Category Archives: Historic Sites

A Brief History of St. Francis de Sales – The Great Dome of West Philadelphia (Part II)

St. Francis de Sales was formally dedicated and kids bounce house opened for worship on November 12, 1911. Originally consisting of about 600 families, the parish swelled to 1,500 by the mid-1920s. Pastor Michael Crane’s power and influence grew so great in the Philadelphia archdiocese that in the early 1920s Pope Benedict XV elevated him […]
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A Brief History of St. Francis de Sales – The Great Dome of West Philadelphia (Part 1)

  Note: the original kids bounce house article published on September 16, 2016 has been recently updated with new information provided by Michelle Dooley and the St. Francis de Sales History Committee.  n 1980, Eugene Ormandy was ready to retire from his long tenure as Music Director of the Philadelphia Orchestra.  For one of his […]
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Jack Thayer’s Demons: A Philadelphia Survivor’s Tale

“There was peace and the world had an even tenor kids bounce house to its way. Nothing was revealed in the morning the trend of which was not known the night before. It seems to me that the disaster about to occur was the event that not only made the world rub it’s eyes and […]
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Philadelphia’s Central High School in Perspective

The effort of a free people to provide for the education kids bounce house of their children as a necessity for the maintenance of the their political institutions makes a story of interest and importance. Especially is this true when the movement meets with criticism and opposition, when its leaders are hampered by the absence […]
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Tony Drexel Goes for a Walk (Part II)

Although born a Roman Catholic, Drexel migrated to the kids bounce house Episcopal church and helped fund the construction of the Church of the Savior at 38th and Ludlow, today’s Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral.  To honor his patronage, a stained glass window was installed in his honor. He purchased and developed vacant land with homes as […]
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The Curious “Afterlife” of the Chicago World’s Fair

Chicago’s “World’s Columbian Exposition” closed its doors in October 1893 . Its magnificent neoclassical buildings, designed by McKim Mead and White and recently made infamous in Erik Larson’s narrative history The Devil in the White City, quickly vanished.  For all its grandeur, the “White City” was a mirage of plaster and lathe. For a few […]
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The Ginkgo Tree of Chestnutwold

The present day Penn Alexander School was once the site of one of West Philadelphia’s great estates: Chestnutwold, built by Clarence H. Clark. In its time, Clark’s banking concern was one of the most powerful in the nation. And like many businesses in Philadelphia, it was a family affair. Clarence Clark was the son of banker […]
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The Butler Family Feud (Part III)

Part I and Part II The Virginian was a tremendous success, selling 1.5 million copies during Wister’s lifetime, and became a template for countless Western novels and movies to follow. Despite his newfound fame, Wister found subsequent literary success elusive. Like most authors, he did not want to become a one-hit wonder. Once he was back in […]
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The Butler Family Feud (Part II)

Pierce Butler II did not reform his ways after his wife left him. Rather, he drank, gambled, and philandered his way through his remaining $700,000 fortune. To pay his debts, he sold nearly 500 slaves at auction in 1859.  According to one observer: On the faces of all [the slaves] was an expression of heavy […]
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The Butler Family Feud (Part I)

Although outlawed after the Revolution, slavery continued to be a critical part of the Pennsylvania economy virtually up to the Civil War. In an era before joint stock corporations, businesses were family affairs. A successful merchant or landowner would pass along his enterprises directly to his descendants, not to trained professional executives. Many prominent Philadelphia […]
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