Declaration (Graff) House
Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence here
The all-important words that created a new nation were written by Thomas Jefferson at the home of Jacob Graff. Jr. Visitors can view first-floor exhibits and a short film regarding Jefferson’s endeavors at the home where he rented two second-floor rooms from Graff, a well-known bricklayer.
The recreated Georgian structure on the second floor features the parlor that Jefferson worked in, as well as his bedroom where it’s likely he was attended to by a slave who accompanied him from Virginia. Period furnishings, some recreated, can also be seen.
Originally built in 1775, the red-brick house at Seventh and Market streets was reconstructed in 1975. In June 1776, Jefferson traveled to Philadelphia to attend the second Continental Congress and joined in the call for the colonies to breakaway from Great Britain. He was chosen to write the Declaration’s timeless words. Jefferson completed the job in about three weeks.
Call for hours because they change seasonally
A conversation with the site’s ranger is quite helpful, providing excellent reference information. Books can be bought at the site.
There’s some material for youngsters, especially upstairs where period artifacts and memorabilia can be observed.
In the neighborhood
401 Chestnut Street Philadelphia, PA 19106
- Hilton Philadelphia
at Penn’s Landing
- Sheraton Philadelphia Society Hill Hotel
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- Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District
- Best Western Independence Park Hotel
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Museums & Attractions
21 S. 5th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
- The Liberty 360 3-D Show
at the PECO Theater
- The African American Museum in Philadelphia
- Museum at the Chemical Heritage Foundation
- Dolley Todd (Madison) House
- The Bishop White House
- Penn’s Landing
- National Liberty Museum
- 2015 Fringe Festival
- Christ Church Burial Ground
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