Rosedale Beach on Indian River in March of 1970

August 31, 2016

In the August 23 edition, the Cape Gazette published a photograph from 1915 showing bathers on a boardwalk at Oak Orchard.  A reader called and asked to see some information on nearby Rosedale Beach on Indian River. 

That’s a story with a long history including public bathing in the shallows of the river, amusements, occasional baptisms and live music from some of the nation’s most well-known black artists from the early 20th century including Duke Ellington and Ella Fitzgerald.

The band Cream, with Eric Clapton on guitar, at one time recorded a cover of a song called Crossroads in which a community called Rosedale is mentioned. The version included pieces of two songs by legendary blues writer and performer Robert Johnson: Crossroads and Traveling Riverside Blues.

“Going down to Rosedale with my baby by my side, where you can still buy a house babe, by the riverside.” The name is derived from the first names of two of the area’s historical movers and shakers, Rosetta and Dale Street. This aerial photograph by Lloyd Teitsworth and Dee Andrews from March of 1970 shows the idyllic little riverfront community called Rosedale on either side of Frames Point and at the end of Layton Davis Road where it intersects with Rosedale Road/River Road. Oak Orchard is down the river (to the right and out of sight in this photograph) from Rosedale Beach.

  • Delaware Cape Region History in Photographs, published every Tuesday in the Cape Gazette, features historical photos from Delaware's Cape Region - particularly - and from throughout Sussex County and Delaware generally.

    Readers are invited to submit photos of historic interest. They can be mailed to the Cape Gazette at PO Box 213, Lewes, DE 19958, or via email to

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