On Jan. 30, 2017, the National Park Service announced that the city of New Castle had been accorded the status of a Certified Local Government. Part of a nationwide effort, the Certified Local Government Program in Delaware is administered by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs’ State Historic Preservation Office in partnership with the Park Service. The program strengthens preservation efforts at the local-level by providing technical and financial assistance while encouraging successful preservation programs and practices. Delaware now has seven Certified Local Governments: Delaware City, Dover, Lewes, Milton, city of New Castle, New Castle County and the city of Wilmington.
Founded by the Dutch under Peter Stuyvesant in 1651, the town that would later be called New Castle served as Delaware’s Colonial and state capital from 1704 until 1777. The city’s well-preserved historic district retains many original structures built between 1698 and 1873 representing a wide variety of architectural styles including Dutch Colonial, Georgian, Federal and Greek Revival. Two division-administered properties—the New Castle Court House Museum and The Green—are components of the First State National Historical Park which has its headquarters in Delaware’s original capital city.
In April 2016, the division completed a year-long, $350,000 capital improvement project at four properties that it administers in New Castle—the Court House, Green, Arsenal and Academy. In June of that same year, the agency was recognized for its efforts as the recipient of the New Castle Historical Society’s 2016 Bamberger Historic Preservation Award.
For information about the New Castle Historic District National Historic Landmark, as well as individual New Castle properties listed in the National Register of Historic Places, go to Delaware’s Cultural and Historical Resources Information System (CHRIS). Go to the following for information on the city of New Castle’s Historic Area Commission and its design guidelines and standards for exterior alterations of existing buildings and new construction in the city’s historic district.