Georgetown dedicates new town hall, administrative offices

GEORGETOWN – Georgetown, Delaware is full of history.

Thursday, several pieces in the town’s historic puzzle came full circle.

Local, county, state and federal officials gathered Aug. 22 for the formal dedication of the new town administrative offices and town hall during a well-attended ceremony in front of 37 and 39 The Circle.

The ribbon-cutting/open house dedication marks the completion of the $1.9 million project set in motion with overwhelming referendum passage by town voters in 2015.

“Today is a special day for our town as we gather together to dedicate to public service two stately buildings here on The Circle,” said Georgetown Town Manager Eugene Dvornick.

“This is a day that we should never forget because we are moving forward and doing some great things,” said Georgetown Mayor Bill West.

The town administrative offices are based at 37 The Circle, which housed the Georgetown Fire Company for more than three decades. 

“In 1930 the fire company moved from its location on South Race Street to No. 37 The Circle where they remained until 1966, when they occupied their new quarters on South Bedford Street,” Mr. Dvornick said.

This building, the first to be completed in the two-phase project, now serves as the administrative office hub for the town of Georgetown.

The building at No. 39 The Circle was originally constructed in 1918 and was given by the Wilmington Trust Company to the town of Georgetown for a town hall in 1965.

Sen. Pettyjohn snaps a photo.

“These buildings have some history,” said Mayor West. “The fire hall, when we were demolishing the inside on the wall, we found nails where the firemen hanged their suits, and above the nails were the names of the firemen. So, fire company came over and took pictures. That’s history. There were old bottles found in the foundation that were unique.”

Mayor West also noted that hidden door pockets in the town hall building were remodeled and preserved.

And, on display in a corner display of the new town hall is a piece of metered history that dates to the late 19th century.

“On the wall is a water meter that was used when Tunnel had the water company and then sold it to the town of Georgetown. The date on the water meter is 1898,” said Mayor West. “There is more history. We took that and had that redone.”

In addition, the POW/MIA Chair of Honor was moved from its outside location to an indoor display in town hall.

The new town hall serves as a staging venue for town council, planning and zoning and board of adjustment sessions. There is a conference room/executive session area and a desk/office quarters for the mayor.

Town leaders offered special thanks to PNC Bank; John L. Briggs & Company; Davis, Bowen & Friedel; Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr; the U.S. Department of Agriculture; and the taxpayers of Georgetown, who by a 146-37 margin cast approval authorizing the town to borrow up to $1,925,000 for capital improvements to the current town hall and adjacent annex building on The Circle.

“These buildings have a lot of history and they’ve got a lot of meaning,” Mayor West said. “I think it is something the townspeople are going to be proud of. I’m proud of it and I know council is.”

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