Delaware and Delaware County (Images of America)
by Jeff Darbie and Delaware County Historical Society
From its early founding to becoming a university town, from the interurban railroad era to the famous Little Brown Jug harness race, Delaware and Delaware County, Ohio, have many stories to tell. Pres. Rutherford B. Hayes was born here. Vincente Minnelli, set designer, director, and father of actress Liza Minnelli, spent his youth in Delaware. Delaware and Delaware County were both established in 1808. Ohio Wesleyan University opened in the heart of Delaware in 1842 and is still a major presence in the community. Starting in the 1850s, railroads made Delaware an important regional center of commerce and industry. The trains carried products ranging from grapes to chairs to city transit buses. Today, Delaware County is one of the fastest-growing counties in the nation. Even so, it has retained much of its rural landscape. The city of Delaware is home to some 34,000 residents but still has the character of a classic Midwestern courthouse town. In these pages, the reader will discover the story of Delaware and of Delaware County communities such as Ashley, Galena, Ostrander, Powell, Radnor, Shawnee Hills, and Sunbury.