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 Delaware County Institute of Science
(1833-    )

The Delaware County Institute of Science was founded on September 21, 1833 by five friends with a mutual interest in science and natural history: George Miller, John Miller, Minshall Painter, George Smith and John Cassin. Membership soon began to increase, and it was decided to obtain some appropriate real estate to house the new Institute. An application for corporation privileges was granted in 1836, and "a hall of modest pretensions" was built in Upper Providence in 1837. Meetings were held there for the next three decades. In 1850 it was decided to move the Institute to Media, Pennsylvania, the new county seat for Delaware County. The building that still houses the Institute today was built there in 1867. As before, the mission of the organization was to "promote the study and diffusion of general knowledge" and also to establish a museum.

The Institute today sponsors a lecture program and field trips, and houses a substantial library of several thousand books and publications on natural history, including numerous volumes of local significance. The Institute also publishes Proceedings of the Delaware Institute of Science. The museum contains exhibits of mounted birds and animals; a herbarium of Delaware County plants; worldwide fossils, shells and corals; coins; historical objects; a collection of microscopes; and a mineral collection (curated by second vice president J. Roger Mitchell). The mineral collection includes specimens from many famous localities in the local area, as well as specimens from elsewhere collected by members of the Institute during the 19th century.

Membership is open to all individuals and organizations for a small fee. The Institute is open to the public on Mondays, Thursdays and most Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., excluding holidays, and admission is free. It is located at 11 Veteran's Square, Media, Pennsylvania 19063 (telephone: 610-566-5126).

MITCHELL, J.R. (2006) Personal communication.
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WILSON, Wendell E. (2017)
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