Drone Footage Captured At This Abandoned Delaware Mill Is Truly Grim

In 1831, Joseph Bancroft opened a textile company on the banks of the Brandywine, called Bancroft Mills. The site grew from the original small paper mill to a large cotton-finishing factory widely regarded as one of the best in the world. The large complex was active and bustling until it was shuttered in 1961, a victim of globalization and a shift away from industry in the area. The Wilmington Piece Dye company bought the closed factory and held on to it until their bankruptcy filing in 2003.

From there, developers tossed around plans to renovate and build condominiums, and 46 units were built along the back of the complex, right on the river. The Bancroft Mills Condominiums are gorgeous tributes to the history of this large mill.

The rest of the property, however, has not been so fortunate. In May of 2015, a devastating fire tore through the abandoned buildings, halting any further plans for development at the site. Bancroft Mill was left largely untouched and mostly forgotten until this past November, when a large fire again swept through the complex, creating such a large inferno that the grounds were still smoldering a week later. You can almost smell the smoke in this drone video, which was taken less than ten days after firefighters gained control of the blaze and closed that chapter of the historic Mill’s story.

Bancroft Mills can be seen from two different parks in Wilmington. Head out on the trails at Alapocas Run State Park or Rockford Park to get a look at this eerie, abandoned complex. You’ll certainly get a memorable view of a complex that has a history unlike any other place in our state.

Bancroft Mills is one spot on our Haunted Delaware Road Trip, so if you visit, you might want to take a look at the other nearby creepy sites.