Delaware
 
 
 
 
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Learn before you travel. This section of Fun Easy English focuses on facts and other cool stuff about your favorite U.S. state. This is great English reading practice. This page focuses on the state of Delaware.
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Delaware

With the state motto of "Liberty and Independence," it's no surprise that Delaware was the first of the original 13 states of the Union; it's often called the "First" or "Diamond State." The state's name comes from the original governor of Virginia, Thomas West, Lord De La Warr. William Penn acquired the land that makes up Delaware to keep his Pennsylvania colony from being landlocked. Today, Delaware is one of the most industrialized states, known for its chemical research. Dover is the capital; the state flower is the peach blossom.
Flag of DelawareDelaware State Flag


The state flag of Delaware was adopted in 1913.

The colonial blue and buff represent the colors of General George Washington's uniform. "December 7, 1787" is the day Delaware ratified the federal Constitution - becoming the first state of the union.

Inside the buff diamond is the state coat of arms (first adopted in 1777 and also featured on the state seal), which contains many symbols of Delaware:

Ship: a symbol of Delaware's ship building industry and extensive coastal commerce.
Farmer: represents the central role of farming to the state of Delaware.
Militiaman: recognizes the crucial role of the citizen-soldier to the maintenance of American liberties.
Wheat Sheaf; a symbol of the agricultural vitality of Delaware.
Maize (Indian Corn): symbolizes the agricultural basis of Delaware's economy.
Water: represents the Delaware River, the state's main artery of commerce and transportation.
Ox; signifies the importance of animal husbandry to Delaware's state economy.
Motto: "Liberty and Independence" was approved in 1847.
Source: State Symbols USA
 
The great seal of the state of DelawareDelaware State Facts

Picture: state seal of Delaware
State Capital Dover
Nickname First State / Diamond State
Motto Liberty and Independence
Statehood Dec. 7, 1787 (1st)
Origin of Name Named after Lord De La Warr, an early Virginia governor.
Largest Cities Wilmington, Dover, Newark, Bethany, Milton
Border States Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania
Area 1,955 sq. mi.; 49th largest
State Bird Blue Hen Chicken
State Flower Peach Blossom
State Tree American Holly (ilex opaca)
State Song Our Delaware
Map showing the location of DelawareTravel and tourism site for Delaware - This state travel and territorial tourism site provides ideas for your vacations, meetings, and more.
Delaware Stories
 
Return Day

Do you know what "to bury the hatchet" means? Did you know this phrase came from politics?

In 1791, an unusual Sussex County, Delaware, tradition started. Back then the law required that all votes had to be cast in Georgetown, the county seat. Voters would arrive from all over the county, cast their ballots, then go home while the votes were counted. Two days later, the voters and politicians would return to Georgetown to find out the election results. The day the results were in and all the people returned was called "Return Day."

Of course the winners had reason to celebrate, but over the years Return Day became both a time to celebrate and a time to heal political differences. Today, votes in an election are usually known soon after the polls close, but this tradition continues. Part of the ceremony includes a symbolic "burying of the hatchet," following an old Native American tradition. Rival politicians together bury a ceremonial hatchet in the sand to show that it is the end of the political race and the end of any hard feelings the candidates may have had about each other during the campaign.

The next time you are angry with someone, why not just bury the hatchet?
 
St. Anthony of Padua Feast Day Procession

Have you ever lost something and really wanted to find it? Next time that happens, you might try asking St. Anthony for help. For Italian Catholics, St. Anthony of Padua is the patron saint of lost things. The faithful pray to him and hope that whatever they have lost will be found.

The Italian American people of Wilmington, Delaware, celebrate St. Anthony and 11 other saints with the St. Anthony of Padua Feast Day Procession. This annual religious procession, which celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2000, is a reminder of their Italian heritage and faith. Traditionally, such festivals were held in Italian towns celebrating the local patron saint. In 1925, a church in Wilmington held a procession to honor St. Anthony. Over the years, the festival expanded to include 11 other saints and has become an eight- day celebration.

In the procession, statues of all 12 saints are paraded through the streets, joined by religious leaders, government officials, people dressed in Italian folk costumes, bands, and others.
 
Delaware Saengerbund Oktoberfest

What do you think the children in the photo are doing? They are doing a German-style dance in traditional costumes.

Every year, Oktoberfest is celebrated in Delaware by the Delaware Saengerbund. The original Oktoberfest celebration began in a part of Germany called Bavaria in 1810. In October of that year the crown prince Ludwig married Princess Theresia, and the public was invited to the wedding celebration. It became an annual event, and today Oktoberfests are held all over the world.

The Delaware Saengerbund is a German-American singing and social club that was started in the mid-1800s for German immigrants who had come to America. It was a way for people to share their culture in their newly adopted country. The Delaware celebration of Oktoberfest is three days of German singing, dancing, music and, of course, eating.

Unlike most Oktoberfests, which are held in October, the one in Delaware is held in September. Can you guess why? Because the weather is warmer then!
 
Holy Trinity Greek Festival

Do you like to try food from other cultures?

A great place to try new foods is at fairs or festivals. The Holy Trinity Greek Festival in Wilmington, Delaware, is held over four days each June. The festival began as a Christmas bazaar by the Piloptochos Society, a Greek women's organization, to sell crafts and gifts. In this way it was similar to many other events, but the one big surprise was that the Greek pastries were the most popular attraction. So, the next year they added more Greek food to the bazaar. Soon the food was the main attraction!

The organizers decided to move the event to the springtime and turned it into a festival with the focus on Greek food, dancing, and culture. The event has the feel of an authentic Greek village festival with performances by local dancers dressed up in Greek regional costumes. Maybe you can go to a Greek festival someday and you will be able to say, "Diaskeda'same Poli'!" (We had a lot of fun).
 
American Art in Delaware

You have probably heard of the DuPont Company, which was founded by a family of the same name. But do you know about the museum that one of the family members began?

Henry Francis du Pont (1880-1969) was an heir to Delaware's DuPont Company fortune. He was one of the first serious collectors of American decorative art objects --furniture, textiles, paintings, and other objects made in the United States between 1640 and 1840. American furniture and household objects had been considered inferior to those from Europe. But du Pont helped develop a new appreciation for American decorative arts. He created a legendary showplace for these objects on his family's estate just outside of Wilmington, Delaware. In 1951 it was opened to the public as the Henry Francis du Pont Winterthur (pronounced winter-tour) Museum.

Du Pont assembled objects from his collection into 175 "period rooms," each with examples of American antiques and decorative arts that followed a certain theme or period in early American history. For example, the du Pont Dining Room has furniture dating from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. And, because this was the time when the United States became a new nation, there is a patriotic theme in the room. Another example is the Chinese Parlor, which has furnishings that reflect Americans' fascination with Asian culture during the 18th century. In these period rooms du Pont believed he could tell the story of the early United States through furniture and other decorative arts.
Source: Library of Congress
Delaware

There are no national forests, parks, or monuments in this state.
 
Travel America
Cool America
Route 66 - Famous American Road

U.S. Route 66 (US 66 or Route 66), also known as the Will Rogers Highway, the Main Street of America or the Mother Road, was one of the original highways in the U.S. Highway System. The highway, which became one of the most famous roads in the United States, originally ran from Chicago, Illinois, through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona before ending in Santa Monica, California, near Los Angeles, covering a total of 2,448 miles (3,940 km). It was recognized in popular culture by both the hit song "(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66" and the Route 66 television show in the 1960s.
Route 66: The Highway That's the Best
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
Chicago: The Start of Route 66
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
Going West for Decades on Route 66
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
Arizona: The Spirit of Route 66
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
Route 66 California: The End of the Trail
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
Ten Must-See Route 66 Attractions
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
Four Famous Foods On Route 66
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
International Tourists Drawn to Route 66
(Beginner - Listening)

A video lesson which shows you an interesting place in America.
The English is spoken at 75% of normal speed.
Great English listening practice.
This video shows travel along Route 66, the most famous road in America.
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