On Aug 26, 2020, Terry Wright, chair of the Eastern Brandywine Hundred Coordinating Council, presented Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs Director Tim Slavin with a check for $22,000 for the preservation of Weldin House located at 302 Philadelphia Pike north of Wilmington. The property is owned by the State of Delaware and administered by the division.
The Eastern Brandywine Hundred Coordinating Council is a tax-exempt 501(c)(4) social-welfare organization that assists the communities of eastern Brandywine Hundred, New Castle County, Del. through a variety of initiatives. As part of its activities, the council promotes the study of the history of the area; identifies properties, structures and natural resources of significant historical, cultural or natural interest; and establishes plans for their preservation. Since its grant program began in 2015, the council has provided $46,790 in funds for local history and historic preservation in its service area.
In an Aug. 26, 2020 Facebook post, Wright wrote, “This grant represents the community’s commitment to working with the Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs to preserve a much-loved part of Brandywine Hundred’s history. Special thanks to Senator Harris McDowell and Representative Deb Heffernan and County Councilman John Cartier for their dedication and persistence in working with the community to preserve The Weldin House and make it a vibrant part of the neighborhood once again. Without their efforts, and particularly Deb’s leadership, the house would have been lost to history.”
Thanks to an appropriation from the Delaware General Assembly, the division began rehabilitation work on the historic property in 2019. The original section of the house was built circa 1790 and was enlarged on several occasions by succeeding generations of the Weldin family who became some of the most prosperous farmers in Brandywine Hundred. The house began to fall into disrepair in the second half of the 20th century with deterioration continuing until repairs began in recent years.
The division’s efforts at the property thus far include development of an assessment with recommendations for how to rehabilitate the building for future use, site clean-up of rubble and construction debris, repair of the parking lot, land management, re-establishment of utility service and treatment of lead paint and asbestos.