Milton in Sussex County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Shipbuilding on the Broadkill
Like the Native Americans before them, the European settlers of the 17th and 18th centuries utilized the Broadkill River as a means of transportation. Clearing of lands resulted in an abundance of grain and wood products. To transport these products to market, local craftsmen fashioned small vessels from the timbers of the prime hardwood forest that covered the land. Expanding settlement and the resulting increase of exports led to the construction of larger vessels capable of sailing to more-distant ports. As the number and size of these vessels increased, the reputation of local builders began to grow as well.
Located at the highest point of navigation, the tiny village of Milton offered the advantage of proximity to the inland forests, and by the early 1800s a majority of the shipyards were located here. While earlier vessels had been built for local commerce, the Broadkill industry’s reputation for quality fueled a demand for ships by outside interests. The size of vessels grew steadily, and local shipwrights were routinely producing ships for the coastal and Trans-Atlantic trade by the mid-19th century. Increasing preference
Erected 2001 by The Delaware Public Archives. (Marker Number SC-143.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Waterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Delaware Public Archives series list.
Location. 38° 46.725′ N, 75° 18.615′ W. Marker is in Milton, Delaware, in Sussex County. Marker is on Chandler Street, on the right when traveling east. Located in Milton Memorial Park at the Broadkill River foot bridge and landing, behind the library. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Milton DE 19968, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Ships and Men (a few steps from this marker); The Holly Industry (within shouting distance of this marker); Milton Public Library (within shouting distance of this marker); Governor David Hazzard (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Milton Museum (about 400 feet away); Governor Samuel PaynterMilton Fire Department, Inc. (about 600 feet away); Carey Storehouse (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Milton.
Regarding Shipbuilding on the Broadkill. Originally settled in 1672, it was once known as "Head of the Broadkill" for its geographic location at the head of the Broadkill River. This location, just a few miles from Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean, was ideal for shipbuilding in days of old. Many shipbuilders and sea captains lived and worked in Milton
Credits. This page was last revised on August 19, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 31, 2010, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 653 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on November 3, 2010, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.