Swedish History at the New Sweden Centre | Kalmar Nyckel Shipyard | Wilmington, Delaware



Celebrating Colonists Day 2014 are, from left, Mark Hogate, Donn Draper, Aleasa Hogate, descendant of Anders Larsson Dalbo 1640, Donna Draper's granddaughter, Bill Hutchinson, portraying Peter Minuit, and Chief Dennis Coker of the Lenape Tribe. Check out the video of Colonists Day 2012 on this page, below left.

Coming events


"The Landing of the Swedes" by Stanley M. Arthurs depicts the first contact in 1638 between the Swedish settlers and Native Americans. The meeting took place along the Christina River in present-day Wilmington.

The image is made possible through the generosity of the Permanent Collection of the University of Delaware

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New Sweden Centre

TEL 302-429-0464
FAX 302-746-6755

Email: info@colonialnewsweden.org

Mail-Business Address:
New Sweden Centre
PO Box 12001
Wilmington, DE 19850

Tours/visits by appointment:
Please call 302-429-0464
to schedule a visit


Click on the logo to go to the website of our partner, The New Sweden Alliance.

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The New Sweden Centre, headquartered in Wilmington, De., offers educational outreach programs and historic reenactors.

Who are we?

Volunteers, educators, history buffs

What do we do?

Promote Delaware Valley's history 1638-1776 with focus on Swedish, Finnish and Lenape culture

Where are we?

In exhibits throughout the Delaware Valley. Our main exhibit is in JA Finance Park, reaching 10,000 students yearly at Junior Acheivement of Delaware, 522 Walnut St., Willmington, DE 19801

When can I visit?

Make a reservation: call 302-429-0464 or send us an email

How can I help?

Join or donate. We always welcome new members interested in being museum hosts, reenactors, speakers or liaisons.

Click here to go to the membership page.

Click here to call up the volunteer form.


New plaques dedicated
at Salem County Courthouse

Dignitaries applaud the unveiling of one of two new plaques at the Salem County Historical Courthouse. The plaques, created by Aleasa Hogate (in traditional dress) commemorate the role the first settlers played in the Delaware Valley. The ceremony in Salem, N.J., Oct. 18 kicked off activities that later included a reception and program at the Junior Achievement Campus in Wilmington, the highlight of which was the ribbon cutting for the new display, "A Walk Through Swedish American Globalization." The display will be seen by thousands of students at the JA Center. Photo courtesy of BJ Ayars

Junior Acheivement Exhibit opens

History timeline aimed at students

Paintings of significant figures in Swedish-American history by Ros Stallcup are part of the display now open at the Junior Acheivement of Delaware headquarters at 522 South Walnut St., Wilmington. Click here for more photos and the full story on the display and its opening. The display was made possible in part by a grant from the Swedish Council of America.

Centre in transition

Museum without walls

Dear Friends,

  2013 was a year of transition for the New Sweden Centre. While we may no longer enjoy the use of our own space at the Kalmar Nyckel Shipyard, we are making a smooth transition into a Museum Without Walls. We have already established partnerships with several local museums.

  • Our Captain Mannequin set is now located in the Bowers' Beach Maritime Museum in Bowers, Beach, DE.

  • Our Swedish Lady and child, plus many of our kitchen items, are now located in the Hendrickson House in Wilmington, DE.

  • Our Lenape Mannequin is now located at the Prehistoric Museum in Greenwich, NJ.

  • Our "Explore New Sweden" panels are now located in the Swedesboro-Woolwich History Museum in Swedesboro, NJ.

  • Our model of Fort Christina is now on display at the Redding City/County building, 800 N. French St., Willmington.

  • Our Cabin corner and fireplace, Black Anthony, and our educational materials are on loan through November 1st to the Kalmar Nyckel Foundation.

  • We are also serving as the "Non Profit Brand" in JA Finance Park, utilizing the Colony to Community panels as a temporary exhibit until we can create a new, youth focused exhibit at the Junior Achievement Center (JA) in Wilmington DE. This facility serves Salem County, NJ and New Castle County, DE and reaches approximately 10,000 students yearly.

  • We are actively marketing the book, Africans in New Sweden by Abdullah R. Muhammad

  • We have a nice collection of colonial tools, old but not period historical, we would like to loan to another museum. We will have some of the miniature Historical figures to loan out. Some of these will be used at JA.

  This is an overwhelming task, but promises to expand our area of influence to promote New Sweden Heritage to new audiences. Our focus will be on outreach through our Settlers' Trunks and presentations to schools and organizations. We also plan to expand our re-enactor base of volunteers.

  We are continuing to work with Old Swedes Foundation and the Delaware Swedish Colonial Society in the annual celebration of the landing of the Swedes and planning for Colonists' Day 2014, tentatively scheduled for April 5th.

  Anyone interested in assisting us please get in touch. 302-420-0464 or e-mail us at info@colonialnewsweden.org. Feel free to call Education Director Aleasa Hogate at 856-678-5511

Jeffrey R Gudzune,
Membership Chair, New Sweden Centre

Colonists' Day 2012

Enjoy this five-minute video of the 2012 celebration and day's activities.

The hand of friendship extended at the ceremony celebrating the 374th Anniversary of the landing of the Swedes and Finns at "The Rocks" in Fort Christina Park at Colonists' Day, April 14th, 2012. Bill Hutchinison, left, in the persona of Peter Minuit, greets Dennis Cokerchief of the Lenape Indian Tribe of Delaware, Inc.

375th Anniversary Conference presentations now online

Lu Ann De Cunzo of the University of Delaware talks about the struggles the early settlers faced in the Delaware Valley in this online view. Her presentation is one of many from the 375th New Sweden Anniversary Conference now available here. The conference was held Nov. 8-10 at the university. The above link will bring up a web page listing the available talks with links to the recordings.

Peter Minuit, founder of New Sweden,
named to Junior Achievement Hall of Fame

The story of New Sweden

This seven-minute video quickly tells the story of the founding of New Sweden. It is a condensed version of a 26-minute video that is available in our web store for anyone who would like to make it part of their education or interpretive program.

The story of Black Anthony

Click here to learn about Antoni Swart, the African who lived in New Sweden. This 10-page slide show is a synopsis by Abdullah Muhammad of his recently published book: Africans in New Sweden, The Untold Story. The book is now available for order in our store. Click here for ordering information.

New brochure

We're excited that we have a new brochure of New Sweden sites throughout Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland. There’s a map to show the locations and contact details for each location/organization are listed on the reverse side. Feel free to print off your own copy!

Traveling exhibit

One of our recent ventures was to support the current traveling exhibit called “Colony to Community: The Story of New Sweden” This display, developed by the American Swedish Historical Museum, is now available for your conference or special event highlighting local history. Send us an an email for more information.

Circle of Friendship

Participants at the New Sweden Forum create a "Circle of Friendship" around the New Sweden Heritage Monument. The tradition was started when the Pennsivlle, N.J. monument was dedicated June 6th, 2004. The ceremony honors the bond of friendship formed by the Lenape and the Swedish settlers of the 17th century. This year's forum was held June 6, marking the 5th Anniversary of the monument.