Hagley Museum and Library
200 Hagley Creek Road
Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware, 19807
Photo: License: Public Domain
The Hagley Museum and Library is a nonprofit educational institution in Wilmington, Delaware. Covering more than 235 acres along the banks of the Brandywine Creek, the museum and grounds include the first du Pont family home and garden.
The grounds also contain the powder yards, and a 19th-century machine shop. On the hillside below the mansion lies a Renaissance-revival garden, with terraces and statuary, created in the 1920s by Louise Evalina du Pont Crowninshield (1877–1958).
The facility sits at the midpoint of the DuPont Historic Corridor.
Opened in 1957, the Hagley Museum features exhibits and demonstrations that show the connections between early industrial technology and early American history, focusing on the histories of the du Pont family, DuPont company, explosives and gunpowder, and innovation (through a large collection of American Patent models). The Museum also explores personal stories of the 19th-century DuPont Company employees, how they lived, and how their lifestyles changed along with new machinery and new production methods.
Hagley historians only know that the name was already in use well before E.I. du Pont expanded downstream from Eleutherian Mills in 1813 by purchasing the land that became the Hagley Yards. An 1813 document refers to the land as Hagley and it had been called Hagley as early as 1797, when its owner, Philadelphia Quaker merchant Rumford Dawes, applied for insurance on buildings that were said to be located in a place called Hagley on the Brandywine. Dawes had acquired the property in 1783. Since the name Hagley did not appear on the documents transferring ownership at that time, it seems likely that Dawes gave this name to the Brandywine location.
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