Unique look at Second Street in the 1940s

January 7, 2023

Thousands of people have wandered through the St. Peter’s Episcopal Church cemetery on Second Street in downtown Lewes. With headstones dating back to the early 1700s, the church and cemetery have remained a constant in an ever-changing world.

This 1941 photograph is shot from a unique angle. Most photographers try to capture the beautiful church with its towering steeple, but John Vachon made a choice to shoot back toward Second Street.

The focal point of the street is a building very familiar to ice cream aficionados, as it’s been the home of King’s Ice Cream since the early 1980s; even the awning looks pretty similar today. The buildings on either side of King’s also remain mostly intact.

The only building razed from this photograph is the one to the far right, which was replaced with a brick building that was home to Mellon Bank, then Citizens Bank and now Compass Real Estate.

If anyone is willing to share photographs of Lewes from the early 1900s through the 1980s, send them to


  • 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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