First State Heritage Park

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First State Heritage Park
Delaware State Park
Delaware State Capitol.jpg
The Delaware State Capitol (or Legislative Hall) in Dover
Country United States
State Delaware
County Kent
Elevation 36 ft (11.0 m)
Coordinates 39°09′29″N 75°31′29″W / 39.15806°N 75.52472°W / 39.15806; -75.52472Coordinates: 39°09′29″N 75°31′29″W / 39.15806°N 75.52472°W / 39.15806; -75.52472
Founded 2004
Management Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control
First State Heritage Park is located in Delaware
First State Heritage Park
Location of the First State Heritage Park at Dover in Delaware
Website: First State Heritage Park

First State Heritage Park is Delaware's first urban "park without boundaries" linking historic and cultural sites in the city that has been the seat of state government since 1777. It is a partnership of state and city agencies under the leadership of Delaware State Parks. It is located in Dover, Kent County, Delaware in the United States. Delaware was the first state to ratify the United States Constitution. The sites of the park highlight Delaware's role as the "First State." First State Heritage Park is open year round, with special tours of the sites given the first Saturday of each month.[1]

Historic and cultural sites[edit]

The sites of First State Heritage Park were organized as a state park in 2004 by Governor Ruth Ann Minner. It is a partnership between the Delaware Economic Development Office, the Delaware Department of State, and the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

The sites of the park are First State Heritage Park Welcome Center and Galleries, The Old State House, Legislative Hall: The State Capitol, The John Bell House, The Delaware Public Archives, The Johnson Victrola Museum, Woodburn and Hall House - The Governor's House, and the Biggs Museum of American Art.[2]

First State Heritage Park Welcome Center and Galleries[edit]

The First State Heritage Park Welcome Center and Galleries is open Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 4:30pm, Saturday, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. and Sunday, 1:30 p.m. - 4:30pm. It features changing exhibitions created by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs and provides information on local and statewide attractions, events and activities. All-day free parking.[2]

The Old State House[edit]

The Old State House served as the state's first permanent capitol building from 1791 until 1932. It is located on Dover's historic green. The Old State House originally housed Delaware's state government and the government of Kent County.[3] The Old Statehouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971.[4]

The State House has undergone several expansions and renovations since it opened in 1791. It was originally built in a Georgian architecture style. The state house was remodeled in 1873 to reflect a Victorian style and restored in 1976 to its original appearance. Extensive renovations of the State House also took place in 2007.[3]

Guided tours of the building are offered throughout the day Monday - Saturday, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. and Sunday, 1:30 - 4:30 p.m.

Delaware Legislative Hall[edit]

Legislative Hall is the state capitol building. It houses offices and the assembly room for the Delaware State Legislature. Legislative Hall has served as the main legislative building since 1933. It is open for tours, Monday - Friday, 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.[2]

John Bell House[edit]

Visit with historical interpreters and learn about this newly restored house, the oldest surviving wooden structure in Dover. Open Monday - Saturday, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Delaware Public Archives[edit]

Delaware Public Archives

The Delaware Public Archives building houses an extensive collection of materials dating back as far as the 17th century to today. The research room is open Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m - 4:15 p.m and on the second Saturday of the month from 9:00 a.m. - 4:15 p.m.[2]

Johnson Victrola Museum[edit]

The Johnson Victrola Museum was built in honor of Eldridge R. Johnson, founder of the Victor Talking Machine Company. Exhibits at the museum include paintings, objects, memorabilia, and trademarks that highlight the development of the sound recording industry. The museum is open Wednesday - Saturday, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.[5] The museum is part of the Delaware State Museum Buildings complex, listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972.[4]

The Victrola developed by Eldridge R. Johnson.

Biggs Museum of American Art[edit]

The Biggs Museum of American Art houses a permanent collection of American fine and decorative arts as well as changing exhibitions throughout the year. It is open Tuesday - Saturday, 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.n.[2]

Woodburn and Hall House - The Governor's House[edit]

Enjoy guided tours of Woodburn, the official residence of Delaware's Governor since 1965; Hall House, the Governor's guest house; and a self-guided tour of the gardens. Available without reservations, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. on the first Saturday of the month. Tours at other times available by advance reservation.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "First State Heritage Park". Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. Retrieved 2011-05-12. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Attractions at First State Heritage Park at Dover, Delaware". Retrieved 9 June 2016. 
  3. ^ a b "State House Museum". State of Delaware. Retrieved 2007-09-29. 
  4. ^ a b National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  5. ^ "Welcome to the Johnson Victrola Museum". State of Delaware. Retrieved 2007-09-29. 
  6. ^ "THE HOME OF DELAWARE'S GOVERNOR". State of Delaware. Retrieved 2007-09-29. 

External links[edit]