Delaware Facts
Delaware Facts

21 Interesting Delaware Facts

Karin Lehnardt
By Karin Lehnardt, Senior Writer
Published November 8, 2021
  • Delaware was the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution, hence its nickname, "The First State."[3]
  • Delaware is the second smallest state in the United States.[1]
  • Before Europeans arrived in Delaware in the 16th century, Native American groups such as the Lenape and Nanticoke inhabited the region.[3]
  • Delaware is a de facto onshore corporate haven. It has over 50% of all NYSE-listed businesses and 60% of the Fortune 500.[1]
  • Delaware Meaning
    Delaware is named after Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr, an English nobleman
  • Delaware is named after Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr, Virginia's first colonial governor and English nobleman.[1]
  • Bicycling is the state sport of Delaware.[1]
  • Because Thomas Jefferson once commented that Delaware was a jewel among states, one of Delaware's nicknames is "The Diamond State."[1]
  • Because soldiers staged fights between chickens during the Revolutionary War, Delaware became known as the Blue Hen State.[3]
  • Due to its marshes, bays, and streams, Delaware has more shoreline than the U.S. Virgin Islands and Guam combined.[1]
  • Delaware has only one official cave.[1]
  • Delaware has the fewest counties of any state in the United States.[3]
  • Delaware is home to famous Delaware Bay oysters, which are considered to be the best in the world.[1]
  • The DuPont family played a significant role in Delaware's history, culture, and business.[1]
  • The person on the back of the 1999 Delaware state quarter is Brigadier General Caesar Rodney of Dover. He rode 80 miles on horseback overnight to Philadelphia on July 1, 1776 to vote for the independence of the United States. He also had skin cancer and asthma at the time.[1]
  • Delaware has more chickens than people.[2]
  • Delaware Chicken Facts
    There are 200 times more chickens in Delaware than people

  • Delaware's average altitude is about 60 feet above sea level, which is the lowest average of any state.[3]
  • In 1923, the University of Delaware launched the first study abroad program in the United States, when Professor Raymond W. Kirkbride took eight juniors to France.[4]
  • Delaware hosts the Punkin Chunkin Association's annual world championship competition. An estimated 50,000 spectators watch teams launch pumpkins.[1]
  • Delaware is home to the largest population of horseshoe crabs in the world.[3]
  • Delaware horseshoe crab
    Horseshoe crabs are ancient mariners to Delaware

  • There is no sales tax in Delaware, making it a major attraction for tourists who are looking to save money.[1]
  • Opened in 1951, Delaware Memorial Bridge is the longest twin-span suspension bridge in the world. The bridge connects Delaware and New Jersey.[3]
  • Dazzling Delaware Facts INFOGRAPHIC
    Fun Delaware Infographic Facts

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