Friday, May 8, 2009

Fun in Philadelphia!

The last couple of weeks have been pretty busy. Ken and I went on a 8 day trip where we flew into Philadelphia and then spent a lot of time in DC and got home on Sunday night. We didn't fly into Philadelphia until noon on Saturday and we only had that day to be there so we had to look around fast! Not long before we went I had read the book "Found Fathers, Uncommon Heroes" by Steven W. Allen. I was so glad I had. It is a very neat, completely factual but very interesting book about the beginning of our nation. He especially focuses on Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, John Adams, Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison with a chapter devoted to each of them. He has tons of quotes which I found fascinating. The beginning of our nation was truly set in Philadelphia and so when we went there I was able to think as we went to each place "so this is where John Adams stood and said this" and so on. It made my visit to the city much more meaningful.

There was also a Visitor's center there where they had a couple of short films about the revolutionary days which helped us understand and remember things better too. Ken and I both found the visit to be very moving.

We first saw the liberty bell. After reading about it and seeing pictures of it for so long that was quite fun.
Here are Ken and I in front of Independence Hall (though it is technically the Pennsylvania state house).

This is the Carpenters Hall where the founding fathers first met in 1774 to right up the "Declaration of Rights and Grievances" to give to King George the 3rd.
This is Independence Hall (the opposite side of the picture with Ken and I in it), Where they signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776.

This is the room where the "Declaration of Independence" was debated, figured out and signed. The chair at the front is the originally chair as is some of the other furniture. This room was also where there was much debate about the Constitution.

This is Congress Hall where the our nations Representatives and Senators first met. This room is where the House sat. It is also the place that John Adams was sworn in as our 2nd president. This was a pretty amazing event because the people had never before seen power transfer peacefully from one man to another. This is the upstairs where the Senators met. The furniture here is original.
We also had fun walking around and we saw Ben Franklin's rental building that still has an old fashioned (but working) post office in it, a printing shop and a book store.
We also saw the house that is thought to be Betsy Ross's house. It is at least the house where her picture was painted.
We walked down "Elfreth's Alley" the oldest residential street in our nation I believe. The houses are originals from the 1700's. The alley is tiny, no cars can go down it and the houses are tiny too. They are squished together with often no space between them and sometimes about an 18-24 inch walkway to the back courtyard. Most of the homes there as still residential homes.
We also enjoyed all of the beautiful Spring flowers! They were everywhere!
We also walked by Christ's Church which is where Ben Franklin and Betsy Ross and others attended. It is still used for church services today.
Our time in Philadelphia was short but I think we will remember it for a long, long time!

1 comment:

Dear Abbi said...

Ooooh, you were in my "neck of the woods!!" How exciting! Philadelphia really is so full of American history...I'm so glad that the kids are going to get to see so much firsthand! I'm glad you had a nice visit!


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