Chateau Country: Du Pont Estates in the Brandywine Valley
Originally from France, the du Pont family settled in the Brandywine River Valley. Chateau Country is an intimate portrait of the houses built by this Delaware dynasty. Their first dwelling was a modest six-room house just steps from the gunpowder mills that made the du Ponts wealthy. One hundred years later, their largest house had 176 rooms and thirty-six servants on 2,300 acres of land. Since company founder E.I. du Pont built Eleutherian Mills in 1802, almost one hundred houses have been built nearby and occupied by his descendants. Many spectacular estate houses have been razed, but thirty-three du Pont family properties that still exist are explored and accompanied by anecdotes. Some, including Eleutherian Mills, Longwood, Gibraltar, Nemours, and Winterthur, are open to the public; others remain hidden behind stone walls. Chateau Country takes readers inside these houses and describes a way of life that has all but disappeared. 272 pages with 174 photos, 29 prints, and 33 drawings.