Wilmington, DE Real Estate News

By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
This afternoon, I headed out for a walk to see if anything had changed since my last walk. I knew the County said they were fencing playgrounds and discouraging group play.  Back in the 1950's, when they built these houses, each neighborhood had a small park or two. We got two because there was a winding creek (a tributary of Shellpot Creek which leads to the Brandywine Creek) and some marshy land that was probably considered un-buildable. Checking out the park with a playground, it looked as if they decided that the playground equipment and the tennis courts didn't need any modifications.  Then, crossing the creek to the basketball court, I found the only change: no hoops on the backboard (if that's what you call it). There had been complaints in the past about noisy activity after dar...
Comments 4
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Yes, I live in the well-populated area of Brandywine Hundred outside of the City of Wilmington, Delaware. But it is an area which honors its history. Highland Farms, an organic market, is just down the road from me and across the street from Brandywine High School.  How did the Webster family farm manage to survive amid suburbia? The story is that Clark Webster purchased the land in 1832, and as was common at the time, the deed was written on deerskin.  At that time it was mostly rocky pasture.  In 1835, Clark's son, Isaac, began clearing the land and planting crops. John Webster gave the farm the name Highland Orchards, officially, when he was registering his Guernsey milking herd in 1940. His daughter, Ruth Linton, and her family still own and manage the farm and market store. They gr...
Comments 4
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Today I visited Bellevue State Park in North Wilmington. The crowd in the main parking lot drove me to park near the tennis courts (they are waiving entrance fees at present).  On over 28 acres of land, this former duPont estate and 1830 Mt. Pleasant School building were given to the State in 1976.It has become a favorite place for the walking track, a pond for fishing (toss back), garden plots, summer concerts, horse training facility, and you can rent the mansion for events.   Since there were a lot of people spread out and families with kids and bikes, it wasn't too hard to keep the 6' safe area around as I walked on the trails. It was just a little chilly (below 60 degrees) but sunny, so a perfect day.  A fisherman told me that the previous Saturday was even more crowded. And there ...
Comments 3
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
A new "organic" grocery store, "Sprouts," has opened this week in North Wilmington (or Brandywine Hundred, the historic name). Since we really don't have a lot of sources of entertainment after all the museums and theaters have closed, they had a good number of people yesterday. The other end of the parking lot at Concord Mall with its retail stores, looked almost deserted, compared to the food market (formerly a Barnes and Noble book store). So what is different?  The specials that were advertised, such as Sockeye Salmon and avocados, looked good (actually the salmon also tasted great). The pre-sliced cheese was twice the price of the nearby farmer's market. Good news: They gave me $.05 for using my own tote bag, and they printed the receipt on both sides of the tape (so it was not a f...
Comments 5
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
My favorite perennial flower is the Hellebore, or Lenten Rose, a late winter bloomer that is a member of the Buttercup family. This morning I started cleaning up one of the 3 planting beds in my back and front yards that become more crowded with Hellebores every year. Not that I mind them spreading their seeds, as long as they stay roughly in the same area. Nurseries say they do well in shade (check) but leaves can become dry and tattered over the winter if not covered by snow (check--no snow this year in Delaware).  So it's these ratty looking leaves which I have been trimming. The reward is that the blooms are hiding under the ugly stuff along with fallen oak leaves which I grab out by the handfuls. Not that I would try this, but apparently the roots are "strongly emetic and potential...
Comments 3
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
You know I am a history junkie when I get charged up over  the only Revolutionary War battle fought in Delaware, the September 3, 1777 Battle of Cooch's Bridge.  Remarkably, the home (photo)  that served as headqarters for Colonial General Wm. Maxwell, then British General Cornwallis was in the Cooch family for 9 generations. Legend says that Betsy Ross' flag first flew here at the Battle in Newark, Delaware (note: I said legend) Today, I attended the George Washington Society of Delaware's annual toast to Washington and program honoring the Cooch Family, owners of the Circa 1760 house since it was built.  Over a year ago, the property and 10 acres were donated to Delaware's Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs by the Cooch Family. Delaware being Delaware, I knew Ned Cooch, an at...
Comments 7
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
There is a house in the Wilmington, Delaware area that would win a Christmas decorating contest every year--except there is no contest.For over 30 years, the Smith family on Prior Rd. has been mounting a display with over 700,000 lights that can be seen by traffic on nearby Interstate 95. Two years ago, Thomas Smith passed away, but his wife and family have continued the tradition in his memory. The house next door to them has also joined the celebration by putting up a slightly smaller in scale display one can see by walking down Prior Rd.I go every Christmas Eve after attending the Candlelight Christmas Eve service at my church, and there is always a steady stream of cars. This year,  some young men were directing each other to pose for pictures, using a language I could not recognize...
Comments 5
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Eleuthere Irenee Du Pont arrived at the site of Eleutherian Mills on the Brandywine River outside of Wilmington, Delaware in the spring of 1802 to begin the construction of a black powder mill, barn, and a home for his family along the Brandywine Creek. His wife and three children joined him in July 1802, and by 1803, the residence was complete. Their home served as a center of business and social life at Eleutherian Mills for years to come.Today, visitors to Eleutherian Mills and the adjacent Hagley Museum and Library  find a National Historic Landmark home which has survived despite being located on a hill overlooking a site that has seen 288 explosions from the black powder operations leading to the deaths of 228 people until the operations ceased in 1921. (Photo -far right is former...
Comments 2
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
DELAWARE EVENTSLombardy Hall is the colonial home of Gunning Bedford, Jr, one of the Delaware signers of the U.S. Constitution. They will be holding their annual Open House on Saturday, December 7 and Sunday, December 8 from 1-4 PM. Lombardy Hall is a National Historic Landmark home c 1750 in North Wilmington at 1611 Concord Pike.  Lombardy is usually open only by appointment. Located between Independence Mall and Lombardy Cemetery.  Yuletide at Winterthur is now open until January 5 daily from 10 AM to 5:30 PM. Please get reservations in advance which are available only by calling 800-448-3883.  I just did the Yuletide tour and can strongly advise getting reservations ahead of time, because it was VERY busy. Their theme this year was bringing back favorites from the past tours. As alwa...
Comments 3
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
THE LATEST NEWS FROM BRANDYWINE HUNDRED It's a sunny morning, so why not use my apple coupon to go to Marini's Market on Veale Rd. in Brandywine Hundred (Colonial name) or North Wilmington (modern name).Not only did I find my Gala apples, but the Marini family seems to have gone all out or somebody took a marketing course and learned how to create a great fall display of mums and pumpkins!It goes to show that you can always learn something new about how to market your business. I hope it works for the Marinis and that their pet pig enjoys being next to all that color (can pigs even see color?). Norman the pig picture from a couple of weeks ago before the pumpkin blitz.  Want to learn about homes in Brandywine Hundred? Contact Carolyn Roland.
Comments 0
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
After many years of neglect, the Forwood School has met a sad fate, the bulldozer. The land had been donated by Forwood ancestors for a school in 1799. It was believed to be the oldest extant building in the original 13 states that had been used for a school. This strikes me as such a sad sign that the almighty dollar still rules when a developer sees dollar signs when preservationists see our living past being destroyed. As a preservationist and homeowner in the adjacent neighborhood, South Graylyn Crest, this strikes me especially hard.  And I really don't look forward to seeing the small stone structure (from the sketch presented at a well attended meeting 4 years ago, it looks like a stone outhouse) they say they will build in memory of the Forwood School. Plans had been submitted f...
Comments 0
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
DELAWARE EVENTS Let Freedom Ring Ceremony-This annual July 4 event will take place this year at the New Castle Presbyterian Church, 25 E. 2nd St., New Castle.  Each year over 100,000 Americans participate all over the country. The guest speaker will be Syl Woodford, who will speak on Black Loyalists and Patriots of the American Revolution. . Everyone is requested to be in the church by 1:25 p.m.  18th C. garb is encouraged, and patriotic music will reign. Church bells will ring at 2 p.m. and then 13 children, (last year's photo) representing the 13 colonies will ring a smaller bell donated by the Courthouse Museum. For more information email Kim Burdick. Thursday, July 4, 2019 from 2-7 p.m. come to the  Tubman Garret Riverfront Park for the City of Wilmington’s 4th of July Celebration. ...
Comments 2
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
 Looking out of my kitchen window this morning, I was pleased to see my new Vivienne Clematis has bloomed. I love the large purple flowers, especially since my other Clematis turned out to have tiny purple blooms.   My hot red/orange poppies needed some brassy neighbors, and I think Vivienne is going to give them a run for their money.  Not that the bluestars don't think they are the most glorious flowers in the garden! They keep spreading their wings  and crowding out other plants every year, probably looking for global domination.
Comments 9
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
DELAWARE EVENTS  The Antiques Market at Silver Hill in historic Milford on Saturday, May 4 from 9 am to 3 pm on the lawn of the Parson Thorne Mansion 501 NW Front St.  Dealers from Delaware and Maryland are selling antiques, vintage and collectibles!  The Milford Garden Club will hold their annual plant sale at the May market. For more information: email parsonthorne@gmail.com.  Admission is $1 for adults and includes a guided tour of the Parson Thorne Mansion. The 86th Annual Dover Days Festival, one of Delaware’s largest and longest-running free events, is Saturday, May 4 from 9:30-3 p.m.  This is easily the biggest parade in Kent County, with Delaware’s Governor serving as Grand Marshal. Included are traditional maypole dancing, games, a moon bounce village, craft and food vendors, m...
Comments 3
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
Today was the 15th annual sheep shearing day and herb sale at historic Greenbank Mills and Phillips Farm in Wilmington, Delaware.  I had not been to the Mill in many years, and was anxious to meet the sheep and the people who volunteer to staff the complex.  The first mill at Greenbank was reportedly called the Swede’s Mill dating from 1677. Not much is known of this mill except a vague description and undeciphered archaeological remains. In the 1760’s, the present gristmill was built as a merchant mill to export flour. According to local legend, George Washington posted a guard at the mill when American troops took up positions along the Red Clay Creek after the Battle of Cooches Bridge.. Surviving the centuries, the mill suffered a devastating fire in 1969, then Hurricane Floyd wreake...
Comments 4
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
  It's been about 4 years since I planted my Flowering Quince ("Double Take Orange Storm") and a Spirea bush in the back of my yard. Every year I inspect it after the Spirea (photo) next to it blooms. I had loved the combination of 2 plants in Winterthur's Sundial Garden, and hoped to get a similar effect.   The Spirea was quick to bloom after the first year, but the Quince only had tiny blooms before. But, voila! This year the Quince has flowers large enough to see from the top of the hill. This variety does not have any noticeable fruits or thorns, it just wants to be admired for its colorful blossoms. They grow in zones 5 to 9, and Delaware is in zone 7. The blooms are supposed to appear before the leaves, but this does not seem to apply to my variety.So I am very happy to see this t...
Comments 4
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
DELAWARE EVENTS At 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 4,   “The Constitutional Convention and Ratification” will be the subject of New Castle Court House Museum historical interpreter Nicole Worthley. She will explore the debates, compromises and writing of the U.S. Constitution during the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787. Complimentary coffee and cookies provided. Part one of a series of lectures on the U. S. Constitution at the State House,  25 The Green, Dover.  302-744-5054. Thursday–Sunday, April 5–14, 2019 you can join the Lewes Tulip Celebration. Series of activities at downtown Lewes locations including the Zwaanendael Museum, located at 102 Kings Highway, where tulip arrangements by the Sussex Gardeners and tours will be offered. Sponsored by the Lewes Chamber of Com...
Comments 2
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
 Thank goodness for the Balkans and China for propagating my favorite late winter-early spring flowering plants, the Hellebores.   Some people call them winter roses, Christmas Roses, or Lenten Roses, but they are not members of the rose family. I can't remember exactly when I first saw them, but I'm sure it was after I moved to the Mid-Atlantic area from Chicago many years ago.  You can usually tell how mild winter has been by how soon they bloom. Since the Hellebores in my garden are just putting on their show in March and not in January, that may explain why I am especially glad to see them finally strut their stuff.  The particular grouping pictured must really like their location, since they have been self-seeding for many years now in their shady location under a large yew bush.  ...
Comments 5
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
PENNSYLVANIA EVENTS The Federal Presence in Philadelphia. The Athenaeum will host an exhibition of sketches, watercolors, prints, architectural drawings and photographs that document two hundred years of Philadelphia buildings that were commissioned by the Federal Government as well as those that housed federal offices. From Independence Square to custom houses, post offices and military installations, this show will reveal the surprising and lasting architectural imprint the Federal Government has made on the City of Brotherly Love.  Exhibition Dates: January 28-April 26, 2019. Free Admission. 216 S. 6th St., Philadelphia. The Paoli Battlefield Preservation Fund will present "George Washington: First Entrepreneur: How George Washington Built His – and the Nation’s – Prosperity" with Ed...
Comments 3
By Carolyn Roland-Historic Homes For Sale In Delaware and S. Chester County PA, Carolyn Roland, GRI, CRS
(Patterson-Schwartz Real Estate)
The great snowstorm is supposed to be heading our way, so I headed to that place with all the needed supplies. If you are thinking grocery store, you are wrong. I usually have a plentiful supply of food in the house, with all the leftovers I freeze, and my extra stash of canned goods.  THE LIBRARY is where I head to stock up on BOOKS!Our county government decided back when the real estate market was high and they were making lots of money on transfer taxes that they would build us a big new library on a plot of land near my house. There already was an historic house on the land (the house still sits there neglected), so they built a dog park, basketball court, and soccer fields, plus a library whose web site tells us (and the old, tiny library was our go-to place when my kids were growi...
Comments 5