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Top Historical Spots In Philadelphia

June 18, 2012 6:00 AM

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Independence Hall File Photo (Credit: John McDevitt)

Independence Hall File Photo (Credit: John McDevitt)

Philadelphia is more than just the City of Brotherly Love, it’s the birthplace of our nation. Not only was the Declaration of Independence signed here, but the U.S. Constitution was drafted here as well. Because of the centrality of Philadelphia in the formation of our Republic, the city is overflowing with places of historical significance. However, if you only have a day or two to take in the sites, these five stops need to be on your itinerary.
libertybell Top Historical Spots In Philadelphia

(credit: Thinkstock)

The Liberty Bell Center
526 Market St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 965-2305
nps.gov

The Liberty Bell’s new home in The Liberty Bell Center is nearly as moving and dramatic as the bell itself. The Center features enhanced historic documents and images to educate visitors about the facts and myths surrounding the bell. Moreover, x-rays give an interior view of the bell’s crack and inner workings. The Liberty Bell’s image has become an important symbol of our country, so seeing it live and in person is an experience that cannot be missed.

independence hall Top Historical Spots In Philadelphia

(credit: John McDevitt)

Independence Hall
520 Chestnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 965-2305
nps.gov

Independence Hall is the building where 56 courageous men gathered to defy King George and sign the “Declaration of Independence.” Slightly over 10 years later, representatives from 12 states gathered here to shape the “U.S. Constitution,” finally crafting a blueprint for a workable republic. Here you can see George Washington’s “rising sun” chair in the Assembly Room as well as the original inkstand used to sign the “Declaration of Independence.” If that isn’t enough, you can also take a peek at an original draft of the “U.S. Constitution.” All of these sights at no cost? You can’t find a better deal than that.

Related: Best Museums For Kids In Philadelphia

betsyrosshouse Top Historical Spots In Philadelphia

(credit: Betsy Ross House/Facebook)

The Betsy Ross House
239 Arch St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 629-4026
historicphiladelphia.org

While historians still debate whether Betsy Ross really did design the first American flag, her home is still one of Philadelphia’s most popular attractions. You can see her workroom, two bedrooms and kitchen. This is great place to stop, look around and grab a hot dog in the courtyard that overlooks the spot where Betsy Ross is buried, beneath the beautiful elm and sycamore trees that shade the courtyard.

constitutioncenter Top Historical Spots In Philadelphia

(File Photo)

The National Constitution Center
525 Arch St
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 409-6700
constitutioncenter.org

The 160,000-square-foot National Constitution Center describes and explains this most important American document through interactive displays, live-action plays and artifacts. For someone who has been to law school or studied the “U.S. Constitution,” the exhibits are a bit basic, but for your average American, The National Constitution Center provides a great overview of the four-page document that serves as the basis for our Representative government.

elfreth Top Historical Spots In Philadelphia

(credit: elfrethsalley.org)

Elfreth’s Alley Museum
126 Elfreth’s Alley
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 574-0560
www.elfrethsalley.org

Elfreth’s Alley is the nation’s oldest continuously-inhabited street, and The Elfreth’s Alley Museum tells several unique stories about life in early Philadelphia. Only two of the houses on Elfreth’s Alley are open to the public, although the residents of the alley open some of their homes every year as part of the Fete Day and Deck the Alley celebrations. The site is incredibly picturesque and the close quarters make you feel like you really are in Revolutionary Philadelphia.

Related: Philadelphia Museums That Even Guys Will Like

Katherine Ernst is a full-time novelist and freelance writer in Montgomery County. Follow her activity on her blog at katherineernstwrites.com. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

 

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