Philadelphia and the Countryside - Press Room

Items Tagged: History

Oct 6 2016

An Essential Guide To Philadelphia For LGBT Visitors

Must-Dos Include Historic Sites, Popular Neighborhoods, Top Restaurants & Buzzed-About Bars

Philadelphia, the United States’ birthplace, is proud of the roles it has played—and plays still—in the founding, furtherance and celebration of the LGBT civil rights movement. The City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection hosted the country’s first major demonstration for LGBT rights, the Annual Reminders, in 1965. Today, visitors to Philly can easily explore sites where LGBT history was made and where queer life continues to thrive.

To see and do it all, visitors need to spend at least a couple of nights, and that’s made easy with the Visit Philly Overnight Hotel Package®, offering free parking

Jul 15 2016

Philadelphia's Vast Collection Of Historical Artifacts Wins Over Political Junkies

Ephemera Includes Cleveland’s Tumor & Ben Franklin’s “Rising Sun” Chair

Before and during the festive nominating sessions, motivating speeches and nighttime celebrations, delegates, party operatives, campaign staffers and volunteers for the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Philadelphia, July 25-28, can discover items that document the history of politics and government in this country. As the birthplace of the nation and the country’s first and only World Heritage City, Philadelphia is home to institutions that work political artifacts into their missions and others that are planning special exhibitions especially for this occasion.

Campaign Memorabilia:

  • Inspired by FanFest, PoliticalFest brings political entertainment to the people—right in the birthplace of American democracy.
Jul 8 2016

16 Things To Know: African-American Philadelphia

From Colonial Through Modern Days In The City Of Brotherly Love & Sisterly Affection

Strength In Numbers:

  1. The 2010 U.S. Census reported 661,839—that’s 43.37%—of Philadelphians are African-American, the city’s second largest ethnic demographic. More recent estimates show this population has increased by approximately 1% in the past six years.
  2. The largest concentration—82%—of African-American Philadelphians live in North Philadelphia west of Germantown Avenue, Point Breeze in South Philadelphia, West Philadelphia and in parts of Southwest Philadelphia.
  3. Important African-American business corridors include 52nd Street between Walnut and
    Arch Streets and Baltimore Avenue between 40th and 52nd Streets, both in West Philadelphia; and Stenton Avenue between Broad Street and Walnut Lane and Ogontz
Jul 8 2016

11 Things To Know: Latino Philadephia

Latino Culture & Population In The City Of Brotherly Love & Sisterly Affection

Strength In Numbers:

  1. The 2010 U.S. Census reported 187,611—that’s 12.3%—of Philadelphians are Latino.
  • 121,643 are Puerto Rican or of Puerto Rican descent.
  • 15,531 are Mexican or of Mexican descent.
  • 3,930 are Cuban or of Cuban descent.
  • 46,507 are of other Hispanic descent.
  1. The hub of Latino culture and life in Philadelphia, El Centro de Oro, centered at 5th Street and Lehigh Avenues in the city’s Fairhill section of North Philadelphia, is home to residents descending from almost every Latin American country, a strong concentration of Puerto Rican families, along with non-profit organizations and many Latino-owned businesses.
  2. Each year,
Jul 5 2016

A First-Timer's Guide To Philadelphia

Iconic Sites & Bites Give Visitors An Experience That’s Distinctly Philly

While Philadelphia offers a variety of authentic and top-notch attractions, exploring this vibrant city takes some planning—especially for first-time visitors. With so much to see, do and taste, it’s challenging for a novice to know where to begin in the country’s first World Heritage City. From the historic Liberty Bell to the deliciously indulgent cheesesteak, here’s a look at Philly 101:

Historical Hotspots:

  • Independence Hall – While historical attractions abound in Philly, Independence Hall has particular significance to the development of the nation. In this building in 1776, the Founding Fathers came together to sign the Declaration of Independence.
Jun 22 2016

Philly 101: The How-Tos For Navigating Philadelphia

Primer On The City’s Layout, Accents & Very Particular Way To Drink At Dinner

Every year, 41 million travelers get to know Philadelphia’s layout, customs, food and dialect during their visits. First-timers may wonder: What’s the best way to get around (walk); why do so many restaurants refuse to serve alcohol (BYOBs); where are all the bagels (pretzels for breakfast); is that Ben Franklin on the top of that building (no); and is wooder ice really that big of a deal (yes)?

The reasons to visit the country’s first World Heritage City have been well-covered in The New York Times, Bon Appétit, Travel + Leisure and Rolling Stone—and that’s just the recent

Jun 16 2016

Fact Sheet: 31 Top Philadelphia Region Attractions

* Note: Most attractions were listed in the Philadelphia Business Journal Book of Lists 2015. Those that were not are marked with an asterisk.

Historical Sites & Attractions:

  1. The African American Museum in Philadelphia*, founded in 1976, is the first institution built by a major U.S. city to preserve, interpret and exhibit the heritage and culture of African-Americans. The museum takes a fresh and bold look at the stories of African-Americans and their role in the founding of the nation through the core exhibit Audacious Freedom. Other exhibits and programs explore the history, stories and cultures of those of African
May 25 2016

Philadelphia Launches Campaign To Promote Its Original City

Marketing Effort Calls For People To See & Do More In Area Now Dubbed Historic Philadelphia

On Memorial Day weekend 2016, Philadelphia will kick off its busy summer tourism season by launching a new campaign that redefines and renames the city’s prized historic district, to be called Historic Philadelphia. The marketing effort touts the area’s powerful place in the country’s founding while also showcasing the restaurants, bars, shops, galleries and attractions that make it appealing to 21st-century residents and visitors, day into night. Historic Philadelphia encompasses the Delaware River waterfront, Old City, Society Hill and Independence National Historical Park, with the official boundaries running from the river to 7th Street and from Vine

May 24 2016

Fact Sheet: Historic Philadelphia Campaign

CAMPAIGN NAME: Historic Philadelphia


  • Increase visitation in and around Historic Philadelphia
  • Increase engagement among those who visit the area, so they will stay overnight, do more and spend more

DURATION: May 2016 through 2017


The campaign redefines and renames Historic Philadelphia, an area that runs from the Delaware River to 7th Street and from Vine to Lombard Streets—Philadelphia’s original city. It encompasses the following areas:

  • Delaware River waterfront
  • Old City
  • Society Hill
  • Independence National Historical Park

BUDGET: $2 million


  • H. F. (Gerry) Lenfest
  • Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Department of Community and Economic Development


May 23 2016

Fact Sheet: Historic Philadelphia Trail

The birthplace of the nation is rich in history—and plenty of it. This Historic Philadelphia Trail guides visitors to 24 essential sites in the area, which spans from the Delaware River to 7th Street and from Vine to Lombard Streets. This is the original city. It boasts serious historical cred, but it’s also home to buzzed-about restaurants and beer gardens, owner-operated boutiques and pushing-the boundaries art galleries.

Here is the 24-stop essential guide, available at

  1. Visitors can head to the Independence Visitor Center to pick up their timed tickets to Independence Hall and get expert Philly tips.
May 22 2016

New Reasons To Visit Historic Philadelphia This Summer

Philadelphia’s Oldest Neighborhood Features New Summer Exhibitions, Activities & Events

Philadelphia’s historic district—now called Historic Philadelphia—simmers with summer excitement as the city’s oldest neighborhood debuts new activities and exhibitions. Visitors launch their very own presidential campaigns in Headed to the White House at the National Constitution Center, and the Independence Seaport Museum mischievously observes sailors’ lives from the 20th century through today. Along popular Penn’s Landing, outdoor hangouts Summerfest and Spruce Street Harbor Park promise more fun than ever, and Fourth of July bash Wawa Welcome America injects fresh components to a good old-fashioned block party.

A two-day Historic Philadelphia Pass makes the must-dos even easier—and more affordable. The pass,

May 21 2016

Scandal, Sex & The (Colonial) City In 18th-Century Philadelphia

Historic Philadelphia Sites Recount Founding Fathers' & Mothers’ Sinful Shenanigans

Philadelphia is the birthplace of the United States. It’s where the Declaration of Independence was written and where the U.S. Constitution was signed. But Historic Philadelphia has many more tales to tell. The 18th-century metropolis was a hotbed of extramarital affairs, excommunications, elopements and blowout bashes—all resulting in rampant gossip. A visit to Historic Philadelphia reveals it was 18th century America’s original Sin City.

Here are some true stories of prominent Colonial Philadelphians’ gasp-worthy goings-on—and a list of sites to revisit their oft-salacious private lives.

  • Historians debate whether Betsy Ross stitched the first flag, but there is
May 20 2016

Nighttime Is The Right Time To Return To Historic Philadelphia

Music, Dancing, Tours & More Add Modern Twists To The Original City After Dark

As day turns to dusk and museums and landmarks close for the night, Historic Philadelphia is just gearing up for a night of fun. Theaters, play places and ghost tours keep youngsters amused until pajama time, while beer gardens, dance clubs and live music venues entertain the over-21 crowd well into the wee hours.

Here’s how Historic Philadelphia buzzes with activity long after the clock strikes 5 p.m.:

Family Fun:
End-of-day play at Franklin Square includes an award-winning playground, eclectic carousel and 18-hole mini-golf course with scale versions of iconic Philadelphia landmarks (open until 9 or 10 p.m., depending

May 19 2016

Historic Philadelphia Timeline, 1681 To 1801


  • King Charles II grants William Penn the Charter of Pennsylvania, which includes an immense tract of land as settlement of a debt owed to Penn’s father, Admiral William Penn. The King names the colony Pennsylvania in honor of Admiral Penn. William Penn begins plans for his “holy experiment” and hopes it will be the “seed of a nation.” His Commonwealth will assure religious tolerance, fair trials, freedom of speech and enlightened laws.


  • William Penn leaves England, sets sail across the Atlantic and arrives in Philadelphia, his “City of Brotherly Love.” Find more information at the Philadelphia History Museum,
May 18 2016

Celebrate A Red, White And Blue July 4th In Philadelphia

Four Concerts, Three Fireworks Extravaganzas, Hamilton’s Leslie Odom, Jr. and More Bring the Razzle-Dazzle to Wawa Welcome America!

Birthdays deserve big celebrations—and nobody will celebrate America’s 240th better than Philadelphia, the city where it all began. June 27 through July 4, 2016, Wawa Welcome America! will rock the town with red, white and blue festivities that culminate in a four-day weekend of free concerts featuring Tony-nominated Leslie Odom, Jr. of Broadway’s monster hit Hamilton, Bryshere Gray, also known as Yazz, of TV’s blockbuster Empire and myriad more stars of all stripes. The eight-day celebration also includes three dazzling fireworks shows, the Historic Philadelphia Block Party, parades, patriotic ceremonies, not to mention chance encounters with our Founding Fathers

May 15 2016

Aspiring Citizens Get Study Help With New Americans Walking Tour

Candidates For Citizenship Can Boost Their Knowledge In The Places Where It All Happened

Prepping for the U.S. citizenship test can be a daunting venture, but Philadelphia’s self-guided New Americans Tour not only makes it easier, it makes it a whole lot more fun. With approximately half of the answers to the 100-question citizenship test study guide rooted in Philadelphia, the city is like a living study guide where aspiring citizens and others curious about U.S. history can visit the sites and attractions where so many key historic events took place. Most sites are located within the boundaries of the original city known as Historic Philadelphia and are easily accessible by foot. The tour

May 10 2016

Iconic Landmarks Recount Philadelphia's Political History

Independence Hall, Carpenter’s Hall & Other Locations Provide The Backdrop For The 2016 Democratic National Convention

When delegates gather in Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention in summer 2016, all eyes will be on the nation’s birthplace. Having hosted numerous political conventions, including the 2000 Republican gathering and the 1948 conventions for all three parties (Democratic, Republican and Progressive), Philadelphia is accustomed to being in the political spotlight. It was here where disgruntled colonists created a new form of government. Today, many of the places where those meetings, debates and activities took place still stand in Historic Philadelphia, an area that spans from the Delaware River Waterfront to 7th Street and from Vine to Lombard Streets.

Apr 25 2016

Fact Sheet: Family Fun In Philadelphia

Historical Sites & Attractions:

  • Wannabe sailors can visit the nation’s most decorated battleship, the Battleship New Jersey, and take tours of the ship, ride the 4-D flight simulator, climb into the onboard helicopter and sleep in the sailors’ bunks as part of its award-winning Overnight Encampment program. 62 Battleship Place, Camden, (856) 966-1652,
  • America’s most famous flag maker greets guests in her interactive 18th-century upholstery shop at the Betsy Ross House. Visitors learn about Betsy’s life and legend from the lady herself and Phillis the laundress, a historical re-enactor who portrays what life was like for
Apr 12 2016

African-American Story In Historic Philadelphia

America’s Most Historic Square Mile Tells A Rich Story About Free Blacks, Enslaved Africans And African-Americans

Historic Philadelphia, the site of the original city and often called America’s most historic square mile, reveals early chapters in the nation’s history, including the challenges, injustices, accomplishments and contributions of Africans and African-Americans.

The African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church, which was founded in Philadelphia, celebrates its 200th anniversary in 2016. Taking place July 3-5, bicentennial events include a major gospel concert; a social justice forum; a tribute to Sarah Allen, the church’s founding mother; and an ecumenical worship service. Then congregants participate in the A.M.E. general conference, July 6-13 in Philadelphia, complete with an unveiling of the Bishop

Mar 23 2016

A Tale Of Two Host Cities: Philadelphia And Cleveland Put On 2016 Political Conventions

While presidential candidates are going head-to-head in heated discourse, the great American cities of Philadelphia and Cleveland are pushing political banter aside to ready themselves for the national spotlight as they host the Democratic National Convention (July 25-28) and Republican National Convention (July 18-21), respectively. Cleveland’s last political convention was the 1936 RNC; that same year, Philadelphia welcomed the DNC. The cities will be part of history again in 2016.

Both destinations have a loyal fan base; residents love their respective city’s arts and culture, history, music and food, and visitors clamor over much of the same. Here’s a look