Monthly Archives: October 2011

Philadelphia’s Scariest Halloween Is Yet To Come

Eastern State Penitentiary, passage connecting cellblock 4 and the central hub, before stabilization, July 22, 2002. Photograph by Dick Gouldey. It used to be Halloween was for kids: all fun and screams. Now it’s into the serious stuff of big business. Halloween’s about the bottom line. And at historic sites, it’s also about another line, […]
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Schuykill River Floods, March 1902

Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Station During Flood – Flooded Train Shed. With the recent record levels of rainfall in Philadelphia, images such as these two photos have unfortunately become a familiar sight in our area. Though most Philadelphians do not remember another time when there seemed to be so much water everywhere, the city is […]
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Short Shrift for the Long Room at Independence Hall

The Long Room, Second Floor at Independence Hall, January 8, 1924. Warren A. McCullough, Photographer. Charles Willson Peale knew an opportunity when he saw it. Two centuries later, what do we see? In 1802, the 100-foot “Long Room” at the State House (aka Independence Hall) became available when the Pennsylvania’s legislature left for Lancaster. The […]
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Sensibility and Stuff: Collecting Photographs in a Purgatory of Zeros and Ones

In front of the Savoy Theatre, Market Street, west of 12th Street, photograph by Wenzel J. Hess, December 7, 1935. PhillyHistory.org allows registered visitors to tag and “collect” photographs and maps. In this essay, I consider the somewhat surreal notion of browsing online images and building a collection of “favorites.” Meandering alone in the stacks […]
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Ground Zero for Philadelphia Beer

The survival of the Bergdoll Brewery at 29th near Parrish in Brewerytown is interesting, but what remains from Philly beer’s earliest years? Philadelphia’s been a beer town for a long time, long enough to have a destination equal to the story. We’re thirsty here for beer history, but there’s no must-see site. When we say […]
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