Thanks to everyone involved in the Friends of Cooch’s Bridge Historic Site, 2023 has been yet another banner year for our young organization. Here are just a few of our accomplishments during 2023:
We disbursed $400,000 to begin the restoration of various buildings on the site. The funds were targeted by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs to those parts of the buildings in most urgent need of repair. The restoration work is still in progress.
We engaged a state-approved architectural firm to prepare a concept and plan for a Visitors Center on the Cooch Family-owned parcels of the Historic Site. The concept and planning work is underway.
The African American Heritage Database was announced via distribution of a professionally produced video (you can watch this on our YouTube channel). We also were awarded a second grant from Delaware Humanities to extend our research into the African American community around Cooch’s Bridge, and to host the database of findings.
An archaeological survey of the West Cornfield solved one of the Battle’s age-old mysteries by identifying the location of the British firing line. The Friends funded the survey through a special designated gift.
Contact with legislators resulted in our very first Delaware Grant-in-Aid Award—$5,000 to help fund our “signature cultural events” such as our Anniversary Weekend and Juneteenth celebrations.
We launched the first Bridge Builders Dinner, which drew nearly 70 people. The success of the inaugural event ensures it will become a regular part of our anniversary weekend.
We underwrote the composition and world premiere by the Govatos Quartet of Jonathan W. Whitney’s Cooch’s Bridge: The Family. A professional recording of the performance will be made available soon.
We hope you will consider making a year-end gift to the Friends, to help ensure that our important work can continue in the future. Giving is easy: visit our Donate page or mail your check, made payable to Friends of Cooch’s Bridge, to PO Box 85, Montchanin, DE 19710.