Biddle House

S of St. Georges on U.S. 13, St. Georges, Delaware


Street View 


Begun by the Vandergrift family in the mid-eighteenth century as a one-story, hall-plan dwelling and repeatedly enlarged through the nineteenth century by the Biddle family and others, the Vandergrift-Biddle House is significant for the changes in house form and timber-building technology in its long and complicated history. With its seven major building periods, using a variety of construction techniques including joined plank, braced frame (mortise and tenoned post and beam), and balloon frame, the Vandergrift-Biddle House has achieved both architectural significance and integrity by the process of historic accretion. For instance, the sequence of alterations in the hall hearth clearly demonstrates changing social attitudes toward cleanliness and comfort; the firebox was closed down repeatedly to provide ever more heat, while at the same time, further containing dirt and smoke. Successive generations of the Vandergrift and Biddle families also incorporated modern concepts in the plan, but never strayed from traditional patterns of architectural logic. In each period of its growth the house was rebuilt as a new and larger structure; increasingly unified on the exterior, but retaining much of its earlier fabric. The Vandergrift-Biddle House was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in December, 1978. -- Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS DE-224)

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on December 8, 1978
Reference number
Architectural styles
Other architectural type; Federal; Plank house;side hall house
Area of significance
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
C - Design/Construction
Property type
Historic function
Single dwelling
Periods of significance
1850-1874; 1800-1824; 1750-1799
Significant years
ca. 1780; 1812; 1855


18th Century (4,657)
Brick (42,464)
Built during 1780s (696)
Delaware (641)
Federal (4,600)
Have Street View (47,419)
Historic American Buildings Survey (1,238)
House (27,767)
New Castle County, Delaware (378)
Private owner (54,399)
St. Georges, Delaware (11)
Stone (26,167)
Tin (2,649)

Update Log 

  • June 19, 2017: New Street View added by Michael Miller