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October 17, 2007
From journal Columbus Day in Chateau Valley
October 11, 2002
The site also includes the DuPont powder mill - not the original, which, despite DuPont's strict safety regulations, blew up a number of times - but a slightly more recent incarnation.
The mill is set on the banks of the Brandywine River, which provided the power needed for the giant grinding stones that milled the gunpowder into uniform grains. You can watch "powder" being milled and look at the steam engine and other exhibits in the machine shop.
Set into a hill above the grinding mills are the homes of the mill workers. Setting houses into the hillside not only kept the inhabitants cool in the sticky heat of a Delaware summer, it protected them from the inevitable explosions that accompanied living next to a powder mill.
Visitors can tour the Gibbons House, furnished as if it were the home of a late-19th century powder-yard foreman, see the schoolhouse where the mill workers' children were taught, and have a plesant lunch at the Berlin House restaurant, once the office of the company's bookkeepers.
Further downstream, perched on a hill above the ruins of the original powder yard, stands Eleutherian Mills, the original DuPont family home.
Built in 1802, the handsome stone house was renovated in the Colonial Revival style in the 1920's by Louise DuPont Crowninshield, a great granddaughter of E.I. DuPont, and related by marriage to the Crowninshields who lived in the Crowninshield-Bentley House (now part of the Peabody Essex Museum) in Salem, MA.
Elutherian Mills is furnished with Mrs. Crowninshield's collection of antiques, along with several generations' worth of DuPont family artifacts.
Even if you're not into antiques and DuPont family heirlooms, the house is worth a visit to see the "modern" kitchen - the last word in culinary technology, circa 1923. The kitchen and other service areas of the house provide a glimpse into the workdays of the servants who helped the Crowninshield's build a reputation for gracious hospitality.
Admission is $11.00 for adults, $9.00 for students and seniors, $4.00 for children from 6 - 14, and free for kids under six.
From journal Wilmington, Land of DuPonts
September 28, 2002
The gunpowder yards and machine shop were not as interesting to me, but the men in the tour groups seemed quite fascinated by this part. There is still an operating waterwheel that operates the machinery of the exhibits and working models of a water turbine,steam engine and powder tester. It takes several hours to see and experience everything that the Hagley has to offer.
From journal The Brandywine Valley,Delaware
December 17, 2000
Many of the original buildings remain in this site along the Brandywine, including the original residence of the duPonts in America - Eleutherian Mills.
Should you be in town during June - try to check out the fabulous fireworks displays given off in early June. The fireworks are only open to museum members and are not cheap, but it is worth it once you get a glimpse of the fireworks and appreciate the musical accompanyment from the live orchestra.
From journal Brandywine Valley Arts
by RV Momma
October 29, 2000
The Hagley site is quite large, stretching out along the banks of the Brandywine, so allow plenty of time to explore. A park bus leaves from the Henry Clay Mill, now a visitor orientation center, and takes you to all the sites. It will also take you up Blacksmith Hill to the Belin House, a seasonal restaurant. There are also picnic areas along the river, if you prefer to bring a lunch.
From journal Dazzling Treasures in Delaware