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The paths to understanding American history all converge in Philadelphia and its historic countryside. Even before William Penn founded the city and built his estate in Bucks County, Native Americans and Swedish colonists recognized the region as an attractive place for trade and settlement.

Here Americans defended their liberty, achieved technological success, and forged the ideals of the American Dream. Today’s visitor can enjoy the legacy from more than three centuries of political, economic, social, and cultural achievements — all within the Philadelphia area.

Featured Listings

  • Cliveden

    A grand mansion with a fascinating — and bloody — history

    One of the most lavish mansions of its era, Cliveden is stocked with furniture and artifacts designed to evoke Colonial times.

    Now a six-acre oasis in the middle of a bustling Philadelphia neighborhood, Cliveden was an estate in the suburb of Germantown built just before the Revolutionary War by the Chew family. One of the most lavish mansions of its era, Cliveden is stocked with furniture and artifacts designed to evoke Colonial times.

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  • The Johnson House
    Historic Site, Inc.

    A vital stop on the Underground Railroad

    A reenactment at the Johnson House in Germantown.

    It’s easy to imagine 19th-century freedom fighters Harriet Tubman and William Still meeting at this Quaker home in Germantown, owned by four generations of the abolitionist Johnson family.

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  • Wyck

    The Quaker way of life preserved for 300 years

    Duck into the partially hidden garden along busy Germantown Avenue for a 2.5-acre oasis of color and scent at the historic Wyck House and gardens.

    Duck into the partially hidden garden along busy Germantown Avenue for a 2.5-acre oasis of color and scent at the historic Wyck House and gardens. You’ll be whisked back to the Colonial and Victorian eras as you walk through the rose garden, vegetable garden, lawns and other plantings, many of which are direct descendents of the original 19th-century plantings.

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  • Bastille Day Festival
    at Eastern State Penitentiary

    Wigs are welcome at this day-long reenactment of the French Revolution

    Eastern State Penitentiary

    Grab a pitchfork and storm the walls! Whether you’re a revolutionary or a royalist, there’s something for you in this celebration of all things French at Bastille Day at the Eastern State Penitentiary.

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  • Historic RittenhouseTown

    The site of the first paper mill in British North America

    Historic RittenhouseTown, the birthplace of paper in North America, is now a preserved village on idyllic Lincoln Drive in beautiful Fairmount Park.

    The birthplace of paper in North America, Historic RittenhouseTown is now a preserved village on idyllic Lincoln Drive in beautiful Fairmount Park.

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  • Juneteenth Festival

    An annual all-day festival celebrating the end of slavery

    Germantown is an apt place to celebrate the end of slavery.

    Celebrate the end of slavery with free exhibitions, performances, vendors, discussions, family-friendly events and activities in Germantown.

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  • Stenton

    William Penn’s powerful agent-secretary, James Logan, made Stenton his country seat

    Stenton was one of the grandest houses of its time.

    Ben Franklin thought it was worth the trip to Germantown’s Stenton, one of the grandest houses of its time.

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  • Your Philadelphia Tour

    Design your own historical and cultural excursion in the City of Brotherly Love

    Your Philadelphia Tour allows tour-goers to create their own custom guided tour.

    Your Philadelphia Tour seeks to offer a different way to see and learn about the City of Brotherly Love: by putting the tour-goers in charge.

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  • The Philadelphia History Museum at the Atwater Kent

    New and improved history near Independence Hall

    City Stories Gallery at the Philadelphia History Museum.

    History renews itself this fall at the reopened and renovated Philadelphia History Museum. The historic 1826 building, located just around the corner from Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, has been an exciting gateway into Philadelphia History for nearly 70 years.

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  • Independence Seaport Museum

    An interactive museum exploring Philadelphia’s maritime heritage

    Sailing on the river outside the Independence Seaport Museum.

    With historic vessels to board, an underwater ROV to maneuver and a mock cannon to fire, Philadelphia’s maritime museum conveys what the Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers have meant to the city over the years.

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