Historic Attractions

Germantown Historic Attractions
Courtesy of freedomsbackyard.com


Take a look at Historic Germantown and the great sites we have in Freedom’s Backyard.

Aces Museum

  • The ACES Museum, located in the heart of Historic Germantown, is home to Parker Hall, an unofficial USO and entertainment venue for Black soldiers during World War II. Today, the museum honors the sacrifice of minority veterans through exhibits and educational programming with a special community emphasis. ACES’s motto: Respect The Past, Nurture The Future.

Awbury Arboretum

  • Awbury Arboretum is a green oasis located in the Germantown neighborhood of Philadelphia. The mission of Awbury Arboretum is to preserve and interpret Awbury’s historic house and landscape, thereby, connecting an urban community with nature and history.

Cliveden / Upsala

  • Scene of the 1777 Battle of Germantown, one of the largest Revolutionary War battles, Cliveden’s importance in the War for Independence is matched by its dark place in the struggle for freedom in America. Home to Benjamin Chew, one of the largest slaveowners in the mid-Atlantic, Cliveden provides a look at some individual stories of enslavement, and insight into the early Underground Railroad movement in the 1780’s and 1790’s.

Concord School & The Upper Burying Ground

  • The Concord School and Upper Burying Ground were the scene of intense fighting during The Revolutionary War’s Battle of Germantown, a pivotal moment in America’s struggle for freedom. The grounds contain the graves of 31 American soldiers who died in the fight; many of them buried that afternoon by local teenage boys.

Germantown White House (Deshler-Morris)

  • President George Washington lived here twice, to seek refuge from the 1793 Yellow Fever epidemic in Philadelphia and as a summer retreat for the First Family in 1794.

Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion

  • The Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion is Philadelphia’s only authentically restored Victorian house museum and garden. Upon entering the museum, visitors step back in time to discover a living record of the comforts and tastes of the rising middle class in an era when gas lighting, grained woodwork and stenciled ceiling decorations were emblems of social standing.

Hood Cemetery

Hood Cemetary

Hood Cemetary is a beautiful green oasis within an urban neighborhood. One major problem – the exterior wall is a constant graffiti target.

  • Hood Cemetery is just one block away from W Rockland Street. Originally known as the lower burial ground, the cemetery was a secular burial ground for residents of lower Germantown and contains the graves of several prominent Philadelphians, as well as those of 41 Revolutionary War soldiers, and veterans of subsequent conflicts, including the War of 1812 and the Civil War.

Germantown Mennonite Historic Trust

  • Germantown’s historic Mennonite Meetinghouse, owned by the Germantown Mennonite Historic Trust, stands as a witness to the Mennonite families who sought freedom of religion and conscience in William Penn’s colony. The site houses the table where the first written protest against slavery in America was signed in the New World in 1688, a copy of which is on display.

Germantown Historical Society

  • The Germantown Historical Society is an educational and research center dedicated to preserving and interpreting the history of the original German Township in northwest Philadelphia. Encompassing the contemporary neighborhoods of Germantown, Mt. Airy, and Chestnut Hill and the Wissahickon Valley, greater Germantown is a dynamic and diverse community. The Society has important furniture, costumes, quilts, art and toys and a library and archive that is the most comprehensive collection on Germantown in the world.

Grumblethorpe

  • The Germantown Historical Society is an educational and research center dedicated to preserving and interpreting the history of the original German Township in northwest Philadelphia. Encompassing the contemporary neighborhoods of Germantown, Mt. Airy, and Chestnut Hill and the Wissahickon Valley, greater Germantown is a dynamic and diverse community. The Society has important furniture, costumes, quilts, art and toys and a library and archive that is the most comprehensive collection on Germantown in the world.

Historic RittenhouseTown

  • At the heart of the thriving early industrial village known as RittenhouseTown stood the first paper mill in British North America built along the Paper Mill Run by William Rittenhouse and his son, Nicholas, in 1690. This intimate cluster of buildings once enclosing both public and private space continues to remind us of the importance of the paper making industry to the development of early America and the essential role of the Rittenhouse family and their workers as suppliers of locally produced paper for letters, legal documents, maps and books. Visitors to Historic RittenhouseTown today can still experience the sense of community which has characterized this unique spot since the 17th century.

The Johnson House

  • The Johnson family were well known abolitionists who worked tirelessly to end slavery in the United States. They were also active in the cause of helping freed African Americans find a better way of life. The three generations of Johnsons who lived in the house during the abolition era were true exemplars of 19th Century social reform in American and were connected with such national figures as William Lloyd Garrison, Oliver Johnson, William Still, Lucretia Mott, Harriet Tubman, and John Greenleaf Whittier. During the 1850’s, the Johnson’s turned their house into an Underground Railroad station and it became a crucial stop-over on the network used by runaways en route to freedom in upstate New York and Canada. Read more.

Stenton

  • Stenton is known as one of the earliest, best-preserved and most believable historic houses in Philadelphia. Its distinguished Georgian architecture, its outstanding collection, and its superb documentation combine to create one of the most authentic house museums in the region. Through tours, educational programs and special events, Stenton continues to be an historic object lesson for visitors, giving them a sense of what life was like in the 18th Century.

Wyck

  • Wyck is a 2 ½ -acre urban oasis at the southwest corner of Germantown Avenue and Walnut Lane, which includes a historic house, rose garden, small farm and lawn. Wyck was home to nine generations of the same Quaker family, the Wistars and the Haines, who owned and lived on this “farm” in Germantown.