The first permanent settlement in Delaware was established by the New Sweden Company in 1638. The region was conquered by the Dutch in 1655, and then ceded to England after the capture of New Amsterdam in 1664. After becoming an English possession, Delaware was governed as part of New York until 1682, when it became part of William Penn’s Pennsylvania holdings. Delaware never officially became its own separate colony, though in 1704 Penn permitted Delaware to form its own assembly, allowing it for most intents and purposes to act as an independent colony.

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