East Second Street
(known as Warmoes, Land or Market Street
and earlier just the Market Place or Plain)
The original grants of lots along the Strand or first row were three
hundred feet In depth (to what is now approximately Second Street). Behind
these lots stretched the green or common land bounded roughly by what to
now Second Street on the East, Harmony Street on the north, Fourth Street
on the west, and Delaware Street on the south. Fourth Street was the
continuation of Thwart Street, present Chestnut Street, as the main road
from the fort to Delaware Street, which became the road to Maryland in
1671 after Augustine Herman's cartway was cleared. Between 1676 and 1880,
Second Street was extended north to the foot dyke over the marsh which
led to Swanwick.
After William Penn's arrival In 1682, he set aside market days and the
southeastern part of the green was designated as the market place. This
added traffic and business soon turned the boundary line and foot patch
along the back of the Strand lots Into a cartway and finally the named
street of the "old Dutch map".
Until 1707, no parts were sold off the west end of the original Strand
lots and no buildings were standing along the Green (Second Street)
except the house of James Crawford near the corner of Second and Delaware
Streets (1675). In 1707 Thomas Janvier and John Brewster sold to the
committee for building a Presbyterian meeting house, two pieces of land
totaling 50 feet In breadth along the green and In depth only 50 feet
back on the Strand lots.
In 1720, John VanGezell divided his 60 foot Strand lot (the second lot
north of Delaware Street) and sold to Hester Glen a lot 23'-9" on the green
and 103' in depth toward the Strand. Next George Hogg's property, next
property north of Hester Glen was divided and in 1741 George Hogg Jr. had a
"mansion house" fronting the green which still stands today behind frame and
brick fronts on Nos. 15 and 17 East Second Street. In 1730, VanGezell sold
the southwestern part of his lot fronting the green to John McGhee. This
was the origin ofa row of dwellings from Delaware Street to the church
replacing out-houses, stables and carriage houses formerly belonging to the
Until 1800, buildings on Second Street north of the Presbyterian meeting
house were chiefly stables and the dwellings of servants of Strand property owners.
In 1802, John Aull, carpenter, built three frame dwellings known as Aull's row
near the Harmony Street end of Second Street, and later (1804) bought them for
dwellings for him and his family. These houses still stand with certain alterations
and are numbered 47, 49 and 51 East Second Street.
On the site of the present Town Hall stood a frame market shed. The street
was lowered 5 feet after 1804 and a similar market shed was located on this
lower level. When the Town Hall was built in 1823, again a similar shed was
attached behind this building.
At the time Second Street was lowered, the properties along the
east side of the street gained 8 feet of ground.