Greg Buchman promoted to physical-plant trades mechanic

January 30th, 2015 by Jim Yurasek

During January 2015, Greg Buchman of the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ Preservation Maintenance Team was promoted to the position of Physical-Plant Trades Mechanic III. Buchman first came to the division as a volunteer in June 2012 and joined the staff as a maintenance mechanic later that summer. Prior to coming to the agency, Buchman worked for over 15 years in a variety of trades including carpentry, electrical mechanics, plumbing and automobile mechanics. His prior experience includes work for a number of Delaware companies including Del-Mar Appliance in Dover, Middletown Appliances and Shore Line Electrical in Kenton.

Greg Buchman

Greg Buchman

With more than 120 years of combined experience in various trades, the division’s Preservation Maintenance Team is a group of skilled professionals that can handle any challenge that comes their way in order to maintain, repair and preserve the nearly 90 structures administered by the division.

 

Steven M. Pulinka joins Delaware State Review Board for Historic Preservation

January 30th, 2015 by Jim Yurasek

Steven M. Pulinka, a Middletown, Del. resident and curator of the Mount Pleasant Plantation in Spring Grove, Va. has recently been named to the Delaware State Review Board for Historic Preservation.

Steven M. Pulinka

Steven M. Pulinka

Pulinka has extensive professional experience in the area of administration and restoration of historic houses, curation of decorative-arts collections and historic-property management. In 2010, he received Virginia’s Preservation Project of the Year Award for the restoration of Mount Pleasant Plantation.

Pulinka’s preservation-related activities in Delaware include service as director of Historic Houses of Odessa, then a division of Winterthur Museum, from 1986 to 2002; as the curator of historic structures for Winterthur Museum from 2002 to 2003; and as a 2003 adjunct professor at the University of Delaware where he taught a master’s level course in the Museum Studies program entitled “Preservation of Historic Structures.” He holds a Master of Arts in American Studies from Pennsylvania State University and a Bachelor of Science in Social Studies and a teaching certificate from Millersville State University in Millersville, Pa.

The Delaware State Review Board for Historic Preservation serves as the advisory body to the state historic preservation officer, the official appointed by the governor to oversee and implement the state’s preservation policies in accordance with federal standards. The State Review Board evaluates historic properties for placement in the National Register of Historic Places, and provides professional advice on historic preservation matters.

Division releases 2014 annual report

January 30th, 2015 by Jim Yurasek

The Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs has released its 2014 annual report which spotlights the awards and recognition received by the agency during the past year. Go to the following to read the full report: “Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs Annual Report—2014: An Award-Winning Year.”

Cover of the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs 2014 annual report.

 

Call for papers: “The Early Colonial Delaware Valley—An Archaeological and Historical Symposium”

January 29th, 2015 by Jim Yurasek

The Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the Archaeological Society of Delaware, is seeking informal, interdisciplinary presentations on archaeology and cultures of the Delaware Valley which will be presented at “The Early Colonial Delaware Valley—An Archaeological and Historical Symposium” that will take place from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 9, 2015 at the New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., in New Castle, Del.

New Castle Court House Museum

New Castle Court House Museum

Now in its eighth year, the symposium is dedicated to building a regional-level dialog that can identify the uniqueness of the cultures that existed in the Delaware Valley during the early period of European colonization. Persons interested in making a presentation at the symposium should submit an abstract no later than April 24, 2015. Admission to the symposium is free and open to the public. To submit an abstract or to make a reservation to attend the symposium, contact Craig Lukezic at craig.lukezic@state.de.us or call 302-736-7407.

African American History Month programs among 18 special events sponsored by the division during February 2015

January 14th, 2015 by Jim Yurasek

During the month of February 2015, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be offering 18 special events at sites across the state. Twelve of these events will be presented in commemoration of African American History Month, an annual observance celebrating the invaluable contributions that the black community has made to the culture and history of the United States. Unless otherwise indicated, events are free and open to the public. For additional information, call 302-744-5055.

Dr. Gregory Scott will speak at The Old State House on Feb. 7 and 28, 2015.

Dr. Gregory Scott will speak at The Old State House on Feb. 7 and 28, 2015.

Highlights of the month include “Celebrating Love and Family: ‘The Roots of an African-American Family and Community—Star-Hill and the Gibbs Family Legacy,’ ” a lecture by former Delaware State University professor Dr. Gregory Scott about his research on the previously unknown history of Star-Hill, a black community in Kent County that began in the 1880s. The program will also feature former state Rep. Donald Blakey reading original poetry by Solomon Gibbs, a former resident and leader of Star-Hill. The program will take place at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 7 at The Old State House located at 25 The Green, in Dover.

On Saturdays, Feb. 7, 21 and 28, the John Dickinson Plantation, located at 340 Kitts Hummock Road in Dover, will offer special tours exploring the lives of African-Americans who lived in slavery and servitude at the home of John Dickinson, one of the founding fathers of the United States and “Penman of the Revolution.”

Finally, on Saturday, Feb. 21, between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., the Johnson Victrola Museum, located at 375 S. New St. in Dover, will present “Celebrating Love and Family: ‘The Story of Fats Waller,’ ” guided tours that focus on the life and achievements of the noted jazz musician, accompanied by Waller’s Victor recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines.

“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘The Story of Fats Waller’ ” will take place at the Johnson Victrola Museum on Feb. 21, 2015.

“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘The Story of Fats Waller’ ” will take place at the Johnson Victrola Museum on Feb. 21, 2015.

Special events, February 2015
Note:
Recent program changes are highlighted in brown.

Friday, Feb. 6, 2015
Concert by Bruce Anthony. Jazz guitarist. Presented in partnership with the Delaware Friends of Folk. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 7:30 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘Paul Robeson’s Family Ties and Contributions.’ ” African American History Month tours focus on the biography and family of bass vocalist Paul Robeson, and his achievements and political views as they pertain to his struggle as a 20th-century black artist. The program will feature Robeson’s Victor recordings 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. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘Follow the Drinking Gourd.’ ” African American History Month program for children Pre-K through 2nd grade focuses on Delaware’s involvement in the Underground Railroad and its many heroes who helped enslaved people escape to freedom. First Saturday in the First State program. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 11 a.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015
“A World Apart.” African-American-history-based tours. Learn about Dinah and her family and their journey from enslavement to freedom. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘The Roots of an African-American Family and Community—Star-Hill and the Gibbs Family Legacy.’ ” Lecture by Dr. Gregory Scott about his research on the previously unknown history of Star-Hill, an African-American community in Kent County that began in the 1880s. The program will also feature former state Rep. Donald Blakey reading original poetry by Solomon Gibbs, a former resident and leader of Star-Hill. First Saturday in the First State program. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 1 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015
“Follow the Drinking Gourd.” Interactive program for children Pre-K through 2nd grade focuses on Delaware’s involvement in the Underground Railroad and its many heroes who helped enslaved people escape to freedom. Partnership between the Dover Public Library and the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs. Dover Public Library, 35 Loockerman Plaza, Dover. 2 p.m. 302-736-7030.

Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015
“John Dickinson’s 207th Remembrance Day.” Program commemorating the death of John Dickinson explores 18th century mourning practices including a letter written in Dickinson’s memory by then President Thomas Jefferson. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Wreath laying ceremony at Samuel Dickinson’s gravesite at Noon. Program 11 a.m.–2 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘Finding African American Families in Kent County—1830–1860.’ ” Interactive workshop about recent research into the lives of 19th-century African Americans residing in Kent County, Del. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Workshop 1–3 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Inclement weather date: March 14, 2015. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations are required by calling 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015
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.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015
“Delaware’s Decades—the 1990s.” Program description TBA. Don Voltz, executive director of the Delaware Sports Museum and Hall of Fame, will discuss the planning and creation of the museum and its inductees. Part seven of an eight-part series exploring decades in Delaware’s history. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Program at 2 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but, due to space restrictions, reservations are required by calling 302-645-1148 no later than Feb.2, 2015. Note updated program information.

Friday, Feb. 20, 2015
McLane and Washington.” Living-history theatrical performance by Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs historical interpreter Tom Welch exploring the relationship between General George Washington and Col. Allen McLane, the Revolutionary War hero from Duck Creek (Smyrna, Del.). Partnership between the division and the Dover Public Library. Dover Public Library, 35 Loockerman Plaza, Dover. 7 p.m. 302-736-7030.

Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘Follow the Drinking Gourd.’ ” African American History Month program for children Pre-K through 2nd grade focuses on Delaware’s involvement in the Underground Railroad and its many heroes who helped enslaved people escape to freedom. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 11 a.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015
“Stories of Runaway Slaves.” African-American-history-based tours. Learn about three runaway slaves and how they escaped from St. Jones Neck. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘The Story of Fats Waller.’ ” African American History Month tours focus on the life and achievements of the noted jazz musician, accompanied by Waller’s Victor recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. Johnson Victrola Museum, 375 S. New St., Dover. Program 1–3 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Friday, Feb. 27, 2015
A Taste of Buena Vista.” Tour one of Delaware’s most historic houses and enjoy hors d’oeuvres and coffee accompanied by harp music. Buena Vista Conference Center, 661 S. Dupont Highway (Route 13), New Castle. 6–9 p.m. Admission $5 in advance by reservation through the Shop Delaware website (go to http://shop.delaware.gov and click the “events” link). 302-323-4430.

Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘Follow the Drinking Gourd.’ ” African American History Month program for children Pre-K through 2nd grade focuses on Delaware’s involvement in the Underground Railroad and its many heroes who helped enslaved people escape to freedom. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 11 a.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015
“A World Apart.” African-American-history-based tours. Learn about Violet Brown and read her recollections. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. Program 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m. 302-739-3277.

Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015
“Celebrating Love and Family: ‘The African-American Family in Slavery and Freedom—A Celebration of Love.’ ” Lecture by Dr. Gregory Scott on Herbert Gutman’s book The Black Family In Slavery and Freedom: 1750–1925.” The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Program at 1 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-744-5055.

“A Taste of Buena Vista” on Feb. 27, 2015

January 9th, 2015 by Jim Yurasek

One of Delaware’s most historic homes will host an evening of guided tours, refreshments and music during the program “A Taste of Buena Vista” that will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 27, 2015 at the Buena Vista mansion located at 661 S. Dupont Highway (Route 13), in New Castle, Del. Tickets for the event are $5 (free for children 10-years-old and under), and are available in advance only at the Shop Delaware website. (Go to http://shop.delaware.gov and click the “events” link). No tickets will be sold at the door. For additional information, call 302-323-4430.

Buena Vista

Buena Vista

“A Taste of Buena Vista” will feature guided tours of the historic mansion, plus hors d’oeuvres from Newark’s Caffe Gelato and a variety of coffee options from Pike Creek Roasterie presented by Penn’s Place Coffee Shop in New Castle. Live harp music will be performed throughout the evening’s festivities.

The main section of the Buena Vista mansion was built between 1845 and 1847 by John M. Clayton, United States secretary of state from 1849 to 1850 under presidents Taylor and Fillmore, and United States senator from 1829 to 1836, 1845 to 1849, and 1853 until his death in 1856. The home later became the residence of C. Douglass Buck, governor of Delaware from 1929 to 1937 and United States senator from 1942 to 1948. Buena Vista and its grounds were donated to the state by the Buck family in 1965 and now serve as a conference center administered by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs.

Division to offer programs at the Dover Public Library

December 22nd, 2014 by Jim Yurasek

Beginning in January 2015, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be offering a variety of public programs at the Dover Public Library located at 35 Loockerman Plaza in Dover. The programs, which will include first-person historical interpretation, lectures and children’s activities, are part of the division’s outreach efforts in communities across the state. All programs, which are listed below, are free and open to the public. For additional information, contact the division at 302-744-5055 or the Dover Public Library at 302-736-7030.

Division historical interpreter Dennis Fisher will be performing in the program “Lost By One Vote” on Jan. 10, 2015.

Division historical-interpreter Dennis Fisher will be performing in the programs “Lost By One Vote” on Jan. 10, 2015 and “The Doctor Is In” on June 19, 2015.

The launch of the division’s Dover Public Library programs will coincide with the opening of “Changing America: The Emancipation Proclamation, 1863 and the March on Washington, 1963,” a traveling version of the Smithsonian Museum exhibit that will be on display at the library from Jan. 10 to Feb. 20, 2015. The exhibit explores two great moments in American history—separated by 100 years—when individuals united and took courageous steps to fulfill the promise of democracy. The grand opening of the exhibit will take place on Saturday, Jan. 10 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and will include an 11 a.m. performance of “Lost By One Vote,” a program in which division historical-interpreters Tom Welch and Dennis Fisher take on the personas of prominent Delaware congressmen Nathaniel B. Smithers and James A. Bayard Jr. as they debate Abraham Lincoln’s Compensated Emancipation Plan of 1862 that would have abolished slavery in Delaware.

In addition to the public programming, a large number of art works from the collections of the state of Delaware are currently on display in the library including several paintings by Hispanic artists from the Norma Varisco de García Collection which was donated to the state in 2012.

“Boya Nayel” by Michel Angel Guzman, Puerto Rico, 1984. From the Norma Varisco de García Collection of the state of Delaware. The work is currently on display at the Dover Public Library.

“Boya Nayel” by Michel Angel Guzman, Puerto Rico, 1984. From the Norma Varisco de García Collection of the state of Delaware. The work is currently on display at the Dover Public Library.

Upcoming division-sponsored programs at the Dover Public Library include:

Saturday, Jan. 10, 2015
“Lost By One Vote.” Division historical interpreters Tom Welch and Dennis Fisher take on the personas of prominent Delaware congressmen Nathaniel B. Smithers and James A. Bayard Jr. as they debate Abraham Lincoln’s Compensated Emancipation Plan of 1862 that would have abolished slavery in Delaware. 11 a.m.

Monday, Jan. 19, 2015
“Local Profiles of Courage for the Struggle for Freedom.” Three-part program beginning with a lecture at the Dover Public Library on the Underground Railroad in Delaware, followed by the “Tales of Slavery and Freedom” walking tour and ending with a “Freedom Tour” at The Old State House that highlights the lives of James Summers and Samuel D. Burris. 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Saturday, Feb. 14, 2015
“Follow the Drinking Gourd.” Interactive program for children Pre-K through 2nd grade focuses on Delaware’s involvement in the Underground Railroad and its many heroes who helped slaves escape to freedom. 2 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 20, 2015
McLane and Washington.” Living-history theatrical performance by division historical interpreter Tom Welch exploring the relationship between General George Washington and Col. Allen McLane, the Revolutionary War hero from Duck Creek (Smyrna, Del.). 7 p.m.

Friday, April 17, 2015
‘Over There’: How Victor’s Musical Industry Influenced the Nation During World War I.” Two-part program begins with a lecture on the contributions of the Victor Talking Machine Company to the war effort to be presented at the Dover Public Library, followed by a presentation at the Johnson Victrola Museum on Victor’s World War I era recordings played on authentic Victor Talking Machines. 7 p.m.

Saturday, April 18, 2015
“The Story of Dinah.” Program explores the life and craft of Dinah Patten, an accomplished spinner and enslaved person owned by the John Dickinson family. A hands-on activity will accompany the program in which the audience learns how to prepare wool for spinning. 2 p.m.

Friday, June 19, 2015
The Doctor Is In.” Living-history theatrical performance by division historical interpreter Dennis Fisher exploring the life and times of Dr. James Sykes, an 18th to 19th-century Dover physician. 7 p.m.

 

 


First State National Historical Park to be created

December 19th, 2014 by Jim Yurasek

In a ceremony held at the New Castle Court House on Dec. 18, 2014, Delaware Gov. Jack Markell, U.S. Sen. Tom Carper and U.S. Rep. John Carney celebrated the imminent creation of Delaware’s first national park which will shine a spotlight on the state’s early Dutch, Swedish and English settlements and its role in the events leading up to the founding of the United States as a nation.

Proposed sites of the First State National Historical Park.

Proposed sites of the First State National Historical Park.

Earlier in the month, the U.S. House of Representatives, followed by the U.S. Senate, passed legislation that authorizes the First State National Monument to be renamed the First State National Historical Park and expands the current national monument to include park sites in all three counties of Delaware. The language that was passed mirrors bills introduced by Sens. Carper and Chris Coons and Rep. Carney—the First State National Historical Park Act of 2013. The approved legislation now goes to President Obama for his signature.

Created in 2013, the First State National Monument is comprised of three historic areas including the state-owned New Castle Court House and Green which are administered by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs; the Woodlawn property in the Brandywine Valley; and the Dover Green. Monument headquarters (currently closed to the public) are located in the Sheriff’s House, a former division property that was transferred to the federal government in 2013 as part of the process of creating the national monument.

The newly created national historical park will include all of those sites plus the following: Old Swedes Church National Historic Landmark in Wilmington, the Ryves-Holt House in Lewes and two more sites administered by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs—Fort Christina National Historic Landmark in Wilmington and the John Dickinson Plantation in Dover. The National Park Service will continue to make its headquarters in the Sheriff’s House in New Castle.

The John Dickinson Plantation will be one of the sites added to the First State National Historical Park.

The John Dickinson Plantation will be one of the sites added to the First State National Historical Park.

In a written statement, Sen. Carper noted, “For over a decade, I have been working with federal officials, state officials, community leaders and everyday citizens to establish a national park in Delaware. I thank my colleagues in the House and Senate for approving this legislation. Now, Delaware has a national park that preserves and teaches the lessons of our state’s heritage and our country’s history. I cannot wait for the day when families from all across this country and the world will plan their vacations around the First State National Historical Park to learn how Delaware helped launch the most enduring experiment in democracy that the world has ever known—the United States of America.”

U.S. Sen. Tom Carper speaking at the celebration marking the creation of the First State National Historical Park. Flanking Carper are (left) U.S. Rep. John Carney and Delaware Gov. Jack Markell.

U.S. Sen. Tom Carper speaking at the celebration marking the creation of the First State National Historical Park. Flanking Carper are (left) U.S. Rep. John Carney and Delaware Gov. Jack Markell.

For press accounts on the creation of the First State National Historical Park, go to the following:

Delaware celebrates national park…finally
News Journal, Wilmington, Del.—Dec. 18, 2014

Delaware celebrates state’s first national park
WDEL Radio, Wilmington, Del.—Dec. 18, 2014

Delaware Officials Celebrate National Park
ABC News, New York, N.Y.—Dec. 18, 2014

Delaware’s long road to a National Park
Newsworks, WHYY TV 12, Wilmington, Del.—Dec. 18, 2014

Unknowns In Terms Of Funding And Personnel Await New Units Of National Park System
National Parks Traveler, Park City, Utah—Dec. 15, 2014

Delaware national park expansion clears Congress
News Journal, Wilmington, Del.—Dec. 12, 2014

First State now to be home of a National Park
WDDE Radio, Dover, Del.—Dec. 12, 2014

Sen. Carper Addresses Defense Policy Bill
WBOC TV, Salisbury, Del.—Dec. 12, 2014

For Delaware, a national park upgrade
News Journal, Wilmington, Del.—Dec. 8, 2014

Division salutes staff, volunteers, partners and friends at end-of-the-year success event

December 18th, 2014 by Jim Yurasek

During an end-of-the-year success event on Dec. 15, 2014, Delaware Secretary of State Jeffrey W. Bullock and Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs Director Tim Slavin paid tribute to the staff, volunteers, partners and friends who helped make 2014 an award-winning year for the division.

Division staff, volunteers, partners and friends at the end-of-the-year success event on Dec. 15, 2014.

Division staff, volunteers, partners and friends at the end-of-the-year success event on Dec. 15, 2014.

As part of his presentation, Slavin noted the progress that had been made in implementing the division’s strategic plan for fiscal years 2015 to 2019 which was released on Jan. 27, 2014. Accomplishments include completion of the “common look and feel” for the division’s website, compilation of an agency-wide staff directory that identifies employees’ special skills and talents, development of a staff-recognition program, completion of a five-year exhibit schedule and the development of team budgets. In addition, development of a marketing/communication plan and implementation of the division’s disaster-preparedness plan are currently underway.

Slavin also spotlighted the numerous awards that the division had received in 2014 including four honors from the American Association for State and Local History—the  Award of Merit and History in Progress Award that the agency shared with the Delaware Historical Society for their collaborative exhibit “Forging Faith, Building Freedom: African American Faith Experiences in Delaware, 1800-1980”; the Award of Merit that the agency received for “The DeBraak and Its Atlantic World”; and the division’s successful graduation from the association’s StEPs program (Standards and Excellence Program for History Organizations). The division also successfully completed the Core Documents Verification Program, a key component of its efforts to receive accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums.

Division awards on display at the end-of-the-year success event.

Division awards on display at the end-of-the-year success event.

After the review of agency accomplishments, Slavin welcomed staff members who have joined the division during 2014 including Morgan Booker, Marian Carpenter, Carlton Hall, Charity Luksha, James Scott, Desiree Williams and Rachel Wootten; and presented staff service-awards to Dianna Harris for 30+ years of service, Manny Carrar and Jim Yurasek for 25+ years, Ed Gillespie for 15+ years and Michael Cinque for 5+ years.

Division accountant Dianna Harris honored for 30+ years of service to the state of Delaware. At right is division director Tim Slavin.

Division accountant Dianna Harris honored for 30+ years of service to the state of Delaware. At right is division director Tim Slavin.

Volunteer-service certificates were awarded to Arnold Leftwich for 697.5 volunteer hours, Charolenne Shehorn (609 hours), Kent Slavin (606 hours) Howard Fulcher (602 hours), Jim Schilling (407.5 hours), David Perlmutter (294 hours), Laura Herbin (218.5 hours), Gene Modzelewski (157 hours), Caroline Dworkin (115 hours), Carolyn Apple (114.5 hours), Valarie Shorter (87 hours) and Larry Watkins (83.5 hours). Ed Gillespie, the division’s physical-plant maintenance supervisor, was also honored as the Delaware Department of State’s Employee of the Third Quarter, and former staff members Ken Darsney and Jenna Reynolds were thanked for their service.

Division volunteers honored at the end-of-the-year success event. (From left) Larry Watkins, Valarie Shorter, David Perlmutter, Carolyn Apple, Laura Herbin, Jim Schilling, Caroline Dworkin, Gene Modzelewski, Arnold Leftwich and Howard Fulcher. Division director Tim Slavin is at the far right.

Division volunteers honored at the end-of-the-year success event. (From left) Larry Watkins, Valarie Shorter, David Perlmutter, Carolyn Apple, Laura Herbin, Jim Schilling, Caroline Dworkin, Gene Modzelewski, Arnold Leftwich and Howard Fulcher. Division director Tim Slavin is at the far right.

Division partners and friends who were recognized were Yancey and Dave Hillegas and Kevin Phillips of the Bethel Historical Society; Florence Davis, Nancy Jodlbauer and Jim Whisman of the New Castle Historical Society; Michele Restucci, Deanna Rishell and Sarah Zimmerman of the First State Heritage Park; Kendel Jones and Dr. Akwasi Osei, former members of the State Review Board for Historic Preservation; Pat Lawson a trustee of the Hebron Methodist Protestant Church that has been nominated for placement on the National Register of Historic Places; and Danielle Patton, Bill Rieker and Kevin Wright of the Delaware Department of Technology and Information.

 

 


Division gets help for improvements at historic Darley and Hale-Byrnes houses

December 18th, 2014 by Jim Yurasek

In recent months, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs has received assistance from a variety of sources for repairs and improvements at two state-owned properties that are administered by the division—the Darley House located at 3701 Philadelphia Pike in Claymont and the Hale-Byrnes House located at 606 Stanton-Christiana Road in Newark.

Darley House

Darley House

Darley House
At the Darley House, Delmarva Power installed a line, at no charge to the state, which can be used for delivering natural gas to the site. As part of the installation process, the utility company worked closely with division staff and the property’s tenant, the Claymont Renaissance Development Corporation, to accommodate archaeological monitoring at this National Register of Historic Places-listed site that once served as the home of noted 19th century illustrator Felix O. C. Darley.

Thanks to efforts by state Rep. Dennis E. Williams, Delaware’s Sustainable Energy Utility conducted an energy audit at Darley House. Williams then led efforts in the Delaware General Assembly that resulted in funding for a variety of improvements at the site including air sealing, weather stripping, chimney pointing, insulating select areas of the building and replacement of several incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs. Willams also helped secure funding for the construction of a fence along the property’s northern boundary and a connecting path from the adjacent property’s parking lot to Darley House.

This assistance was particularly helpful as it took place during a time when the division was already involved in repairing the property after a spring hail-storm damaged the house’s siding, wood trim, flashings, gutters, and main and porch roofs.

Hale-Byrnes House
The Delaware Society for the Preservation of Antiquities, a nonprofit historic-preservation organization and tenant at the Hale-Byrnes House, sponsored repairs to the brick pathway and stairs leading from the parking lot to the house’s front entrance. These improvements will help to ensure safe access to this National Register of Historic Places-listed home built in 1750 and used in 1777 as a meeting place for Gen. George Washington and his staff between the Battle of Cooch’s Bridge in Delaware and the Battle of Brandywine in Pennsylvania.

Hale-Byrnes House

Hale-Byrnes House