State Bird: Blue Hen Chicken State Flower: Peach Blossom
Dover, Delaware was the second capital of the day, so we again, reached it after they had closed. Bummer. A few fun facts that we learned about it regardless:
Delaware was the very first state to become officially a part of the vision of our new nation, in 1787. William Penn, whom everyone knows founded Philadelphia, actually named the city of Dover, too. He was a busy man. Also, this state has the lowest mean of altitude of any state, and because of this low-lying, rich, fertile land, agriculture remains one of the leading industries of the state. Not what I expected at all!
We started our Dover adventure at the Old State House, which was used as the seat of government until 1933. Such a cute building, that they apparently “modernized” and then renovated it back to what we see today, which its original state.
Surrounding the Old State House is the cute little area of the Dover Green Historic District, which is like a little community of houses, taverns and government buildings that encompassed most of the inhabited area of Dover in the 18th century.
The John Bell house would have been so very interesting to visit the interior of, just for the sheer size of it! Its entire footprint is only 16 x 25 feet. It has been lovingly restored to its former glory, as it had been empty for quite a while before the state purchased it. No one is sure when it was built originally, but they do know it was standing when the Constitution was ratified by the state in 1787. There is a window within the house that has a clear view of the tavern where that historical event took place.
We then walked across the street to check out The Legislative Hall. If we were in Memphis, we’d have just called the building “The New State House”, am I right, y’all? I’m referring, of course, to the “Hernando De Soto Bridge”. It was opened to the driving public in 1973, yet most of us just refer to it as “The New Bridge”. I honestly had to do a quick google search to find out the actual name of “The Old Bridge”. It’s called the Memphis-Arkansas Bridge, seems easy enough to remember, I guess.
When Harper and I first came up on this bell, we noticed that it wasn’t stationary. My first inclination, of course, was to try and ring it. Wouldn’t you? It was SOOO loud that Harper screamed and just ran away. Not because it scared her, but being the rule follower she is, I think she may have thought we would be arrested. It was THAT startling. In my defense, Dover, there are exactly zero signs that say “DO NOT RING BELL”. I always take that to be an invitation to ring said bell. Memories, you guys. Memories. The bell is a 1950 replica of the Liberty Bell. It’s number 5 of 55 life sized replicas made. And I rang it.
On the way out, we needed some COFFEE. Turns out, there was a cute little coffee place near the capitol buildings, built in 1857, and they had some delicious coffee for us. We unfortunately had to get our coffee to go, but such a cute little stop! Check out The Governor’s Cafe , if you’re ever in Dover.
Next stop, Annapolis, MD! We get to meet up with Memphis friends there, yippee!