University of Delaware Library

Special Collections Department

Town Council Minutes
Newark, Delaware

1866 - 1900

(bulk dates 1888 - 1900)

Manuscript Collection Number: 464
Accessioned: Compiled by William Ditto Lewis, 1958-1960
Extent: 1 volume
Content: Digest of minutes of town council meetings
Access: The collection is open for research.
Processed: May 2003 by Carrie L. Foley

for reference assistance email Special Collections
or contact:

Special Collections, University of Delaware Library
Newark, Delaware 19717-5267
(302) 831-2229

Table of Contents

Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of one volume containing abstracts of minutes of town council meetings held in Newark, Delaware, between 1866 and 1900 (bulk dates 1888- 1900). This digest was prepared in 1959-1960 by William Ditto Lewis, who served as University Librarian at Delaware from 1930-1958. Lewis created his abstracts from three manuscript volumes, which are now located in the Newark City Secretary’s Office. There is an index to the digest, found on pages 91-101, which provides a useful overview of the collection. At the front of the volume, there is also a list of Newark Town Commissioners for the years 1866-1892.

The digest contains concise notes summarizing the council meetings, essentially condensing the contents of each page of the three original volumes into a few lines. Though Lewis’ notes are brief, they offer a thorough picture of the issues facing the local government in Newark in the late nineteenth century. Common subjects include elections, taxes, and town services such as the police and fire departments. There are references to town ordinances on noise, snow removal, firearms, animal control, traffic, and many other matters. The minutes also reveal a great deal about how the town of Newark contended with modernization efforts and infrastructure development. There are numerous notes on light and power; telephone and telegraph services; water works; railroads; street lighting; and improvements to the town’s roads and sidewalks.


City Secretary’s Office, 220 Elkton Road, Newark, Delaware; (302) 366-7070

Related sources:

Newark, Delaware: Selected Primary Sources

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