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Featured Photographs
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Mayor's Office Decorated for New Years - 1913
City Hall

Proposed Site of New City Hall Annex - 1924
Juniper and Filbert Streets

Featured Blog Entry
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Photography: A Mini History
by Heather Newlin

1839 was an important year in the history of record-keeping. It was in this year that the first practical form of photography, the Daguerreotype, was invented. Without this invention almost 170 years ago, would not have been possible. Most of the images on this website come from one of three photographic types: the negative, the print, and the digital photograph. The majority of these, however, come from the incredibly large collection of negatives in the city’s possession...... read more.

South Side of Callowhill at 13th Street - 1894
N. 13th and Callowhill

NE Corner of Cuthbert and Broad - 1868
Cuthbert and Broad



National History Day
March 28-29, 2007

This year again, thousands of middle and high school students and teachers across the U.S. participate in National History Day. As a partner of National History Day, the Department of Records has developed a website to serve as a clearinghouse for information and resources for students and teachers alike. To assist them with their essays, documentaries, exhibits and performance related research, the website offers students a list of Philadelphia web-based resources as well as suggested essay topics on this year's theme, "Triumph and Tragedy in History."

The list of topics was inspired by the plethora of records and documents held at the City Archives, and is illustrated by historic photos, also located at the Archives. For more information visit:

PhillyHistory Makes it to the Big Screen
Ritz Theatres Pre-Film Slideshow

Many thanks to all the fans for the many wonderful comments we have received for our pre-film slide show currently displayed at many local Ritz cinemas. These images can be yours today!! Below is our selection of some of the most moving photographs featured in the slide show. Click on the following links to see these images again or to purchase them.

We appreciate your feedback. Contact Rachel (

Your Neighborhood in Photographs
The Northeast

The Frankford Elevated - 1918
Frankford Avenue and Bustleton Avenue

Corner Store - 1949
Rhawn and Castor Streets


As our digital collection of photographs grows bigger so does the caché of stories we receive from readers who have stumbled across images that elicit memories of the past. Recently one of our readers, Ruth Black, wrote in with a beautiful account of her experience growing up in the Northeast (Holmesburg). Several images she had found on reminded her of her walks to school, swimming in Pennypack Creek and rollerskating on Frankford Avenue. A recent article in the NorthEast Times references Ruth’s story and can be found by visiting the NorthEast Times Newspaper website

We love hearing your stories about images you find on Please let us know about them by writing to


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