History

Posted on: August 5th, 2014 by

Trinity Vicinity is a small neighborhood located in the west side of the city of Wilmington, Delaware. Built primarily in the 1880′s and consisting of examples of Victorian “stick” architecture, the northern section of the neighborhood was designated as a historic district in the 1990′s. Originally built for middle class citizens, the neighborhood went through a tumultuous period in the 1960′s and 1970′s due to a number of factors, including the building of I-95 and riots generated by the murder of Martin Luther King. The Urban Homesteading act passed in the 70′s began the regeneration that continues to this day. The Trinity Vicinity Neighborhood Association is the official representation of our neighborhood to local government. It is the place to voice our concerns and contribute to the community. We continue to strive to make our small section of Wilmington a wonderful place to live.

Trinity Vicinity Neighborhood in Google Maps

“Between 1870 and 1880, the population of Wilmington grew almost thirty percent, from 31,000 to 44,000 citizens. During the decade of the 1870s, fueled by Public Works improvements such as the construction of the 35 million-gallon Cool Spring Reservoir and installation of accompanying water lines to nearby areas, interest in developing the Trinity Vicinity area became apparent. In 1870, Reverend Patrick Reilly formed a partnership with Dr. Philip Plunkett and William Russell to improve and subdivide the former campus of St. Mary’s College. The company, known as Reilly, Plunkett, Russell & Company, was active through most of the 1870s, and sold building lots on the block bounded by W. 10th, N. Madison, W. 11th and N. Jefferson Streets, although no original residential structures remain. The balance of the acreage Reilly retained was mostly sold off between 1874 and 1884, such as the parcel where the Sacred Heart Oratory and related complex now stands. Most of these homes were speculatively developed and sold to middle class residents. A sampling of professions of Trinity Vicinity residents in 1895 indicates a strong skilled and professional worker base. Two Jewelers, two architects, three builders, three attorneys, three insurance professionals, three engineers, a judge, a physician and a newspaper editor helped make up the urban fabric of late 19th century Trinity Vicinity. Additionally, fifteen residents worked for railroads, such as the Philadelphia Wilmington & Baltimore Railroad or the Pennsylvania Railroad, in various capacities, and one resident was the foreman of the famed Harlan & Hollingsworth Ship and Railcar Yards on the Christina River.”

– Excerpt from the 2005 Home Tour Brochure, by John Kurth, Historian