The Community of Dunleith

The Federal Housing Act of 1949 established a goal of “a decent home and a suitable living environment for every American family.” However, a segregated housing market put this goal beyond the reach of African American veterans. In that year, Delaware Community Homes Inc. purchased a tract of land from members of the du Pont family through the Rogers Trust. The property, released specifically for the construction of Dunleith Estates in 1950-1951, was the first subdivision in suburban New Castle County to offer new housing to African American veterans. Dunleith was named after the nearby du Pont mansion. The streets in Dunleith were named for prominent African American persons or institutions. Two local churches, Coleman Memorial Methodist Church and Community Presbyterian Church were established in the neighborhood during the 1950s to serve residents’ spiritual needs. In addition, the Dunleith Community School was completed in 1957. It not only served the educational needs of local African American students in grades K thru 9, but was also the center for many recreational activities until 1970. Dunleith was a truly blended community, where families of all socio-economic levels lived, worshipped, were educated and played in harmony.

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The Delaware Public Archives operates a historical markers program as part of its mandate. Markers are placed at historically significant locations and sites across the state. For more information on this program, please contact Connor Graham at (302) 744-5019 or via email at

LOCATION: Anderson Dr., New Castle