By Lauren Lipton

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A group of dedicated volunteers keeps one of Philadelphia’s brightest jewels shining.  It’s the Laurel Hill Mansion, in Fairmount Park.

“We found that the Fairmount Park Commission was advertising for organizations to adopt a house.  And we selected Laurel Hill Mansion,” says Alma Jacobs, president of the Women for Greater Philadelphia.

She says the group was initially formed in 1976 to assist with the Bicentennial celebration.

“Our mission is to improve the cultural image of the Greater Philadelphia area, as well as to maintain Laurel Hill Mansion.”

jacobs alma laurel hill mans lipton Positively Philadelphia:  Built By A Woman, Now Preserved By Women

(Alma Jacobs, inside Laurel Hill Mansion. Credit: Lauren Lipton)


And this has been no easy task.

“At the very beginning there was ample funding.  Currently, it is now our responsibility for the major maintenance of this house,” Jacobs says.

They would love to have you visit the Laurel Hill Mansion.

“Some of our premiere activities during the summer months are the ‘Concerts by Candlelight,’ ” she notes.

And this house is unusual.

“The house is a fascinating house because it was built in 1767, and that was very unusual at that time to be built by a woman.”

Hear or download Lauren Lipton’s full interview with Alma Jacobs in this CBS Philly podcast (runs 7:04)…

For more on the woman who built the house, the women who keep it going, and how you can help, go to

And that’s “Positively Philadelphia!”

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