Side Trips from Philadelphia: Places to Explore


Wilmington, Delaware

Delaware's commercial hub and largest city has handsome architecture—with good examples of styles such as Federal, Greek Revival, Queen Anne, and Art Deco—and abundant cultural attractions. Wilmington began in 1638 as a Swedish settlement and later was populated by employees of various du Pont family businesses and nearby poultry ranches. The four-block Market Street Mall marks the city center and is distinguished by the Grand Opera House. The four-story theater, built by the Masonic Order in 1871, has a white cast-iron facade in French Second Empire style to mimic the old Paris Opera. The adjoining Giacco Building houses a smaller theater and art galleries. Outside Wilmington's compact city center are several outstanding museums, including some that are legacies of the du Ponts.

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