Tour Schedule

Ticket Required

The following are open from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. or as noted.

*Out-of-town site; requires driving

1. The Craft Shop

9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Appoquinimink Training Center

118 S. Sixth Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Parking is Available

The craft shop is located in various rooms in the Appoquinimink Training Center. You can walk from Main Street, then cross the highway at the State Police corner. Parking is available at the center. Take 299 ( Main Street), west, at the second traffic light turn, left onto Route 13 South DuPont Highway (6th Street) stay in the left lane and turn left into the center. GREENS are in the Stable behind Wilson Warner House.

2. Fairview*

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

602 Old State Road, Middletown, DE 19709

Fairview was built in 1773 by Major James Moore, who served in the American Revolution as an officer of the Delaware line. In 1778, he was captured by the British and held as a prisoner in New York for two years. Following his return to Delaware, he became a trusted advisor to President of Delaware Caesar Rodney. In 1816, Fairview was valued at $2,736.06, and several years later Moore’s grandson purchased the home. He successfully cultivated a large peach orchard on the farm and participated in developing the peach culture in Delaware.

Fairview is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is cited as one of the best-preserved examples of rural Georgian architecture in Delaware. In the mid-1800s, a series of additions were added onto the main house including a two-story brick addition to housing a kitchen. The inclusion of the kitchen onto the main house was a pattern of building that was not to become common in the area for another 40 years. Fairview remained in the Moore family until the 1920s. The owners, Reed and Katie Macmillan, purchased the home in 1994 and continued the restoration work.

3. Brookramble*

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

295 Grears Corner Road, Townsend, DE 19734

In 1804, James and Mary King Crawford built a Philadelphia townhouse style brick addition onto their small, late 18th-century farmhouse. They installed the finest Federal woodwork in this addition, including mantels, pilasters, a leaded fan window over the pediment front door and a cantilevered staircase. The frame kitchen was added c. 1890. Indoor plumbing was added in 1952 when the three back doors were blocked up.

The federal dormer windows are recreations of the original that were destroyed in an attic fire. The front stoop is a replacement based on architectural evidence. David and Allison Matsen have lived here since 1974. The house is furnished in period and family pieces.

The house is decorated with vignettes based on various religious and secular Christmas carols. Visitors can see the large brick fireplace in use for cooking.

4. Old Union Methodist Church*

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Corner of Route 13 and Union Church Road, Townsend, DE 19734

Union Church was built on a donated tract of land in 1792 which borders the Original “King’s Highway”. The first structure was built of logs and was known as Dickinson’s Chapel. In 1798, it was rebuilt as a frame building. In 1847, the cornerstone was laid for the present brick structure. The bricks were manufactured on land near this site. The one-room sanctuary includes a small vestibule and balcony seating.

The adjacent cemetery reveals the names of early settlers having been Dutch, Swedes, French Huguenots, Scotch-Irish, and English. The oldest tombstone is dated as 1799. Also buried here is Bishop Levy Scott, recognized by the Methodist Church as a major figure in our region.

Old Union Church Society was formed in 1939 to provide for the needs of the church and its grounds. An annual service is held the second Sunday in October, and a Christmas candlelight service, decorated with fresh greens takes place the first Sunday in December (12/06/15). The public is welcome. For more information visit

5. Old Drawyers Church*

Noon to 4:00 p.m.

South Route 13, Odessa, DE 19730

The history of Old Drawyers congregation may be traced to the 1670's, when the first known church, a wooden structure, was erected nearby on land purchased in 1711. Services were being held in the present house of worship by 1773. Following the congregation’s move to a new church in Odessa, the Friends of Old Drawyers was organized in 1895 to preserve and maintain the church and grounds.

Today the church is available for special occasions, including weddings. An Annual Service and Meeting is held on the first Sunday in June.

Many prominent colonial and state leaders are interred in the adjoining cemetery, including Governors Walter Bacon and Sherman Tribbitt. Cemetery lots remain available through the Friends of Old Drawyers.

Prints of Old Drawyers by noted Delaware artist, Larry Anderson, will be available for purchase, along with copies of Dorothy Colburn’s book, “Old Drawyers - The First Presbyterian Church in St. George’s Hundred.”

The bell ringers will be giving concerts at 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m.

6. Friends Meeting House

11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Route 299 ext. of Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

The Meeting House was built in 1783 by David Wilson, Sr., as a convenient place for worship for the Appoquinimink Meeting. However, in 1828 a decision occurred causing the congregation to separate into the Hicksites (followers of the rebellious Elias Hicks) and Orthodox Quakers. In the hands of the Hicksites the congregation waned, and eventually members gave up the meeting house after the death of its sole member, John Alston. The Meeting House was closed for many years and was reopened in 1946. It became affiliated with Wilmington Meeting in 1950. It is open to the public for Quaker Meeting for Worship on the first and third Sunday of each month at 11:00 a.m.

A representative of Friends will be present, to give a historical narrative about the Meeting House.

7. Delaware State Police - Troop 9

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

414 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Troop 9 was completed in the spring of 1972 and was designed by Wilmington Architect, Thomas J. Walters, along with the approval of the Winterthur Foundation. The design of the building is based on a colonial farmhouse style. The lobby is built around an outstanding fireplace with a mantel that dates back to 1775 that came from the Brandywine-Chadds Ford Mill. Troop 9’s presence within the town adds to the pleasure of living in Odessa.

8. Tree of Life Lutheran Church

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

505 Osbourne Street, Odessa, DE 19730

The church began services at its current location in December 2010. This building, containing a brick signed by George Washington, was originally built in the early 20th century by the DuPont Family as one of the many one-room schoolhouses established throughout Delaware for African-American students. The church’s current worship area is the former schoolhouse. Throughout the years, the building was a private dwelling and a daycare center, undergoing many changes, including the attachment of the former pump house, originally a separate building on the property. The building was sold to Tree of Life in June 2009.

Since then, much reconstruction and restoration have taken place, and the church includes a kitchen, a conference room, and a nursery. To make this one-room schoolhouse a place of worship, recent additions include a steeple, a lighted cross, and stained glass windows.

We welcome your visit as you tour Odessa. Parking is available.

9. St. Paul’s United Methodist Church

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

406 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

(302) 378-2420

The church will be open. Seating available.

10. Odessa Post Office

10:00 a.m. to Noon

312 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

A special pictorial cancellation commemorating Christmas in Odessa has been created. Patrons can bring their mail and Christmas cards to the post office to be canceled with this special cancellation or you can purchase an envelope and stamp and have it canceled.

There is no charge for the cancellation. Cookies will be served.

11. Odessa Fire Hall

10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

304 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Home to the Antique Show and Sale!

The Odessa Fire Company was organized in June of 1926. The first fire engine was a 1926 Hale pumper, delivered in April of 1927. The pumper remained in service until November of 1956. It was restored beginning in 1987 and completed in 1989 and is still on display at the Main Street fire station.

The first fire station building in Odessa was located across the street from the current station at the Red Men Lodge, and the original garage doors are still there. The fire company moved to its present location in 1934. Over the years, there were several additions to the building. In April 2012, the old building was leveled, and a new fire station was built with completion in May 2013. The new fire station, offices, and banquet hall now reflect the eighteenth-century structures along Main Street in Odessa.

12. Fieldstone Stable behind Wilson-Warner House

9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

202 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Fresh cut greens: white pine, scotch broom, boxwood, magnolia, and wreaths, roping. Fresh arrangements are available.

The Women’s Club of Odessa is selling fresh cut greens. Walk down the gravel driveway to the Barn. The workshops will be held in the barn.

13. Log and Frame House

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

114 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

This house was built in 1740 and restored in 1941 by Rodney Sharp. The small stone outbuilding was reproduced during the summer of 1976, from authentic plans of the Eighteenth Century Spring-House.

Plans and details of the construction of the Frame and Log House can be found in Pre-Revolutionary Architecture in Delaware by George Fletcher Bennett. The House was featured in the January-February 1981 issue of Colonial Homes magazine, and the December 1984 issue of Early American Life. The house was lived in and treasured from 1941 through 2003 by Marge and Jesse Loven and is still owned and cherished by their grandson, Shawn Goodier, and his family.

14. The Collins-Sharp House

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

2nd & High Street, Odessa, DE 19730

The Historic Odessa Foundation’s Collins-Sharp House is one of Delaware’s oldest houses dating to 1700. This picturesque building is a museum center for educational programming. Activities include cooking demonstrations using original recipes from late 18th- and early 19th-century sources. Gardening and other related duties of the colonial housekeeper are also demonstrated in the kitchen garden seasonally. Don’t miss this opportunity to step back in time to embrace the sounds, sights, and culinary delights of colonial Odessa.

15. Corbit-Calloway Memorial Library

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

115 High Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Established in 1847 as Delaware’s first free public library, and one of the earliest in the United States, Corbit-Calloway offers information services and family programs to M.O.T. residents and visitors throughout the year. The Delaware Room houses a unique and growing collection of research materials on Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Maryland. During the tour, the library will hold its traditional “Old Books Sale,” $5 per bag.

16. Sydnor House

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

203 High Street, Odessa, DE 19730

203 High Street is the home of David and Linda Sydnor. The house, commonly known as the Hotchkiss House, was built by Horace Hotchkiss and designed by Homsey Architects in 1981. The house, though contemporary in design on the inside, the exterior was built to blend in with the older homes in Odessa. The white fencing was built to reflect the period in Odessa. The roof was originally cedar shake until replaced by the current metal roof approx. 2-3 years ago. One particularly unique feature is the sun room located on the second floor rear adjacent to the master bedroom.

Mr. Hotchkiss, a graduate of Yale University, was the first curator of the Historic Homes of Odessa from 1958 to 1987 when it was owned by Winterthur Museum. He was also an author and gifted painter.

The landscape was designed by Bill Fredrick, a nationally renowned landscape architect. This is a unique house.

17. Old St. Paul’s

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

506 High Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Concerts and Tea

The cornerstone of Old St. Paul's Methodist Episcopal Church was laid in August 1851. The building replaced a small brick church on the same site, which had been built soon after 1821, the year the Methodist Church of Cantwell’s Bridge (Odessa) was founded.  The contractor and builder of Old Saint Paul’s was Henry L. Rose, and the contract was taken at $3,950. The architect was Samuel C. Sloan of Philadelphia, well-known in Philadelphia and the South, where he designed many houses, hospitals, and churches.

The building is now owned by the Women’s Club of Odessa, whose ongoing community improvement project is to restore and preserve the building. Of particular interest is the Tracker Organ, built by A.B. Felgemaker of Erie, PA, in 1885, opus 465. The instrument is a one manual with ten ranks of pipe and a walnut case. The organ was restored in 1987 by R.J. Brunner Organ Building Company of Silver Springs, PA. The restoration was funded by the Women’s Club of Odessa with matching funds from the State of Delaware.

Women's Club presents a “Tea” from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

The following are open 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. or as noted. Please ask before taking indoor photographs!

18. The Old Academy – 1843

9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

315 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

This is the third schoolhouse built on this site. The first building was a frame structure, which burned in 1843. A more permanent brick structure, built the same year, continued to function as the area school through the nineteenth century. In 1886, the school had 118 students and two teachers. It was endowed with the Corbit Library in mid-century—the oldest free public library in New Castle County, which was open three hours a week. H. Rodney Sharp purchased The Old Academy, restored it, and in 1947 gave it to the people of Odessa as a Community Center. It currently houses the offices of the Mayor and Council of Odessa and Delaware Wild Lands, Inc., who have jointly performed the very pleasing restoration of the building and grounds. The town offices are open only for Christmas in Odessa ticket sales.

19. The Williamsburg House

10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

204 High Street, Odessa, DE 19730

This house of David and Carol Sheats is a replica of the Travis House of Williamsburg, Virginia circa 1765. It was originally owned by Franklin and Alice Biggs, and completed in 1986. An addition to the back of the house was added later. Interior features include two downstairs fireplaces, heartwood pine floors, beautiful woodwork, reproduction hardware, and lighting. The house is furnished in early American antiques, as well as a few pieces made by the current owner, including a cherry dining room table. The Sheats’ collect decoys and Blue Willow Ware.

20. Davis Store

10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

205 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

The Davis Store – (circa 1824) is a 2½ story, three-plus two-bay, single pile Federal style residence and store with a rear two story brick addition. The façade brickwork is laid in Flemish bond, and the remaining walls are laid in common bond; windows are 6/6 sash with paneled shutters on the first story and louvered on the second. Begun in May 2008, a new rear addition kitchen was completed in 2009. A three-light transom tops the paneled door to the residence. The commercial entrance is composed of a central double door with a two-light rectangular transom flanked by shuttered shop windows with flanking pilasters. A shed-roof porch with chamfered posts and ogee-shaped cornice trim covers the commercial entrance. The porch on the west end was added to the building circa 1870 and reflects the same architectural lines as the front porch. Three segmental arched dormers pierce the forward slope of the gable roof. Davis Store operated from 1828 until the early 1960’s by two different Davis families.

This is the home of Carla and Jeff Pyle.

21. The Ball House of Davis Store

10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

207 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Santa Claus is coming to town. Visit Santa in the Ball House. You may take pictures. Please use the driveway.

Set back on the lot next to Davis Store is a little white building that the Pyle’s moved from behind their garage. It was the “ball house” for the Odessa Mutuals – a semi-pro baseball team formed in the late 1800’s. They played in Odessa at Memorial Park until the ball team was disbanded in the early depression years. The store, which sponsored the team, had it moved to the property.

22. Wilson-Warner House

10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

202 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Wealthy merchant David Wilson built his fine brick home in 1769, alongside his new store on Odessa’s main thoroughfare. Its L-shaped architectural plan is typical of Delaware. In 1828 when David Wilson, Jr. fell upon hard times, the house and its contents were sold at public auction to satisfy his debts. In 1903, the house was purchased by Mrs. E. Tatnall Warner. Mary Warner was a descendant of both the Wilson and Corbit families. Mrs. Warner established a trust for stewardship of the house and opened it to the public for tour. The Wilson-Warner House is possibly the oldest operating house museum in the state. Today the house is part of the enclave of museum buildings known as the Historic Odessa Foundation.

Literature themed Christmas exhibits continue at the Historic Odessa Foundation this through December 31st  with The Classic Fairytale:  Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.  You are cordially invited to step back in time through the doors of the Historic Odessa Foundation again this holiday season! For the past 30 years, the Foundation has celebrated children’s literature by recreating vignettes from the classics in one of our 18th-century houses. Our visiting public has been treated to the wonderful literary works of Charles Dickens, Louisa May Alcott, Francis Hodgson Burnett, and Lewis Carroll…just to name a few.

Tour the National Historic Register Wilson-Warner House as it has been transformed into vignettes inspired by Lewis Carroll’s book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Celebrate the book’s sesquicentennial (150 years) by getting reacquainted with the characters and remembering the fantastic scenes. Visit this unique Christmas tradition in historic Odessa and make it part of your family tradition!

23. Corbit-Sharp House

10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

118 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

William Corbit, who operated a tannery on the banks of the Appoquinimink Creek, was the town’s leading citizen when he built his handsome Georgian house in 1774. It remained in the Corbit family until 1938 when H. Rodney Sharp acquired it. Mr. Sharp restored this important National Historic Landmark, as well as, many other structures in the historic district. He is credited for the first efforts of historic preservation in the Town of Odessa.

The Corbit-Sharp House also a National Park Service Underground Railroad Network to Freedom site which was evaluated as making a significant contribution to the understanding of the Underground Railroad in American history. The Historic Odessa Foundation offers its education program Freedom Seekers: The Odessa Story to the general public during operating hours; group tours, and school tours by reservation.

Keeping in the spirit of Christmas and to celebrate children’s literature and a love of reading, our Storybook Trees are exhibited throughout the Corbit-Sharp House. This year we are showcasing up to 40 trees designed and decorated by schools, families, and various organizations, all with themes inspired by favorite children’s books. By exhibiting the trees in these beautiful period rooms, a new and larger audience is exposed to the preserved beauty of Odessa, its architecture, historical importance, and natural charm.

24. The Odessa Bank

10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

201 Main Street, Odessa, DE 19730

Currently, the Visitor Center for the Historic Houses of Odessa, owned and operated by the Historic Odessa Foundation, this very fine 19th-century building was originally erected in 1855 as the New Castle County National Bank of Odessa. Designed by well-known Philadelphia architect Samuel Sloane this Italianate building operated as a bank until 2000, finally as PNC. Shortly after the bank closed, it was purchased by the late Mr. Bayard Sharp who restored the bank for adaptive reuse and donated it to the Historic Houses of Odessa. The second and third stories of the bank house the offices and study center for the Historic Odessa Foundation, a non-profit public agency established for the support and stewardship of the Historic Houses of Odessa.

Don’t miss the special exhibit: Holiday Highlights from Christmas Past, which features our last ten holiday exhibits, a virtual photographic feast for the eyes. It is sure to inspire the spirit of Christmas in everyone!

While you’re here, visit the Holiday Serendipity Shop where each year the foundation sells holiday decorations from past exhibits and displays. Proceeds benefit School and Family Educational Programming.

Looking for gift ideas? Give the gift of membership! Be a Friend of the Historic Houses of Odessa! Join today and enjoy an entire year of exciting programs! A gift of membership to the Historic Odessa Foundation is a unique way to celebrate the holidays, show your appreciation, or share your enthusiasm for Odessa with friends! Whatever the occasion, the benefits of membership can be enjoyed throughout the year. Your support enables us to provide learning opportunities for children and adults, including weekend family programs, educational workshops, and lectures while assisting with restoration and preservation of the buildings and grounds of the Historic Houses of Odessa. Join today and receive the Historic Odessa Foundation’s annual pewter Christmas tree ornament free. HOF Memberships may be purchased in Visitors Center located in the historic Odessa Bank.

The Historic Houses of Odessa are open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Sunday 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., March through December. School and Group Tours available by reservation Monday through Sunday, year-around.

For membership information, reservations, and calendar of events, please call: (302) 378-4119 or visit our website at