During the month of August 2019, the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs will be sponsoring 15 special programs at sites across the state. A full schedule is included below. Except where noted, all programs are free and open to the public.
Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs special events, August 2019
Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019
“Campfire at the John Dickinson Plantation.” Join staff around the campfire and play a game of Jeopardy based on the St. Jones Reserve and John Dickinson. Presented in partnership with the St. Jones Reserve. John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Road, Dover. 7 p.m. Admission free but reservations required by calling the St. Jones Reserve at 302-739-6377 or by e-mailing email@example.com.
Thursdays, Aug. 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29, 2019
“Lost Off Lewes: The British Warship DeBraak.” Guided tour explores the history, artifacts and surviving hull section of this 18th-century shipwreck. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. 9 a.m. Limited seating. Admission $10 (cash or check only). For reservations, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 302-645-1148.
Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019
“From Tinfoil to the 78.” Guided tours explore the origins of recorded music from the earliest tinfoil phonographs of Thomas Edison to the Victrola of Eldridge Reeves Johnson’s Victor Talking Machine Company while discovering the brilliant inventors and engineers who took recorded music from a novelty to a daily part of life. Accompanied by 78-rpm records 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. 302-739-3262.
Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019
“The Doctor Is In.” Living-history theatrical performance by Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs historical interpreter Dennis Fisher exploring the life and times of Dr. James Sykes, an 18th to 19th-century Dover physician and statesman who served as Delaware’s governor for a short period. 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. 302-744-5054.
Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019
Fourth annual “Movie Night at Buena Vista.” Outdoor screening of the DreamWorks film “How to Train Your Dragon—The Hidden World” on the grounds of one of Delaware’s most historic estates, plus fun from the Professor Looney Photo Booth and tasty treats from Kona Ice of Elkton/Newark and the Plum Pit Food Truck. Guests are encouraged to bring a picnic, blankets, lawn chairs and bug spray. Buena Vista: A Delaware Country Estate, 661 S. Dupont Highway (Route 13), New Castle. Grounds open at 6:30 p.m. Film begins at 8:15 p.m. 302-323-4430.
Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019
“Many Declarations of Independence.” Historical interpreter Bob Vander Decker will display and discuss the many printed forms of the Declaration of Independence since 1776. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St., New Castle. Program at 2 p.m. Museum open 1:30–4:30 p.m. 302-323-4453.
Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019
“The Scorched Pamphlet: Sherlock Holmes Returns to Delaware.” Theatrical performance in which Sherlock Holmes, on his second trip to the First State, is called upon to solve a grisly case at Delaware College. Holmes and Watson are now in a race against time, a reluctant administration and impossible odds to solve one of Delaware’s unsolved mysteries. Based on the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and an actual New Castle court case. Presented in coordination with Dover Comic Con. The Old State House, 25 The Green, Dover. Programs at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Museum open 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission but visitors are encouraged to arrive early to ensure seating. 302-744-5054.
Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019
“Voters at Last: Battling for the Ballot.” Historian and writer Mike Dixon presents a lively program on the history of women’s suffrage in Delaware. New Castle Court House Museum, 211 Delaware St. New Castle. Program at 2 p.m. Museum open 1:30–4:30 p.m. Free admission but reservations are requested by calling the museum at 302-323-4453.
Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2019
“The Greatest Captain in the World.” Johann Steinke, captain of the schooner A.J. Meerwald, New Jersey’s official tall ship, will read his children’s book comprised of maritime stories written in real sailor vocabulary. Partnership between the Zwaanendael Museum and the Meerwald as part of the ship’s schedule of sailing trips from Lewes. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. Reading at 11 a.m. Museum open 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. 302-645-1148.
Friday, Aug. 30, 2019
Lewes Maritime History Sail. Take a trip on the schooner A.J. Meerwald, New Jersey’s official tall ship, as historical interpreters from the Zwaanendael Museum share maritime stories about the Cape Henlopen region including Cape Henlopen Lighthouse, the early Zwaanendael whaling colony and the sinking and recovery of the British warship DeBraak. Partnership between the museum and the Meerwald. Trip departs from the Lewes Ferry Terminal, 43 Cape Henlopen Drive, Lewes. 10 a.m. Discount of $2 for museum patrons by using promo code ZDE2019 when purchasing tickets. Advance purchase recommended. 856-785-2060.
Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019
“Lost Off Lewes: The British Warship DeBraak.” Guided tour explores the history, artifacts and surviving hull section of this 18th-century shipwreck. Zwaanendael Museum, 102 Kings Highway, Lewes. 5 p.m. Limited seating. Admission $10 (cash or check only). For reservations, e-mail email@example.com or call 302-645-1148.
Administered by the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs, the five museums of the State of Delaware—the John Dickinson Plantation, the Johnson Victrola Museum, the New Castle Court House Museum, The Old State House and the Zwaanendael Museum—tell the story of the First State’s contributions to the history and culture of the United States. Through tours, exhibits, school programs and hands-on activities, the museums shine a spotlight on Delaware’s unique history and the diverse people who came to live there. The museums are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. The New Castle Court House Museum and the John Dickinson Plantation are partner sites of the First State National Historical Park. The Old State House is located on the Dover Green, another partner site of the park. Go to the following for a comprehensive, long-term calendar of division-sponsored events.