The Betsy Ross House
The birthplace of the American flag
Did she or didn’t she? Ask Betsy Ross about her role in making the first American flag yourself when you visit the iconic home of America’s most famous flag maker.
The home of the nation’s famous seamstress is a must-see historic attraction for visitors and locals alike. Wander through the tiny rooms and tight staircases of the 1740 home that Betsy rented as she made her living as an upholsterer.
During your tour, you can talk to Betsy herself and discover why she took on the potentially treasonous task when George Washington came knocking and the time-saving trick she shared with the great general.
On the self-guided tour, you can explore her upholstery shop, her parlor where she received the Flag Committee, the bedroom where she sewed the first flag and her basement where she made musket cartridges for the Continental Army. Throughout the home, you’ll see Ross family treasures including her family bible, snuff box, and more.
Changing exhibits in the gallery offer unique peeks into rarely seen corners of Colonial life.
Audio guides are also available, including a special version just for kids, where Betsy’s voice shares more insight on life among the working class in 18th century Philadelphia.
The raging war for Independence created many widows. Betsy Griscom Ross Ashburn Claypool ultimately lost three husbands, but unlike many widows who were left without resources, her skills as a seamstress enabled her to support herself and her seven children. She operated her business well past the age of 70 and finally died at the age of 84.
Betsy Ross is buried beneath the giant elm, magnolia and sycamore trees that shade the courtyard of her home in Historic Philadelphia.
Museum In The Making
Dates: Until January 2016
The Betsy Ross House recently unveiled its latest exhibition, A Museum in the Making: The American Flag House & Betsy Ross Memorial Association, 1898 – 1941, an exhibition about the founding of the Betsy Ross House.
Learn about the historic Old City sight’s transformation from a little-known tavern to an established museum thanks to the help of the newly established American Flag House & Betsy Ross Memorial Association in 1898.
The Betsy Ross House is the only site in the country that interprets a working 18th century upholstery shop.
The kids will love meeting Betsy and having her show them how to cut a five point star with just one snip of the scissors. Interactive exhibits let young visitors try their hands at colonial cookery and more.
During the summer months, Once Upon A Nation Storytellers entertain in the courtyard during the day and on First Friday nights you can enjoy an outdoor movie on under the stars.
Tickets & Hours
Admission is $5 for adults and $4 for children, plus $2 each for the optional audio tour.
Open Daily, April-November
Open Tuesday-Sunday from October-March
Open All Monday Holidays
In the neighborhood
225 S. 8th Street Philadelphia, PA 19106
- Sheraton Philadelphia Society Hill Hotel
- Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District
- Best Western Independence Park Hotel
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at Penn’s Landing
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21 S. 5th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
- The Irish Memorial
- Dream Garden
- Philadelphia Orchestra
Free Neighborhood Concert Series
- Declaration (Graff) House
- The Liberty Bell Center
- Independence After Hours
- Center for Advanced Judaic Studies
- Mikveh Israel Congregation and Cemetery
- Benjamin Franklin Museum
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