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The Green

Dover’s center square, The Green at State Street, is the site of the Delaware Supreme Court, the Delaware State House Museum, and the Kent County Courthouse. One of the nation's most historic sites, it was the location of many rallies, troop reviews, and other patriotic events. The square was laid out in 1717, in accordance with William Penn's orders of 1683. It was here Delaware voted to ratify the U.S. Constitution on December 7, 1787, making it the first state to do so. The Green was the site of early fairs and markets when the city was the county seat and then state capital. A cenotaph in honor of Caesar Rodney, an enigmatic character from the American Revolution, is situated in the cemetery of the Christ Episcopal Church on this square. During the Revolutionary War, the Delaware Regiment gathered on the Green before marching to meet General George Washington in the north. Close to this square was where Caesar Rodney commenced his famous ride to Philadelphia to sign the Declaration of Independence. Old residences, dating back to 1728, around the Green preserve the colonial charm for which Dover is distinguished. The Green now hosts political rallies and public events such as the Spring and Summer Performing Arts Series, 4th of July festivities, and caroling during the Christmas season. "Old Dover Days" is a special event held here in May, when many private homes and buildings are open to the public.