From the pages of the Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times, Sept. 19, 1990


From the Sun-Times
Sept. 19, 1990

Construction underway on Relief Route in Smyrna
By John Flood

Pretty soon when people talk of driving up Rt. 6, they’re going to mean it quite literally.

New bridges carrying Rt. 6 and Rt. 30 over the planned Smyrna Bypass will be finished this fall. If the weather holds, traffic should be moving over them by the end of November, said Michele C. Ackles, manager of public relations for the Delaware Department of Transportation....

The completion of these projects means the start of a much larger project – the Smyrna Bypass itself. Bid for the Smyrna Bypass will be opened Tuesday, Sept. 25, with construction commencing sometime this fall.

That project will include a highway from just north of the Smyrna Rest Area to Road 325. Interchanges will be just north and just south of Smyrna....

Blendt donates painting to Smyrna Museum

During the 1880s through the first quarter of the 1900s the Thomas Clyde was one of Delaware’s most famous coastwise pleasure steamers. It was constructed in 1878 by Pusey and Jones of Wilmington for Ottis and Mott of New Jersey, and for all those years plied the Delaware Bay and River from Philadelphia to Collins Beach and later Woodland Beach.

Woodland Beach, as a summer resort, had its ups and downs form after the Civil War until the late 1890s when James Mott, the part owner of the Thomas Clyde, purchased the entire Woodland Beach area. Several years later he bought up surrounding farms, personally paid to construct a new road across the marsh to his holdings and developed Woodland Beach as “the place to go.” At that time he also purchased full ownership of the Thomas Clyde from his partner, and commissioned H.H. Fried to execute a painting of his ship.

By 1910 Woodland Beach boasted over 50 summer cottages, a hotel, a dance and picnic pavilion, a surf house, a small amusement area and a well-constructed pier which served as a port-of-call for river steamboats carrying both produce and passengers to Woodland Beach. The Thomas Clyde regularly brought as many as 1200 vacationers at one landing to see the sights, reside at the hotel, stroll the boardwalk, ride the amusements, or take up abode at individual cottages.

After 1912, Mott began to sell his properties in the area, and by the Depression years had completely given up control, though he sill owned several farms in the area and resided on one of them near the Blendts and the Snyders. In 1925 Mott sold the Thomas Clyde whose owners converted it for multi-use. The conversion was not a financial success and thus the Thomas Clyde was abandoned in 1929.

Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Blendt, along with Mrs. Blendt’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Snyder, were old and close friends with Mr. and Mrs. James Mott and their daughters. After the demise of Mrs. Mott in the early 1940s the remainder of the family moved to Florida. After the death of Mott in the mid-1950s, Mr. and Mrs. Blendt were given the painting of the Thomas Clyde by the Mott daughters.

Mrs. Blendt, a charter member, early six-year director, and strong and continued supporter of the Duck Creek Historical Society, gave this painting of the Thomas Clyde to the society as a reminder to visitors at the Smyrna Museum of Duck Creek’s maritime heritage.

George Caley, one of the founders and ex-president of the Duck Creek Historical Society, graciously accepted the gift on behalf of the society....

Smyrna hears water bill complaints
By John Flood

Apartment owners called Smyrna’s newly instituted policy of minimum water and sewer bills unfair before town council Monday night.
At its last meeting council had accepted a proposal by the utility committee for each apartment to receive a minimum bill of $15 a month for water and sewer service.

Previously a single bill was sent for each meter, not every rental unit. For example, a five-unit apartment building with one meter could have received a bill as small as $15 a month. Under the new proposal that same building would receive a minimum $75 a month bill....