Betsy Ross House, Philadelphia
239 Arch St
Betsy Ross has become an American icon for the part she played in the birth of our nation, but there is a fascinating real woman behind the flag-sewing legend. Betsy Ross was a wife, a working mother and an entrepreneur who led a life filled with both triumph and tragedy.
Erected more than 250 years ago, the building currently known as The Betsy Ross House was home to not just Betsy, but to dozens of artisans and shopkeepers over the years before it was opened to the public as a museum in 1937.
Independence National Historical Park, Philadelphia
313 Walnut St.
Independence National Historical Park isn't just the Liberty Bell Center and Independence Hall. There are tons of other sites to see. Spanning more than 55 acres and 20 city blocks within the historic district of Old City, Philadelphia, the park preserves and interprets many of our country's most important resources associated with the establishment of the United States of America, including the First and Second Banks of the United States, Congress Hall and Old City Hall. Additionally, the park relates the story of Philadelphia's most famous citizen, Ben Franklin, in Franklin Court, where the master statesman’s home once stood.
National Constitution Center, Philadelphia
525 Arch St
The exhibit at this revolutionary new museum will take you through important events in our nation's history and through distinctive and interactive exhibits, show you the importance of the United States Constitution today in context with the document written 216 years ago. The tour starts with a multimedia production featuring a live actor, film and video projection in the Richard and Helen DeVos Exhibit Hall's Kimmel Theater. Here you will be introduced to the essence of the Constitution from 1787 to our current time. At the DeVos Hall's American Experience, you will find interactive family-centered exhibits that show the important role the Constitution has played throughout history. You can vote for your favorite Presidents of the past, take the seat of a Supreme Court Justice, take the Presidential Oath of Office, and honor service people who have fought for and defended our Constitution. You’ll also have the ability to take an active role as a citizen by e-mailing elected officials and watching constitutional issues unfold. But that's not all for you to enjoy - the National Constitution Center also features an extensive assortment of special events, lectures and programs for all audiences.
Liberty Bell, Philadelphia
500 Market St
The Liberty Bell Center is located on Market Street between 5th and 6th Streets. The building, open all year round, keeps hours that vary from season to season. The Liberty Bell Center provides video presentations and exhibits about the Liberty Bell, focusing on the origins of this icon of freedom and its modern day role as an international symbol of democracy. Recorded presentations about the history of the Liberty Bell are offered in a dozen languages for the convenience of foreign visitors. The Liberty Bell itself is on display in a beautiful glass chamber with Independence Hall in the background.
Old St. Mary's Church, Philadelphia
252 South 4th St
The marble pieta crafted by French sculptor Boucher at the back of Old St. Mary's Church and two stories of brilliant stained glass windows create a mood of quiet grandeur and elegance right in the heart of Old City Philadelphia. The interior, refurbished in 1979, retains reminders of its historic past, including a baptismal font from 1791, brass chandeliers from nearby Independence Hall, and Bishop Conwell's chair from the early 19th C.
Its cemetery includes the remains of Commodore Barry, better known as the "Father of the American Navy"; General Moylan, aid to President Washington; Thomas Fitzsimmons, a member of the Continental Congress who helped draft the United States Constitution; and Michael Bouvier, the great-great- grandfather of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. This historic church is open for visitors when there are no services (although there are no guided or self-guided tours.)
Independence Hall, Philadelphia
500 Chestnut St
Constructed between 1732 and 1756 as the State House of the Province of Pennsylvania, Independence Hall is considered a fine example of Georgian architecture. From 1775 to 1783 (except for the winter of 1777 - 1778 when Philadelphia was occupied by the British Army) the Hall was the meeting spot for the Second Continental Congress. It was in this most historic of Assembly Rooms that George Washington was appointed commander in chief of the Continental Army in 1775 and the Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4, 1776. It was also in this room that the design of the American flag was agreed upon in 1777, the Articles of Confederation were implemented in 1781, and the U. S. Constitution was drafted in 1787. Independence Hall has, inside and out, been restored whenever possible to its original late 18th century appearance. Most of the furnishings are period pieces. The "rising sun" chair used by George Washington as he presided over the Constitutional Convention is the original. Located on Chestnut Street between 5th and 6th Streets; the building is open year round, though hours vary by season. Visitors are admitted free of charge by tour only, with tours beginning in the East Wing. No reservations are accepted, and all tours are operated on a first come first serve basis. All visitors need a free timed ticket for the Independence Hall tours from March through December. Printed materials are available on request in 8 foreign languages (Chinese, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Spanish, Russian).
United States Mint, Philadelphia
151 N. Independence Mall East
The United States Mint in Philadelphia tours are free of charge and are self-guided. Reservations are not necessary. Visitors can see actual coin production, exhibits and video/audio stations which provide information about the United States Mint and its history, coinage and current programs. The tour takes about 45 minutes. The visitors' entrance is at the corner of Fifth and Arch Streets. Adults will be asked to provide government-issued photo ID for security purposes. The United States Mint is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9 am to 3 pm. The U.S. Mint is closed on Federal Holidays.
First Bank of the United States
120 S. 3rd St.
The First Bank of the United States—initially called just the Bank of the United States—was in operation from 1797-1811, on 3rd St. between Chestnut and Walnut streets. Samuel Blodgett, Jr., merchant, architect, writer, promoter, publisher, and "Superintendent of Buildings" for the new capital in Washington, DC, designed the building in 1794. At its completion in 1797, the bank was heralded as an architectural master piece. By today's standards the building remains a notable early example of Classical monumental design.