022. 6–8 p.m. Virtual workshop streamed live via Zoom. Free but registration required by going to https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_FMc57qofSiyDpzAIJmP9OA.

For additional information, call the Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site at 302-922-7116 or mailto:CBmuseum@delaware.gov.

The Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site currently has multiple components, including the Cooch Homestead and Cooch-Dayett Mill complex. The homestead, which includes a 10-acre parcel with the historic home and outbuildings, was the focal point for the Battle of Cooch’s Bridge, the only Revolutionary War battle fought on Delaware soil.

Photo of Cooch-Dayett Mills, circa 1950.
Cooch-Dayett Mills, circa 1950. The site’s mill race is in the foreground.

The mill complex includes the circa-1830s mill, miller’s house, outbuildings and the right-of-way access to the mill race and dams along the Christina River. The current mill is the third in a succession of grist mills built by the family in this area, with the first dating to the mid-18th century. This portion of the property spans more than 60 acres and includes preserved land such as floodplain, meadows and a leased agricultural field. Both components of the property help tell the agricultural and industrial story in and around Newark and illuminate the lives of those who worked and lived in the area.

 

The Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site is administered by the 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 public on Delaware history. The division’s diverse array of services includes operation of five 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.

Contact:
Jim Yurasek
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs
Phone: 302-577-5170
E-mail: Jim.Yurasek@delaware.gov
Web: http://history.delaware.gov