The town of Milford originally lay north of the Mispillion River (the dividing line between Kent and Sussex Counties). The area south of the Mispillion River was one grand estate of some 1500 acres. Over the years land was sold off and homes were built for the families of those who owned the property. Most of the homes within the block of South Walnut Street and Causey Avenue are these homes. Causey Mansion is all that remains of the original estate. The town of Milford now lay in the two southern counties of Delaware.
Causey Mansion Historical Owners
1680 ~ 1694 Henry Bowman
1695 ~ 1700 Nathaniel Bowman
1700 ~ 1729 John Bowman Sr.
1729 ~ 1734 John Bowman Jr.
1734 ~ 1737 Daniel Walsh
1737 ~ 1757 Mathew Moulton
1757 ~ 1775 Ann Moulton Crapper & Levin Crapper (Georgian home built in 1763)
1775 ~ 1777 Moulton Crapper
1777 ~ 1797 Zaddock Crapper
1797 ~ 1806 Daniel Rogers
1806 ~ 1844 J. Louder Layton
1844 ~ 1849 Joshua Layton
1849 ~ 1871 Peter Causey (modified to Greek Revival home in 1855
1871 ~ 1902 William & Anna Causey
1902 ~ 1931 Joseph & Agnes Holland
1931 ~ 1944 Wilson & Lillian Vinyard
1944 ~ 1983 Caroline Vinyard
1983 ~ 1986 Vincent Esposito
1986 ~ 2005 Kenneth & Francis Novak (1st used as a B&B)
2005 ~ 2014 Joseph & Jeanne Connolley
2014 ~ present Joseph Phillips & Jan Broulik
The most well-known historic home in Milford, Delaware is the Causey Mansion, which sits on a triangle of land at the intersection of South Walnut Street, Causey Avenue (formally known as Depot Street) and South East 2nd Street. The mansion’’s yellow brick exterior has been a Milford landmark for centuries. The home was built in 1763 for Levin Crapper, a landowner and magistrate. In 1855, Governor Peter F. Causey remodeled the home to how it looks today. The home is in the Greek Revival style with French accents, such as window caps and detailed grill-work in the small third-story windows. Governor Causey replaced the original pitched roof and created a third story with a flat, low pitched roof and widow’s walk. Several square pillars were added to the southwest wing with four large windows in the Main Wing. Before being owned by Governor Causey, the mansion was home to another Delaware Governor, Daniel Rogers, who was originally from Virginia. Governor Rogers was appointed to fill the unexpired term of Gunning Bedford, who died in office. He was also the husband of Esther Crapper, a descendant of Levin Crapper. Governor Rogers died at the mansion, and was originally buried on the grounds. The city moved his remains to the Odd Fellows Cemetery on the north end of town.One unique aspect of the Causey Mansion is a well-preserved slave quarters. The outbuilding served as shelter for the house servants, with one lower room with a brick floor and a large fireplace. One interesting feature of the slave quarters is a large scooped-out dent in the wall at the base of a ladder stairway. This modification was made, so legend has it, to permit one of the servants, who was not a small woman, to get up to her room. Governor Causey made his fortune in the tanneries, mills, farms and the ships that he owned. His vessels, all built in Milford, were used to ship grains and other products to Philadelphia and those same vessels returned dry goods to the Milford region. Governor Causey died in Milford and his grave can be found at the Christ Episcopal Churchyard. Early in the 20th century, the Joseph Holland family called the mansion home until the 1930’s when Captain Wilson M. Vineyard purchased it. Mr. Vineyard owned and operated the Vineyard Shipyard in Milford.