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About Sussex

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ABOUT US

Sussex County, Delaware is lauded as the fastest growing county in the fastest growing state in the Northeast, boasting a diverse landscape that is well suited for everyone from retirees eager to enjoy an active lifestyle along our sandy beaches to young families putting down roots in our quaint communities. As an intersection of commerce, culture, and character, residents and visitors alike enjoy all that the community has to offer, from Fortune 500 companies and farmers’ markets to fine dining and family-style fare.

Sussex County is an economy marked by continual growth and thriving innovation. New businesses thrive in the fertile land of low taxes, while the well-established businesses of the county continue to grow and prosper as major manufacturers and national brands. Interior finishing for corporate jets, fulfilling e-commerce orders, developing lifesaving vaccines, and brewing craft beers are just a few areas of industry that call Sussex County, Delaware home.

Sussex County’s location, low taxes, temperate weather, and beautiful landscapes, have helped to make it an attractive new home for new residents – the county’s population has grown 7 percent between 2010 and 2014, outpacing the state and other counties in the region. Your business can be part of the rich, Sussex County story. All you have to do is explore.

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LOCATION

Located in the southern-most portion of the First State, Sussex County is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean on the east and bordered by the Eastern Shore counties of Maryland to the south and west. At 938 square miles, Sussex County is the largest county in Delaware and on the tri-state Delmarva Peninsula. Our clean, five-star rated beaches are a favorite retreat – and just a short, 90-minute drive away for people traveling from Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, Md. to Wilmington, Del., and Philadelphia, Pa. Just a few miles inland from the coast, farms fill the landscape, rivers roll through historic communities, and life is a bit more relaxed away from bright lights of the big cities.

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HISTORY

First discovered by Dutch settlers looking to establish a whaling colony in the early 17thcentury, the area was part of a land grant chartered to William Penn by the King of England in 1683. Named for Penn’s home county of Sussex, England, Sussex County has a colorful history, from border disputes with the Calverts of neighboring Maryland and battles at Lewes during the War of 1812 to being a stop on the Underground Railroad and home to the one-of-a-kind post-election rite known as Return Day, when political winners and losers come together to literally ‘bury the hatchet’ every two years.

Sussex County is unique in its own right in many ways. In fact, it’s the birthplace of the modern poultry industry, when a clerical error in 1923 resulted in Cecile Steele of Ocean View receiving 500 chickens instead of the 50 chicks she had ordered for her small egg-laying operation. With a healthy dose of ingenuity and a dash of luck, Mrs. Steele, in true Sussex County fashion, rolled up her sleeves and hatched an entirely new industry in which birds were grown to be sold for meat, giving Sussex County the distinction as the birthplace of the broiler industry. Today, Sussex County leads all U.S. counties in the number of broilers raised and sold, at some 174 million annually.

Address Sussex County Admin Building
2 The Circle
P.O. Box 589
Georgetown, DE 19947
Phone (302) 855-7770
Email econdev@sussexcountyde.gov