Dover, Delaware History - City Information
When entering the delightful city of Dover Delaware, one feels as if they are viewing a marriage of the old, historic past and the new, contemporary present ! Though not quite as cultured as the city of Wilmington and it's Port, Dover has much more of a metropolitan ambiance to offer than the resort beach cities of Delaware, yet the city still carries all the benefits of stepping back in time with it's much preserved history. This city holds something very special in the fact that it is the capitol of the first state of America, Delaware. Dover, the second largest city in Delaware, located in Kent county, was founded in 1683 by William Penn. He actually named this city after England's beautiful city of Dover. The Green, Dover's first established down town area was created in1722. At this time, the cities livelihood came from the markets, with such trades as craftsmen, artisans, cabinet makers, shoemakers, carpenters, tailors, hatters as well as many cozy Inns and Taverns. It was in fact, that the Golden Fleece Tavern was the place that the United States Constitution was ratified on December 7, 1787. Dover served as the marketing center for the surrounding farming regions in which an abundance of fruits and vegetables were produced. It is the home to the famous Caesar Rodney who was an officer of the Delaware Militia during the French and Indian war as well as the American Revolution. Caesar was also one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence and a continental congressmen from Delaware. Dover's largest growth came about in the years following World War 1. It is home to the Dover Air Force Base, being one of the largest military freight terminals in the world. This base holds the only military mortuary in the United Sates.
Traveling through this charming capital city, the surroundings appear to be contemporary with it's chain of popular restaurants, shopping malls and various boutiques that reflect the 20th century. One only needs to take a detour and travel the back roads to see that the entrancing, historic Dover, still exists and is as alluring as ever, beckoning one to go back in time to relive it's colonial and Victorian
past. For the history lover in all of us, there are many places to visit while in the city. Some of the most popular are the Golden Fleece Tavern site, Kent County Courthouse, the Legislative Hall, Mifflin House, and the Old State House. There are quaint shops and pleasant walkways in the Historical central square know as the Green where rallies and other various patriotic events are are still held to this day.
One of the major attractions of this city that draws tourists from all over the country is the infamous Dover Downs. This casino offers gambling where one can play the slots for as little as a penny, yet for the more seasoned gamblers, there is Video Blackjack, Three Card Poker, Let it Ride and Texas Hold'em. This casino offers over 2,700 slot machines as well as world class entertainment. Whether attending the thrilling horse races, Nascar races or dining at the spectacular Michelle's restaurant at Dover Downs, there is something to offer that will please all of ones senses. For relaxation and pampering , there is a wonderful spa and salon, where one can indulge in a manicure, facial or full body massage to bring some rejuvenation and pampering to the body and soul. The hotel offers rooms with cable television, Internet access and pillow top mattresses for a restful nights sleep.
For those who love the arts and cuisine that tempts both the simple and sophisticated palate, Dover Delaware has an array of fine restaurants, museums and soul warming musical events. The Dover Opera House, known as The Schwartz Center, has a wonderful symphony orchestra along with ballet performances, classic films and comedy shows. Bigg's Museum of America displays art, antique furniture, silver tea services, local painters as well as eye catching sculptures. Being that in Tuscany, food is at the center of every celebration,when the Italian's run out of holidays to celebrate, they celebrate the food itself. For that very reason, Italian restaurants have such an alluring attraction about them. Dover has plenty of delightful Italian eateries, including the infamous Olive Garden with it's popular homemade soups, bread sticks and never ending bowl of salad, accompanying gourmet pasta dishes and tantalizing appetizers. Other fine dining Italian eateries are the Paradiso Restaurant, well known for it's lobster dishes and Roma Italian, where it's cozy ambiance is enhanced by its veal, seafood and steak entrees. For coffee lovers, there is both The Coffee Beanery and Starbuck's, where one can just enter it's doors and smell the delightful aroma of fresh roasted coffee beans, and splurge with a hot baked cookie or a chocolate biscotti. Seafood lovers can enjoy crab stuffed mushrooms at the lovely Atwood's or a bountiful shrimp fest at Red Lobster. Lastly, for those with a sweet tooth, Cold Stone Creamery offers delicious, freshly churned ice cream, with an abundance of tempting ingredients that turn a sundae into a gourmet meal within itself.
Residents of Dover Delaware agree that the city is located in the perfect spot! Not only is the city close to Wilmington, Philadelphia and the resort beach cities of Lewes, Rehoboth, Bethany Beach and Ocean City, but it is also nearby to historic Washington DC, Annapolis and Baltimore. The Dover mall is a great place to browse, as it is filled with popular shops such as Macy's, Boscov's, Sears, Old Navy, Pier 1, Bath and Body works, Victoria's Secret and and a wonderful coffee pub to drop in to when one needs a little pick-me-up after hours of shopping. If it's more detailed shopping one desires, Dover is only 45 miles from Christiana Mall in Wilmington, which has an even larger range of specialty shops as well as terrific eateries. Also near by is the famous Brandy Wine area. Another town where one feels they have stepped back in time with it's grandeur, opulent estates, gorgeous countryside and enduring history. You can't drive through the area without stopping in and visiting the famous Winterthur De Museum, filled with Henry Francis du Ponts extraordinary collection of American furnishings and decorative arts. Another fascinating place to see is the Bombay Hook Wildlife Refuge. It is a spectacular refuge and breeding ground for migrating birds and other wildlife. With its 15, 978 acres, (4/5's of it being tidal salt marsh), it brings in over 170,000 visitors each year.
A local and seasonal extravaganza to inspire the soul and spirit is The Historic Homes of Odessa. During the holiday season, there are 30 historic homes, spanning three centuries, that are open for the public to tour! In this special fete, there are candlelit tours, music, carriage rides as well as delightful cuisine and crafts for every age. A visit to Dover would not be complete without stopping in to Spence's Market and Bazaar, where truly the home coked food is a feast for both the soul and palate. Vendor's come from all over Dover, Maryland and Pennsylvania to sell their goods. The Amish market and bakery is worth the drive within itself with fresh pies, rotisserie chicken with fresh carrots and potatoes and cinnamon rolls that make your mouth water. This market is located on Governors avenue and is open on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
Whether one is visiting, relocating or just passing through, the city of Dover has much to offer everyone. The location is central to the beaches, historic cities, Tanger Outlets, great restaurants, museums, fantastic shopping, the arts and very friendly, loving people. Dover is a city that gives one the sense of peace and plenty.