The mission of Delaware County Historical Society (DCHS) is to collect, protect and preserve the history and culture of Delaware County, PA making it accessible to all by providing strong educational outreach.
Since 1895, DCHS has been gathering and sharing the stories of the county and its people.
Where history comes to life.
4,500+ books on local genealogy & county history
200 original and/or copies of handwritten documents from colonial period
William Penn original documents, land grants & wills
Family Bible Collection
350,000 historic documents
Yearbooks dating back to 1880
Newspaper & Census Collection
Maps & Atlases
Planning for the Future
It's been a busy winter at Delaware County Historical Society (DCHS)! Our staff continues to undergo an inventory and vetting of its entire collection, which dates back to the organization's founding in 1895. This standard practice ensures that all items are accounted for, in a stable preservation state, and accurately reflect Delaware County history.
As many of you are aware, in August last year, the DCHS board voted unanimously to sell the current building that the organization occupies in Chester, due to insurmountable costs of maintaining the building and unsafe conditions. DCHS is actively in the process of seeking a new location, with support from the County, that is better suited and more centrally located to provide improved access to the collection.
DCHS is nearly 75% of the way through the collection and is preparing items for the eventual move. Experts in library and archival sciences have been consulted through the process to ensure that everything is done by the highest of standards. The goal is to protect these rare items and make them more easily accessible to the public.
Incredible historical finds have come to light in the process of conducting the inventory. For example, rediscovered within our collection includes an issue of the Pennsylvania Gazette published in December 1763 by Benjamin Franklin, and John Broomall’s book of Latin Syntax, published in 1819.
This year will be a significant period of change for DCHS, as we move to a new location and focus on the organization's future as a hub for local historical preservation, research and education. A primary goal in the future is to improve accessibility through digitization of our collection. DCHS plans to maintain rotating artifact displays and develop programming and events in the near future.
Thank you to all of our supporters who are bringing DCHS into a new era and protecting our legacy. Together, we are looking forward to a bright future for Delco history.
Please consider making a donation towards our work! Visit padelcohistory.org for more information or click the link below.
- Paul Hewes, Interim Director -
VIRTUAL MUSEUM GALLERY
Black History Month
Sun Shipbuilding & Drydock Company's
Yard No. 4
Learn about the history of Sun Ship's segregated shipyard and Black shipbuilders during and after WWII.
Live Virtual Program was
held on Feb 23, 2022
408 Avenue of the States
Chester, PA 19013
(across from City Hall)
Free parking lot located on
W. 4th St. & City Hall Pl.