Stories Behind Our “Village Greens”

For almost three hundred years, the eastern edge of “Queen Village” was a nexus of commerce and domesticity. Direct access to the river offered trades such as merchants, ship captains, joiners, and sail makers ample employment opportunities. Other residents supported the economy by working in myriad occupations such as tailors, tavern keepers, blacksmiths, and coopers.

Only a few remnants remain from this bustling time in our neighborhood’s history. In the 1960s, preparation for the construction of I-95 began with the demolition of hundreds of buildings along the eastern edge of Queen Village. Gloria Dei (Old Swedes’) Church, founded by some of our earliest settlers, was fortunately spared the wrecking ball. Other significant structures such as Stephen Decatur’s residence and the Mason-Dixon survey site are acknowledged today by historical markers.

While the following buildings are no longer standing, the stories behind the structures offer insight into this lost history.