1607 First permanent European settlement (Virginia)
1614 Dutch come to New Amsterdam
1620 English arrive in Massachusetts Bay Colony
1626 Swedish King Gustavus Adolphus signs charter for "Swedish South Company" to make settlements in hitherto
unoccupied ground
1638 Swedish Settlement at Fort Christina near present day Wilmington
1643 Johannes Printz, third Governor, settles at Tinicum as the seat of his government.  Comes with specific instructions to treat
the "wild nations" with humanity and respect
1644 William Penn and John Blunston born in England
1645 Printz builds grist mill on Karakung (later known as Mill Creek, then Cobbs Creek)
1648 Dutch build Fort Beeversreed (the beaver road) near present day Penrose Ferry Bridge
Rising succeeds Printz as Governor of New Sweden
1655 Dutch gain control of "South River" (Delaware River)
1673 Inhabitants of South River travel to New Amsterdam. Request and are granted rights in the government, free trade and
"freedom of conscience" (
1676 Court at Upland begins to sit. Later moved to "Kingsessing in the Schuylkill"
First involvement of William Penn in Delaware Valley when called upon to mediate land dispute in New Jersey
1681 Quaker William Penn receives charter for land west of Delaware River. Named "Pennsylvania" (Penn's Woods) in honor of
Admiral William Penn, his father..
1682 William Penn arrives in Philadelphia
1682 John Blunston and other Quakers from Darbyshire arrive and settle Darby Township
Darby Friends Meeting organized
1688 Quakers and Mennonites in Germantown join in first anti-slavery protest in America
1701 Penn signs "Charter of Privileges" guaranteeing representative government and religious freedom
1701 William Bartram, (Father to Botanist John Bartram) joins with other residents to complain that a proposed road in Darby is
"unnecessary and too expensive"
1714 John Blunston, Caleb Pusey and others join in anti-slavery advises (more)
1737 Infamous "Walking Purchase" creates friction with Indian nations
1743 Darby Library founded
1751 Inscription on State House Bell (aka "Liberty Bell"  "Proclaim Liberty Throughout all the land, unto all the inhabitants hereof"
chosen. Believed to honor 50th anniversary of Charter of Privileges. Possible connection with
John Blunston.
Full verse from Leviticus reads:
"And ye shall hallow the 50th year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: It shall be a
jubilee unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession and ye shall return every man unto his family
."Levitcus 25:10
1754 Tension on frontier leads to start of French and Indian War
1756 Quakers withdraw from government
1775 Revolutionary War begins at Lexington and Concord.    Darby Fire Company #1 organized.
1776 Declaration of Independence
1790 First Federal Census
1805 Present Darby Friends Meetinghouse built
1830's Anti-Slavery movement gains strength. State house Bell taken as symbol of anti-slavery movement and becomes known
as "Liberty Bell"
1837 Newspaper advertises twice daily runs between Philadelphia and Darby by omnibus (text)
1850 Fugitive Slave Law passed. Underground Railroad activity in and around Darby
1853 Darby Borough incorporates and breaks away from Darby Township.
1859 First horse drawn trolleys arrive in Darby
Return to home page
Return to Darby Past
Circa 1734 1006 Main Street built
1860 Lincoln enected president.
1861 Civil War begins