Contributors from our collections staff

Brenton Grom


Brenton joined the Delaware Historical Society in 2016. As Curator of Special Collections and Head of Library Academic Programs, he oversees the research library’s archival collections, public outreach, and Harry N. Baetjer III Junior Fellows Program. His current research is on middle-class refinement in antebellum America, and his work on Anglo-American sacred music includes essays in the recent Oxford Encyclopedia of the Bible and the Art.

He has an undergraduate degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, is ABD in musicology at Case Western Reserve University, and is pursuing a PhD in the History of American Civilization at the University of Delaware. He’s held research fellowships at the American Antiquarian Society, Library of Congress, University of Michigan, Historic Deerfield, Trinity College, and Massachusetts and New Hampshire Historical Societies.

Brenton lives in Wilmington with a collection of 19th-century American and European keyboard instruments and is a frequent guest-teacher in high school classrooms.

Leigh Rifenburg


Leigh began working with special collections as an intern and research fellow at the Maryland State Archives and the National Museum of American History and never looked back. She holds an undergraduate degree in History from Washington College and an M.L.I.S. from Drexel University, and her interest in making history discoverable and relatable informs her work in libraries and museums. Leigh spent nine years at the University of Delaware Library before joining the Delaware Historical Society in 2015. As Chief Curator, she oversees exhibit development, library user services, and the care and management of more than three million objects and archival collections in the DHS Research Library and the Delaware History Museum.

She’s active in the American Library Association as a member of the Committee on Professional Ethics, the Intellectual Freedom Roundtable, and the Library Leadership and Management Association. Her other professional interests include collections assessment and library space management and design.

Leigh is an avid traveler and lives in Elkton, Maryland, with her husband, two dogs, and far too many early 20th-century cookbooks.


Jennifer Potts

Jennifer is the Curator of Objects for the Delaware Historical Society and has been working with the Society’s artifact collection since 2007.  Originally from the UK, she holds an MA in Art History and a graduate Certificate of Museum Studies from Harvard and has held collections and historic interpretation positions in various museums in Massachusetts before coming to Delaware.

When not contemplating the twists and turns of an object’s past life, she enjoys reading, distance running and outdoor pursuits, and browsing in antique shops, flea markets, and library book sales.

Ed Richi

Ed Richi is a graduate of the University of Delaware, where he studied art, world history, and philosophy. He has served the Mid-Atlantic cultural community for 24 years as a research specialist, curator, collection manager, preservationist, and mural painter for the Delaware Historical Society.

Bill Robinson

Bill is the Preservation Librarian at the Delaware Historical Society, where he’s responsible for the long-term protection and stewardship of research library collections and facilities.

He received his MA in American History from Fordham University and his MLIS from Drexel University, concentrating on digital libraries. He has contributed to digitization and description projects at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Villanova University, and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and was a reference and instruction librarian at Alvernia University.

Bill lives in Philadelphia and enjoys writing and recording songs in his spare time.