1945: “The Philadelawareans” by John Munroe

John Munroe ca. 1954

On April 16, 1945 John A. Munroe of the University of Delaware, gave an address at the annual meeting of the Historical Society of Delaware titled “The Philadelawareans:  A Study in the Relations between Philadelphia and Delaware in the Late Eighteenth Century.” John Munroe (1914-2006) was an exceptional historian of Delaware, earning a PhD in history from the University of Pennsylvania. He taught at the University of Delaware in 1942 until 1982, and also served at the department chair for 17 years. His publications and works centered on Delaware and he is recognized as “the dean of Delaware Historians.”

John Munroe’s presentation on “The Philadelawareans” explored the connections between Philadelphia and Delaware. Munroe’s work emphasized the Philadelphia connections with Delaware and the ease in which people traveled between the two locations. He argued the fluidity between the two places is evidenced in the shipping trade, in the road through Delaware to Philadelphia during the American Revolution, and also it can be traced through printed materials.

“The Philadelawareans” was well received by those in attendance at the Historical Society of Delaware meeting. Munroe published this material article in the Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography in April 1945.  Throughout his career as a historian he published more than 80 articles and numerous books. Munroe’s final book, published in 2004 at 90 years old, contained a collection of essays relating to Delaware and included his 1945 piece “The Philadelawareans.”


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