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1809–1811. 1854–1855 enlarged, John G. Lankey. 1935–1936 remodeled, Laussat R. Rogers for WPA. Market St., east side of the Green
  • Arsenal (W. Barksdale Maynard)
  • Arsenal (Photograph by Matthew Aungst)
  • Arsenal (Photograph by Matthew Aungst)

The U.S. government allocated money for arsenals in 1804, and a year later Benjamin Henry Latrobe and Robert Mills marked the future site of this one on their town survey. The original one-story building, perhaps with arched wagon entrances into the gable ends, housed cannon, grape shot, powder, and supplies. Later, it served as a barracks, cholera hospital, post office, custom house, and railroad office. The Trustees of the Common took over in 1852 and established the New Castle Institute, adding a second story (as seen in the brick-work) and Italianate cupola and changing the fenestration and doorways. It remained a school until 1930. A remodeling moved the spirited cannon-and-eagle bas relief from north gable to south and replaced the cupola with a more Colonial-style one, eliminating, according to a WPA newsletter, the “excrescences of the rococo period of American architecture.” For years, the building has housed a restaurant. A renovation (1999–2001, Bernardon Haber Holloway) replaced the cedar shake roof with terne metal (steel sheets covered with a protective alloy finish).

Writing Credits

W. Barksdale Maynard


What's Nearby


W. Barksdale Maynard, "Arsenal", [New Castle, Delaware], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Delaware

Buildings of Delaware, W. Barksdale Maynard. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2008, 155-156.

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