Your Destination Guide to Philadelphia

Destination Guide Philadelphia - Your Destination Guide to Philadelphia, PA

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Historic Attractions

Historic Attractions
Historic Attractions

© Michael Righi

As the home of democracy, Philadelphia is the center of American history and offers unique opportunities to explore the many events and achievements that marked the birth of the nation. The "most historic mile" where the Independence National Historical Mall is located is the place of the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the writing of the Constitution, but that's not all that Philadelphia offers to history. Read on.

Philadelphia | Historic Attractions

2nd Bank
  • 2nd Bank
  • The Second Bank of the United States was established in 1817, six years after the First Bank lost its charter.
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30th Street Station
  • 30th Street Station
  • Accessible from downtown Philadelphia only by bridge, 30th Street Station is simultaneously an island unto its own and the city's primary connection to the outside world. Bound by Center City and University City, the station is one of the busiest in the country.
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Battleship New Jersey
  • Battleship New Jersey
  • Floating majestically on the Camden waterfront, the USS New Jersey, one of the U.S. Navy's most celebrated battleships, overlooks the stunning Philadelphia skyline. This historic ship was built at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard and launched on December 7, 1942.
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Ben Franklin Bridge
  • Ben Franklin Bridge
  • This massive blue suspension bridge crosses the Delaware River -- carrying six lanes of traffic -- and connects Philadelphia I-676 with US Route 30 in Camden NJ.
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Betsy Ross House
  • Betsy Ross House
  • Common knowledge among schoolchildren is that Betsy Ross likely sewed the first American flag, but less commonly known is her poignant and powerful life story and the origins behind the flag itself. The Betsy Ross House was built in 1740 and was the home, of course, to the iconic Betsy Ross.
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Brandywine Battlefield Park
  • Brandywine Battlefield Park
  • On September 11, 1777, the foggy, rolling hills of Chadds Ford in Pennsylvania hosted the Battle of Brandywine, one of the largest and most significant battles of the Revolutionary War, resulting in the forced retreat of the American army.
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Carpenter's Hall
  • Carpenter's Hall
  • Visitors will get a taste of America's rebellious spirit and revolutionary sensibility at Philly's Carpenter's Hall.
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City Hall
  • City Hall
  • The Philadelphia City Hall, although built in 1871, had its origins in William Penn's founding of the city in 1682.
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Eastern State Penitentiary
  • Eastern State Penitentiary
  • See what life was like behind the castle-like walls at Eastern State Penitentiary, open since 1994 to the public. Hailed as America's most historically significant prison, construction began in 1822, and the penitentiary opened in 1829, remaining active until 1971.
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Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site
  • Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site
  • Edgar Allan Poe, the American writer of mystery and macabre, called Philadelphia home from 1837 to 1844. This historical site is the only residence that remains of the several Poe lived in during the time he spent writing stories and literary criticism in the city.
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Grumblethorpe
  • Grumblethorpe
  • Grumblethorpe, also known as "John Wister's Big House" because of its numerous stories, was originally constructed as a summer home by wine importer and merchant John Wister in 1744.
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Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site
Independence Hall
  • Independence Hall
  • Philadelphia is steeped in revolutionary history, and no site in the city is more visited by patriots interested in America's birth than the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall.
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Independence National Historic Mall
  • Independence National Historic Mall
  • The home of two of the country's most revered symbols of freedom, the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, the Independence National Historical Mall is "the most historic mile" in United States.
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Liberty Bell
  • Liberty Bell
  • The Liberty Bell personifies the freedoms guaranteed by the nation's Constitution, although it was commissioned and created several years before that august document was penned.
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Masonic Temple
  • Masonic Temple
  • The Masonic Temple's imposing cathedral-like facade stands as a monument to human achievement and to the history of the Masons, one of the largest fraternities in the world.
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Memorial Hall
  • Memorial Hall
  • Memorial Hall is surrounded by Fairmount Park, where you can take a stroll through acres of well-manicured parkland and view the Beaux-Arts exterior of the Hall from afar on a sun-drenched summer afternoon.
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National Constitution Center
  • National Constitution Center
  • The Constitution represents one of the most exquisite examples of Enlightenment thinking, and its power is also due in part to its brevity. At only four pages, the U.S. Constitution is among the most influential and important documents in the history of the world.
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Rocky Statue
  • Rocky Statue
  • Striking a victorious pose near the sprawling intersection of Pennsylvania and Fairmont Avenue in front of the Philadelphia Art Museum, the eight-foot, 2000-lb bronze boxer stands guard at the base of the famed 72 steps.
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U.S. Mint
  • U.S. Mint
  • The U.S. Mint, in its fourth incarnation since its inception after the passage of the Coinage Act of 1792, produces from 11 to 20 million coins annually and holds the nation's $100 billion worth...
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