University of Delaware Library
Bookmark and Share


The University of Delaware Library's Delaware Collection documents all aspects of history and life in Delaware from the prehistoric period and the earliest plans for settlement by the Swedes in 1624 to contemporary life. The collection encompasses the history, culture, domestic, business, and social aspects of Delaware as documented in correspondence, manuscripts, legal documents, diaries, journals, account books and ledgers, maps, printed ephemera, family papers, business records, archival material, photographs and graphic materials, and miscellaneous items. The Delaware Collection is heavily used by University of Delaware faculty and students for research and teaching. The selections included in this exhibition all document various aspects of land use, property, law, and commerce which are among the most heavily-researched topics in this collection. Included are documents pertaining to the early Swedish settlement, the first collection of the Laws of the three lower counties, the Breviate which details the history of the longstanding boundary dispute between Lord Baltimore and his heirs and the Penn Family, on through more contemporary materials, such as almanacs, directories, and trade catalogs.

Delaware Swedes
Sweriges Rijkes General
Handels Compagnies
, 1625.
Delaware Almanac
The Wilmington
, 1765.
Wilmington Directory, 1814
A Directory and register
for the year 1814 of the
borough of Wilmington
and Brandywine
, 1814.
  • Eric Biörck, 1668-1740.
    Autograph letter to Carl Widstrom, 3 & 4 May 1711, 6 pp.
  • Willem Usselincx, 1567-ca. 1647.
    Sweriges Rijkes General Handels Compagnies Contract ... Stockholm: [s.n.] 1625.
  • The honest man's interest as he claims any lands in the counties of New-Castle, Kent, or Sussex, on Delaware. [Philadelphia: Andrew Bradford, 1726].
  • John Penn (1700-1746) plaintiff.
    Breviate. John Penn, Thomas Penn, and Richard Penn, esqrs; plaintiffs. Charles Calvert esq; Lord Baltimore in the kingdom of Ireland, defendant. For the plaintiffs. Upon a bill to compell a specifick execution of articles of agreement entered into between the partys for setling the boundarys of the province of Pensilvania, the three lower countys, and the province of Maryland, and for perpetuating testimony, &c. Mr. Attorney General Sir Dudley Ryder. Mr. Solicitor General Murray. Mr. King's Council Noel. Paris and Weston sollicitors. [London: s.n., 1742].
  • Counties of New-Castle, Kent, and Sussex upon Delaware.
    Laws of the government of New-Castle, Kent and Sussex, upon Delaware, Published by order of the Assembly. Philadelphia: Printed and sold by B. Franklin and D. Hall, 1752.
  • Charles Thomson, 1729-1824.
    An enquiry into the causes of the alienation of the Delaware and Shawanese Indians from the British interest: and into the measures taken for recovering their friendship; extracted from the public treaties, and other authentic papers relating to the transactions of the government of Pensilvania and the said Indians, for near forty years ; and explained by a map of the country; together with the remarkable journal of Christian Frederic Post, by whose negotiations, among the Indians on the Ohio, they were withdrawn from the interest of the French, who thereupon abandoned the fort and country; with notes by the editor explaining sundry Indian customs, &c / written in Pennsylvania. London : Printed for J. Wilkie, 1759.
  • The Wilmington almanack, or Ephemeries for the year of Our Lord 1765 ... Wilmington: Printed and sold by James Adams, 1765.
  • A Directory and register for the year 1814 of the borough of Wilmington and Brandywine. [Wilmington, Del.]: Printed by R. Porter, [1813]

This page is maintained by Special Collections.

  • UD Library Special Collections  •   181 South College Avenue  •   Newark, DE 19717-5267  •   USA
    Phone: USA +1 302-831-2229  •   ©2014