Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 134,007 pages of information and 212,853 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
DuPont was founded in 1802 by Eleuthère Irénée du Pont, using capital raised in France and gunpowder machinery imported from France. The company was started at the Eleutherian Mills, on the Brandywine Creek, near Wilmington, Delaware, USA two years after he and his family left France to escape the French Revolution. It began as a manufacturer of gunpowder, as du Pont had noticed that the industry in North America was lagging behind Europe and saw a market for it. The company grew quickly, and by the mid nineteenth century had become the largest supplier of gunpowder to the United States military, supplying as much as half of the powder used by the Union Army during the American Civil War.