Monday, May 28, 2012

Delaware and Annapolis, MD

Hiram Rodney Burton House c1730
Ryves Holt House c1665
Now Historical Society office
We had a short stay near Long Neck, DE at Leisure Point Resort.  During the stay we visited Lewes (pronounced LOO-is) Delaware which claims to be the "First Town in the First State".  Delaware was the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution (First State) and Lewes was the location of the first settlement in Delaware (although the first one didn't survive long). Use this link to see a timeline of the history.   (
Fisher-Martin House c1730
Now Visitor Center
Cemetery with head stones
dating back to 1700s 

We were impressed by this little town.  They have lots of buildings dating back to the 1600s, all restored and well maintained.  It was a joy to walk around and see the effort that is being made to maintain these old buildings and this old town.

We made a move up the state to a park about 20 miles south of Dover.  We named Delaware the chicken state because we saw lots of poultry farms and packaging plants. We did later learn it is a major industry in Delaware (42% of agriculture related income) so were not off base with the thought.

Maryland State House history
On Friday May 25 we braved holiday traffic to drive to the west side of DC to visit Ann's cousin and family.  We were driving the opposite direction of all of holiday "get out of town" traffic so it went fine.  We had a great visit!  Saturday we drove back to our campground in Delaware with a stop to spend the afternoon in Annapolis, Maryland.  This is one of my all time favorite towns. It is old, small, and has a well maintained historic district.  This was my second visit and it was even better the second time.  The State House (Capitol) has a fantastic history.  See photo for summary.

Maryland State House
Old Senate Chamber
As you walk around the historic district streets and all of the old homes dating back to the 1700s it is just awe inspiring to think of the people that have been here and the history that has been made here.

Maryland Inn - c1770

Charles Carroll House - 1706

Delaware Old State House
The next day we made a visit to Dover Delaware. We drove around the small historic area which wasn't really identified well or fixed up much.  The best area was around the Old State House which was built in 1792. There are old houses and buildings around "The Green" which is a loop street in front of the Old State House. The Ridgely House is the oldest of the buildings, built in 1728, and is still lived in by descendants of the original builders.  Prior to the State House being built the government met in taverns near this location.  One of these taverns was the Golden Fleece Tavern. See photos.
Delaware Old State House court room

Ridgely House 1728
Golden Fleece Tavern plaque

Site of The Golden Fleece Tavern

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