Tom Carper, U.S. Senator for Delaware

I first came to Delaware in 1973 and was instantly enamored with the First State. The beauty and distinctiveness of Delaware’s landscape and people is something that I have long admired. Although Delaware may be one of the smallest states in our union, its economic and cultural contributions have been substantial. Delaware tells a story of opportunity, innovation, tradition, civility and community that stretches back before the founding of our nation and continues to this day.

State Flag - Right Color

In many ways, Delaware has always led our great nation from the front. Its history begins in the 1600s with the landing of some of the earliest American settlers in the Delaware Valley. During the Revolutionary War, Col. John Haslet's 1st Delaware Regiment, known as the “Blue Hen’s Chicks”, was one of the premier regiments in the Continental Army. The Blue Hen’s Chicks were responsible for the victory at the Battle of Brandywine and for the capture of Philadelphia from the British. At the conclusion of the war, delegates from Delaware continued the tradition of leading and argued for the need of a more unified federal government with equal representation for each state. On December 7, 1787, Delawareans led our fledgling nation once again and became the first state to ratify the Constitution.

 Today, Delaware remains at the forefront of American ingenuity and progress. Delawareans have set themselves apart as masters of industry and cultivators of the land. The success of Delaware’s economy can be traced back centuries to the early gunpowder factories of Irenee DuPont all the way through to the groundbreaking research facilities and financial giants that dominate Wilmington’s skyline today. Despite Delaware’s embrace of large industry, it has not forgotten its roots in agriculture. Our farmers are known internationally for their high quality corn, apples, poultry and other crops. It is a point of state pride to know that the bounty of Delaware is helping to nourish people throughout the world.

Map of DelawareSince its founding, Delaware has practiced a culture of civility that is pervasive through our villages, towns, cities and government. Each year, thousands of Delawareans gather in Georgetown on the Thursday after Election Day for Return Day – a 220-year-old political tradition that is unique to Delaware – to set aside their differences and recommit to the common goal of building a better Delaware in years to come. Some refer to this display of civility as the “Delaware Way,” and it echoes the First State’s strong sense of community, carrying with it a message of unity for mutual progress.

Delaware offers its citizens and visitors a unique experience that sets it apart from the other 49 states. Although it may be small geographically, Delaware is mighty, and its brawn continues to grow every day. Through the strength of its citizens, businesses and traditions, Delaware has led our nation from the very beginning.

It has been the greatest honor of my life to serve Delaware. I would like to invite everyone to come and experience the state that I have come to love so much. Whether it’s through my website or in person, I encourage you to learn more about Delaware’s story and culture. We hope to see you soon.