Annual Antiques Market to be held on lawn of Parson Thorne Mansion

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The Parson Thorne Annual Antiques Market will be held Saturday, May 6

The Milford Historical Society, the organization that manages the Parson Thorne Mansion, announced recently that they plan to hold their annual Spring Antique Show on Saturday, May 6 rom 9 AM until 3 PM. The market will be on the lawn of the mansion known as Silver Hill.

“We hold the antiques market once every spring and once every fall,” Brooke Clendaniel of the Milford Historical Society, said. “We have several vendors who will be selling antiques, vintage items and collectibles this year. There is free parking onsite as well.”

The cost to get into the market, which includes the option to tour the mansion is just $1 and all proceeds go toward the upkeep of the mansion. According to “A History of Milford” compiled by the Milford Historical Society, there is evidence that parts of the mansion were built in the first half of the 18th century. Although officially known as Silver Hill, it is more commonly referred to as the Parson Thorne Mansion as Reverend Sydenham Thorne took possession of the property in 1785.

The mansion is an example of the old English colonial architecture that was common in that era. A book on Delaware stated that the mansion was constructed in the style of those found in Tidewater, Virginia, with a central portion flanked by two smaller wings joined by a walled passage. Although the window caps seem to be made of stone, they are actually created from wood.

The interior of the mansion has been restored to look like it did when Parson Thorne lived there. There is beautiful paneling, corner cupboards of shell design and paneled doorways.  After Thorne died, the house was placed in the hands of the Clayton family and a graveyard on the property contains the graves of Thorne as well as parents of John M. Clayton. John Darby was the next owner of the property, a nephew of Clayton before Benjamin Potter took it over. Col. Potter is best known for his bequeath to support the poor in Kent County, a fund that still exists today.

Under the ownership of Col. H.B. Fidderman, the roof lines were altered, adding dormers and lowering the roof pitch. There was no porch, only a small portico with benches.

In 1927, George H. Draper purchased the mansion and, in 1962, the Draper family presented the deed to the Milford Historical Society.

For more information about the Milford Historical Society or to learn how to volunteer to help preserve the mansion, contact [email protected]. Follow the society on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram as well.

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