Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia

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Philadelphia boasts one of the oldest, largest and most diverse park systems in the United States. Yet the city’s parks receive scant attention in histories of landscape design and city planning. In Counting Trees: The Search for Fairmount Park, Elizabeth Milroy, author of The Grid and the River: Philadelphia’s Green Places, 1682-1876, will describe the development of Philadelphia’s urban parks in the two centuries after William Penn and Thomas Holme drew public squares on the seminal city plan.

This program is FREE but registration is required.

Elizabeth Milroy has contributed several essays to The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia, including a history of Philadelphia's public parks.

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 6-7:30 p.m.
Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

Philadelphia’s Chinatown, like many urban Chinatowns, began in the late nineteenth century as a refuge for immigrant laborers and merchants in which to form a community to raise families and conduct business. But this enclave for expression, identity, and community is also the embodiment of historical legacies and personal and collective memories.

In her book Ethnic Renewal in Philadelphia’s Chinatown, Kathryn Wilson charts the unique history of this neighborhood, the community’s efforts to save and renew itself, and the continuing living community for subsequent waves of new immigration. Joining Dr. Wilson for this program at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania will be  community members she interviewed for the Ethnic Renewal project, including Mary Yee, one of the leaders of the Save Chinatown movement, and John Chin, who grew up in the neighborhood and serves as executive director of Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation. After the presentation, examples from HSP collections representing Chinatown’s history will be on display for exploration and discussion.

Admission free. For further information visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania calendar.

Read Kathryn Wilson's essay about Chinatown in The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia: link here.

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Come to Rutgers-Camden on Rutgers Day, April 30, to meet the people behind the scenes of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia. Explore your region with a digital scavenger hunt and test your knowledge with the Camden Connections game. Look for us in the Campus Center, and explore the many other activities of Rutgers Day.

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Get loud in the library this February as the Historical Society of Pennsylvania transforms from a shushed library into a raucous dance hall. Dance the night away as the sounds of Jazz Age America fill HSP's halls with tunes from the Philadelphia-based band Bitters & Rye. Prior to cutting loose on the dance floor, frisk your whiskers with a presentation by music historian Jack McCarthy as he explores Philadelphia's prominence in jazz history with stories and images of the city's groundbreaking jazz artists

For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania events calendar.

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John Fryer – disguised as Dr. Anonymous - urged doctors not to treat gays and lesbians as "sick."  But there was another man behind that mask:  a devoted choir and organ master.  Be the first to hear a newly digitized recording found in his collection as we explore what church music meant to him and how it evolves as society and culture change. The Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Embedded Artist Ain Gordon will also unveil a recording found in the Fryer collection.

For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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Philadelphia Orchestra Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin will speak at this program exploring the intimate connection between Gustav Mahler’s 8th Symphony (also known as the “Symphony of a Thousand”) and the international emergence of the Orchestra.

For information about the cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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Music has been used both as a vehicle for reform and repression during the pursuits of American ethnic and racial justice. Using historical sheet music, broadsides from local theaters, and musical recordings and performances, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania explores the various ways Philadelphia popular culture has depicted American ethnic groups throughout the past two centuries with Sights & Sounds of our Multiethnic Past. Far from "high culture," these musical and artistic characterizations were often irreverent and poked fun at the proclivities and habits of different ethnic or racial groups living in Philadelphia. However, these materials also document prevailing prejudices and bigotry, offering a sneak peek into the development of social attitudes via popular music and theater. Collection materials from the Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies – many not seen for decades – will also be on view.

For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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Philadelphia has an extraordinarily rich and important musical history. From the late eighteenth century, when it was the political and cultural capital of the American colonies, to the present, the city has nurtured numerous ground breaking musical styles and artists and been at the forefront of some of the world’s most significant musical developments. Music historian Jack McCarthy explores some of the highlights of Philadelphia music over the course of more than 330 years. Featured will be the stories of America’s first song composer, first African American to have his music published, the nation’s first “mega-concert,” great organizations such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia International Records, and Cameo-Parkway Records, as well as many of the city’s groundbreaking artists in classical music, jazz, gospel, rock n’ roll, rhythm & blues/soul.

For further information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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Applications are now being accepted for this new teacher workshop funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Cultures of Independence: Perspectives on Independence Hall and the Meaning of Freedom will raise awareness of how Independence Hall has been involved in the ongoing process of creating a nation and civic life, not just in the magical moment of July 1776.  During each day of  a week-long workshop, 36 teachers will be immersed in a process of discovering and developing strategies for teaching the ongoing history of the American independence. Dr. Charlene Mires, author of Independence Hall in American Memory and Editor-in-Chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia will be the scholar-in-residence.

The workshop will be offered twice:  June 21-26 and July 26-July 31. Applications are now being accepted through March 2, 2015. 
For additional information about the program and procedures for application, visit the workshop website hosted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

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Applications are now being accepted for this new teacher workshop funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Cultures of Independence: Perspectives on Independence Hall and the Meaning of Freedom will raise awareness of how Independence Hall has been involved in the ongoing process of creating a nation and civic life, not just in the magical moment of July 1776.  During each day of  a week-long workshop, 36 teachers will be immersed in a process of discovering and developing strategies for teaching the ongoing history of the American independence. Dr. Charlene Mires, author of Independence Hall in American Memory and Editor-in-Chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia will be the scholar-in-residence.

The workshop will be offered twice:  June 21-26 and July 26-July 31. Applications are now being accepted through March 2, 2015. 
For additional information about the program and procedures for application, visit the workshop website hosted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

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Philadelphia boasts one of the oldest, largest and most diverse park systems in the United States. Yet the city’s parks receive scant attention in histories of landscape design and city planning. In Counting Trees: The Search for Fairmount Park, Elizabeth Milroy, author of The Grid and the River: Philadelphia’s Green Places, 1682-1876, will describe the development of Philadelphia’s urban parks in the two centuries after William Penn and Thomas Holme drew public squares on the seminal city plan.

This program is FREE but registration is required.

Elizabeth Milroy has contributed several essays to The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia, including a history of Philadelphia's public parks.

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Applications are now being accepted for this new teacher workshop funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Cultures of Independence: Perspectives on Independence Hall and the Meaning of Freedom will raise awareness of how Independence Hall has been involved in the ongoing process of creating a nation and civic life, not just in the magical moment of July 1776.  During each day of  a week-long workshop, 36 teachers will be immersed in a process of discovering and developing strategies for teaching the ongoing history of the American independence. Dr. Charlene Mires, author of Independence Hall in American Memory and Editor-in-Chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia will be the scholar-in-residence.

The workshop will be offered twice:  June 21-26 and July 26-July 31. Applications are now being accepted through March 2, 2015. 
For additional information about the program and procedures for application, visit the workshop website hosted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

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Applications are now being accepted for this new teacher workshop funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Cultures of Independence: Perspectives on Independence Hall and the Meaning of Freedom will raise awareness of how Independence Hall has been involved in the ongoing process of creating a nation and civic life, not just in the magical moment of July 1776.  During each day of  a week-long workshop, 36 teachers will be immersed in a process of discovering and developing strategies for teaching the ongoing history of the American independence. Dr. Charlene Mires, author of Independence Hall in American Memory and Editor-in-Chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia will be the scholar-in-residence.

The workshop will be offered twice:  June 21-26 and July 26-July 31. Applications are now being accepted through March 2, 2015. 
For additional information about the program and procedures for application, visit the workshop website hosted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

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Philadelphia has an extraordinarily rich and important musical history. From the late eighteenth century, when it was the political and cultural capital of the American colonies, to the present, the city has nurtured numerous ground breaking musical styles and artists and been at the forefront of some of the world’s most significant musical developments. Music historian Jack McCarthy explores some of the highlights of Philadelphia music over the course of more than 330 years. Featured will be the stories of America’s first song composer, first African American to have his music published, the nation’s first “mega-concert,” great organizations such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia International Records, and Cameo-Parkway Records, as well as many of the city’s groundbreaking artists in classical music, jazz, gospel, rock n’ roll, rhythm & blues/soul.

For further information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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Get loud in the library this February as the Historical Society of Pennsylvania transforms from a shushed library into a raucous dance hall. Dance the night away as the sounds of Jazz Age America fill HSP's halls with tunes from the Philadelphia-based band Bitters & Rye. Prior to cutting loose on the dance floor, frisk your whiskers with a presentation by music historian Jack McCarthy as he explores Philadelphia's prominence in jazz history with stories and images of the city's groundbreaking jazz artists

For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania events calendar.

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Music has been used both as a vehicle for reform and repression during the pursuits of American ethnic and racial justice. Using historical sheet music, broadsides from local theaters, and musical recordings and performances, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania explores the various ways Philadelphia popular culture has depicted American ethnic groups throughout the past two centuries with Sights & Sounds of our Multiethnic Past. Far from "high culture," these musical and artistic characterizations were often irreverent and poked fun at the proclivities and habits of different ethnic or racial groups living in Philadelphia. However, these materials also document prevailing prejudices and bigotry, offering a sneak peek into the development of social attitudes via popular music and theater. Collection materials from the Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies – many not seen for decades – will also be on view.

For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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Philadelphia Orchestra Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin will speak at this program exploring the intimate connection between Gustav Mahler’s 8th Symphony (also known as the “Symphony of a Thousand”) and the international emergence of the Orchestra.

For information about the cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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John Fryer – disguised as Dr. Anonymous - urged doctors not to treat gays and lesbians as "sick."  But there was another man behind that mask:  a devoted choir and organ master.  Be the first to hear a newly digitized recording found in his collection as we explore what church music meant to him and how it evolves as society and culture change. The Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Embedded Artist Ain Gordon will also unveil a recording found in the Fryer collection.

For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Memories & Melodies web page.

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Come to Rutgers-Camden on Rutgers Day, April 30, to meet the people behind the scenes of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia. Explore your region with a digital scavenger hunt and test your knowledge with the Camden Connections game. Look for us in the Campus Center, and explore the many other activities of Rutgers Day.

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 6-7:30 p.m.
Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

Philadelphia’s Chinatown, like many urban Chinatowns, began in the late nineteenth century as a refuge for immigrant laborers and merchants in which to form a community to raise families and conduct business. But this enclave for expression, identity, and community is also the embodiment of historical legacies and personal and collective memories.

In her book Ethnic Renewal in Philadelphia’s Chinatown, Kathryn Wilson charts the unique history of this neighborhood, the community’s efforts to save and renew itself, and the continuing living community for subsequent waves of new immigration. Joining Dr. Wilson for this program at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania will be  community members she interviewed for the Ethnic Renewal project, including Mary Yee, one of the leaders of the Save Chinatown movement, and John Chin, who grew up in the neighborhood and serves as executive director of Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation. After the presentation, examples from HSP collections representing Chinatown’s history will be on display for exploration and discussion.

Admission free. For further information visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania calendar.

Read Kathryn Wilson's essay about Chinatown in The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia: link here.

[time] => 6-7:30 p.m. [url] => http://philadelphiaencyclopedia.org/events/co-sponsored-event-ethnic-renewal-in-philadelphias-chinatown/ [links] => ) [1465948800] => Array ( [startdate] => June 15, 2016 [enddate] => [no-end-date] => 1 [location] => Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia [title] => Co-Sponsored Event | Counting Trees: The Search for Fairmount Park [content] =>

Philadelphia boasts one of the oldest, largest and most diverse park systems in the United States. Yet the city’s parks receive scant attention in histories of landscape design and city planning. In Counting Trees: The Search for Fairmount Park, Elizabeth Milroy, author of The Grid and the River: Philadelphia’s Green Places, 1682-1876, will describe the development of Philadelphia’s urban parks in the two centuries after William Penn and Thomas Holme drew public squares on the seminal city plan.

This program is FREE but registration is required.

Elizabeth Milroy has contributed several essays to The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia, including a history of Philadelphia's public parks.

[time] => 6-7 p.m. [url] => http://philadelphiaencyclopedia.org/events/co-sponsored-event-counting-trees-the-search-for-fairmount-park/ [links] => ) )

Upcoming Events


Archived Events

  • June 15, 2016, 6-7 p.m.—Co-Sponsored Event | Counting Trees: The Search for Fairmount Park

    Philadelphia boasts one of the oldest, largest and most diverse park systems in the United States. Yet the city’s parks receive scant attention in histories of landscape design and city planning. In Counting Trees: The Search for Fairmount Park, Elizabeth Milroy, author of The Grid and the River: Philadelphia’s Green Places, 1682-1876, will describe the development of Philadelphia’s urban parks in the two centuries after William Penn and Thomas Holme drew public squares on the seminal city plan.

    This program is FREE but registration is required.

    Elizabeth Milroy has contributed several essays to The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia, including a history of Philadelphia’s public parks.


    Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

  • May 18, 2016, 6-7:30 p.m.—Co-Sponsored Event: Ethnic Renewal in Philadelphia’s Chinatown

    Wednesday, May 18, 2016, 6-7:30 p.m.
    Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

    Philadelphia’s Chinatown, like many urban Chinatowns, began in the late nineteenth century as a refuge for immigrant laborers and merchants in which to form a community to raise families and conduct business. But this enclave for expression, identity, and community is also the embodiment of historical legacies and personal and collective memories.

    In her book Ethnic Renewal in Philadelphia’s Chinatown, Kathryn Wilson charts the unique history of this neighborhood, the community’s efforts to save and renew itself, and the continuing living community for subsequent waves of new immigration. Joining Dr. Wilson for this program at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania will be  community members she interviewed for the Ethnic Renewal project, including Mary Yee, one of the leaders of the Save Chinatown movement, and John Chin, who grew up in the neighborhood and serves as executive director of Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation. After the presentation, examples from HSP collections representing Chinatown’s history will be on display for exploration and discussion.

    Admission free. For further information visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania calendar.

    Read Kathryn Wilson’s essay about Chinatown in The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia: link here.


    Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

  • April 30, 2016, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.—Know Your Region: Encyclopedia of Fun!

    Come to Rutgers-Camden on Rutgers Day, April 30, to meet the people behind the scenes of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia. Explore your region with a digital scavenger hunt and test your knowledge with the Camden Connections game. Look for us in the Campus Center, and explore the many other activities of Rutgers Day.


    Location: Rutgers-Camden

  • March 31, 2016, 6:30-8:30 p.m.—Co-Sponsored Event: “The (Musical) Spark in My Life”

    John Fryer – disguised as Dr. Anonymous – urged doctors not to treat gays and lesbians as “sick.”  But there was another man behind that mask:  a devoted choir and organ master.  Be the first to hear a newly digitized recording found in his collection as we explore what church music meant to him and how it evolves as society and culture change. The Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s Embedded Artist Ain Gordon will also unveil a recording found in the Fryer collection.

    For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s Memories & Melodies web page.


    Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

  • March 08, 2016, 6:30-8:30 p.m.—Co-Sponsored Event: The Symphony of a Thousand

    Philadelphia Orchestra Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin will speak at this program exploring the intimate connection between Gustav Mahler’s 8th Symphony (also known as the “Symphony of a Thousand”) and the international emergence of the Orchestra.

    For information about the cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s Memories & Melodies web page.


    Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

  • March 02, 2016, 6-7 p.m.—Co-Sponsored Event: Sights & Sounds of Our Ethnic Past

    Music has been used both as a vehicle for reform and repression during the pursuits of American ethnic and racial justice. Using historical sheet music, broadsides from local theaters, and musical recordings and performances, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania explores the various ways Philadelphia popular culture has depicted American ethnic groups throughout the past two centuries with Sights & Sounds of our Multiethnic Past. Far from “high culture,” these musical and artistic characterizations were often irreverent and poked fun at the proclivities and habits of different ethnic or racial groups living in Philadelphia. However, these materials also document prevailing prejudices and bigotry, offering a sneak peek into the development of social attitudes via popular music and theater. Collection materials from the Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies – many not seen for decades – will also be on view.

    For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s Memories & Melodies web page.


    Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

  • February 25, 2016, 6:30-8:30 p.m.—Co-Sponsored Event: Swingin’ at the Society

    Get loud in the library this February as the Historical Society of Pennsylvania transforms from a shushed library into a raucous dance hall. Dance the night away as the sounds of Jazz Age America fill HSP’s halls with tunes from the Philadelphia-based band Bitters & Rye. Prior to cutting loose on the dance floor, frisk your whiskers with a presentation by music historian Jack McCarthy as he explores Philadelphia’s prominence in jazz history with stories and images of the city’s groundbreaking jazz artists

    For information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania events calendar.


    Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

  • February 17, 2016, 6-7 p.m.—Co-Sponsored Event: Philadelphia, City of Music

    Philadelphia has an extraordinarily rich and important musical history. From the late eighteenth century, when it was the political and cultural capital of the American colonies, to the present, the city has nurtured numerous ground breaking musical styles and artists and been at the forefront of some of the world’s most significant musical developments. Music historian Jack McCarthy explores some of the highlights of Philadelphia music over the course of more than 330 years. Featured will be the stories of America’s first song composer, first African American to have his music published, the nation’s first “mega-concert,” great organizations such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia International Records, and Cameo-Parkway Records, as well as many of the city’s groundbreaking artists in classical music, jazz, gospel, rock n’ roll, rhythm & blues/soul.

    For further information about cost of admission and registration, visit the Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s Memories & Melodies web page.


    Location: Historical Society of Pennsylvania, 1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia

  • July 26, 2015-July 31, 2015—NEH Teacher Institute: Cultures of Independence

    Applications are now being accepted for this new teacher workshop funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Cultures of Independence: Perspectives on Independence Hall and the Meaning of Freedom will raise awareness of how Independence Hall has been involved in the ongoing process of creating a nation and civic life, not just in the magical moment of July 1776.  During each day of  a week-long workshop, 36 teachers will be immersed in a process of discovering and developing strategies for teaching the ongoing history of the American independence. Dr. Charlene Mires, author of Independence Hall in American Memory and Editor-in-Chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia will be the scholar-in-residence.

    The workshop will be offered twice:  June 21-26 and July 26-July 31. Applications are now being accepted through March 2, 2015. 
    For additional information about the program and procedures for application, visit the workshop website hosted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.


    Location: Philadelphia

  • June 21, 2015-June 26, 2015—NEH Teacher Institute: Cultures of Independence

    Applications are now being accepted for this new teacher workshop funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.  Cultures of Independence: Perspectives on Independence Hall and the Meaning of Freedom will raise awareness of how Independence Hall has been involved in the ongoing process of creating a nation and civic life, not just in the magical moment of July 1776.  During each day of  a week-long workshop, 36 teachers will be immersed in a process of discovering and developing strategies for teaching the ongoing history of the American independence. Dr. Charlene Mires, author of Independence Hall in American Memory and Editor-in-Chief of The Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia will be the scholar-in-residence.

    The workshop will be offered twice:  June 21-26 and July 26-July 31. Applications are now being accepted through March 2, 2015. 
    For additional information about the program and procedures for application, visit the workshop website hosted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.


    Location: Philadelphia

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