Hyundai Delaware, DE. Information Page
Delaware is one of the 50 states of the United States of America. It was one of the original 13 states and is known as the "First State" as it was the first of them to ratify the United States Constitution, which it did on December 7, 1787. It is a Mid-Atlantic state located on the western shore of the Delaware River and Delaware Bay and geographically is the second smallest state in the United States. The state capital is at Dover and its major city is Wilmington.
Before Delaware was settled by Europeans, the area was home to the Delaware (also known as Lenni Lenape), Susquehanna, and other Native American tribes.
The Dutch were the first Europeans to settle in present day Delaware by establishing a trading post at Swanendael, now Lewes, Delaware in 1631, although it was soon destroyed in a war with native Americans. In 1638 a Dutchman named Peter Minuit at the head of a group of Swedes, Finns and Dutch established a Swedish trading post and colony at Fort Christina, now in Wilmington, Delaware. Meanwhile the Dutch, reinvigorated by the leadership of Peter Stuyvesant, established a new fort in 1651 at present day New Castle, Delaware and in 1655 took over the entire Swedish colony and incorporated it into Dutch New Netherlands.
Only nine years later, in 1664, the Dutch were themselves forcibly removed by a British expedition under the direction of James, the Duke of York. Fighting off a prior claim by Cęcilius Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore, Proprietor of Maryland, the Duke passed his somewhat dubious title on to William Penn in 1682. Penn badly wanted an outlet to the sea for his Pennsylvania province and leased what were now known as the "Lower Counties on the Delaware" from the Duke.
Penn established representative government and briefly combined his two possessions under one General Assembly, but in 1704, the representatives of the Lower Counties began meeting on their own at New Castle. Penn and his heirs remained the Proprietors and always appointed the same person Deputy Governor for the Province of Pennsylvania and the Lower Counties.
Delaware was one of the thirteen colonies which revolted against British rule in the American Revolution. The colonial General Assembly declared itself separated from British rule on June 15, 1776, and because of the midnight ride of Caesar Rodney, its delegates voted for American independence in July 1776. In September 1776, Delaware adopted the first state constitution and its first leader went by the title of "President." Contributing leaders such as Thomas McKean, George Read, John Dickinson and John Haslet to the cause, Delaware provided one of the premier regiments in the Continental Army, known as the "Blue Hens." The state was invaded and partially occupied by the British from September 1777 until June 1778 and the important Battle of Brandywine was fought just over the border in Pennsylvania.
Following the American Revolution, statesmen from Delaware were among the leading proponents of a strong central United States government with equal representation for each state. Once the Connecticut Compromise was reached creating a U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, the leaders in Delaware were able to easily secure ratification of the U.S. Constitution on December 7, 1787, making Delaware the first state to do so.