This month, I'm going to share about a few favorite facts belonging to my former home state of Delaware. Several of these are likely to surprise you!
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The Original Colonial Williamsburg?Let's chat a bit about Colonial history. How much do you know? Do you have a passion for that era, or is your interest more in the 1800's and early 1900's? Or perhaps you love the Medieval or Biblical time periods and areas before America was born. Regardless of your interest, it's always good to do the research yourself and delve into history on your own instead of leaving it to textbooks, documentaries, or teachers to give you the facts.
For example, "The First State" is often overlooked in favor of cities like Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Boston, or New York City. But did you know about Caesar Rodney’s ride from Dover, Delaware, to Philadelphia on July 2nd to interrupt the gathering of the Continental Congress and cast his vote in favor of independence from England? The delegates were at a stalemate, and Rodney’s vote turned the tide, causing a domino effect with the delegates which led to the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Had it not been for Rodney’s ride, we might not celebrate Independence Day on July 4th, or even at all.
Wilmington, Delaware, has been the focal point of industry for nearly 400 years. Everything from shipbuilding, gunpowder manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, railroad cars, carriages, and leather. By the end of the Civil War, Wilmington was producing more iron than the rest of the country combined and it rated first in the production of gunpowder. Pharmaceuticals followed a close second and still remain a significant source of production today.
Then there's the original capital city of New Castle, Delaware. Up until the Revolutionary War, it was the county seat for all government, and most of the prominent citizens resided within the town limits or somewhere nearby. Because of its position on the banks of the Delaware River (a river that connected Philadelphia with the Atlantic Ocean), New Castle also became a popular stopping point for supply ships on their way up the river to Wilmington and Philadelphia.
In fact, long after the Colonial era, the 1800's and a good bit of the 1900's had past, New Castle remained a fully-functioning Colonial town, complete with cobblestone streets, and even the occasional clip-clop of horses's hooves from a horse and buggy. Not many are aware that even today, New Castle remains a restored Colonial town, but I bet most have heard of Colonial Williamsburg.
When tourism and travel industry developers were seeking out a location for a town to provide the flavor of Colonial times to tourists and be a destination for school field trips, New Castle was among the first to be considered. However, the residents declined the potential, preferring instead that their little town to remain quaint and private. As a result, Williamsburg became the international tourist site. Those who are aware of New Castle still visit for a less-crowded historical experience, and if you happen to be in the area, you should make time to pay a visit. You won't regret it.
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NOW IT'S YOUR TURN:
* Can you name at least one of the major companies or businesses incorporated in Delaware? Can be present or historical, but it must be a proper name, not the general industry. If you can Google, you can find at least one.
* Have you ever visited a restored or living Colonial town? Which one? What do you remember most about that visit?
* What is your favorite historical era, whether in the United States or another country around the world. Why is it your favorite?
Tiffany Amber Stockton has been crafting and embellishing stories since childhood, when she was accused of having a very active imagination and cited with talking entirely too much. Today, she has honed those childhood skills to become an author and speaker who is also an advocate for literacy as an educational consultant with Usborne Books. On the side, she dabbles in the health & wellness and personal development industry, helping others become their best from the inside out.
She lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, along with their two children and two dogs in Colorado. She has sold twenty (21) books so far and is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, GoodReads, and LinkedIn.