In 1814 the War of 1812 was entering into its second full year. During the previous year the Chesapeake Bay and the Delaware Valley region experienced active naval campaigning and a seaborne blockade. On Saturday, January 3, at 10:30 a.m. historian Charles (Chuck) Fithian will visit the Delaware Public Archives to present a program on this little known period of Delaware history. Delawareans were active participants in these events and directly experienced the effects of naval irregular warfare. In 1814, they would continue to aid in the national defense, and would respond to new threats brought about by this destructive war.
Mr. Fithian, a resident of Dover, is an historical archaeologist who has directed the research and conservation of the DeBraak and its large associated collection. With a concentration in colonial, military and naval history, Fithian is a graduate of Wesley College and Salisbury University, and has recently retired from the State of Delaware after more than 27 years of service. He has also conducted extensive research on 17th century Delaware, the Delaware Regiment during the American Revolution, and the War of 1812.
The program is free to the public and will last approximately one hour. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Katelyn Fair (302) 744-5016 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tom Summers, Outreach Services Manager
One of the joys of working at the Delaware Public Archives is discovering interesting documents that have not been processed until now and has not been seen for hundreds of years. Recently, I blogged about a Kent County Orphans Court plot that was more than 25 feet long which was found by archivist Margaret Dunham. Now working in Sussex County Orphans Court records, Margaret called me again when she found the document seen in the picture below. The image shows the 1807 plot of Jacob Burton from Dagsboro Hundred. Unlike most similar documents in the Archives’ collections, this plot features color and actually shows a portion of the plot that resembles the shape of the State of Delaware. The Delaware shaped portion is referred to in the document as “Hog Range.” Take a look and decide for yourself! Within this record (dated 1807 – 1822), Mr. Burton is leaving his divided estate to his wife Sophia and thirteen children and grandchildren.