Skip to main content

Weekend in Philadelphia - Independence National Historic Park

We only had the morning to spend in Philadelphia proper - so Maggie and I took in Independence National Historic Park.  For the complete photo set head over to flickr.
Independence National Historic Park is the birthplace of our great nation.  It was here that the Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation and the US Constitution was crafted and signed.

IMG_6727

Independence National Historic Park consists of 45 acres of history at every corner.  From Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell Center, and numerous other historical buildings, statues, and park squares.

 IMG_6729

There are a number of things to know before you head into the park.  First, the ground around Independence Hall is a secured area.  You will need to go through security to see Independece and Congress Halls.  Another tip, you must have a ticket to tour the interior of Independence Hall.  The tickets are free, but there are a few things you can do to maximize your time.

First, buy your tickets ahead of time online.  There is a convenience fee of $1.50 per ticket.  But you are able to save nearly 30 minutes in line, you are able to choose the time of the tour that you wish.  You can pick up your tickets any time that day, but one important note - if you do not pick up your tickets 45 minutes prior to your scheduled tour.  They will be returned to the general pool.

Second, be prepared for a security check. During busy periods wait times to go through security can be as long as 30 minutes.  The best times to tour Independence Hall is during the morning hours.  It took us 10 minutes to get through security at the Liberty Bell and less than five to get onto the Independence Hall grounds.

We only had the morning to tour Independence National Historic Park - so the first item we toured was the Liberty Bell Center.  The tour is free - and as mentioned you do need to go through security - and how long you wish to spend there is up to you.  You can go right to the bell or take a look at the numerous exhibits along the way.

IMG_6715

You don't realize the power of the Liberty Bell until you get up close and look at it.  It is amazing how one bell has become such a strong and powerful symbol of man's quest for liberty and freedom.  From civil rights and suffrage movements within the United States to freedom causes around the world, the over 250 year old bell continues to toll for freedom even though it hasn't been rung for nearly two centuries.

Nothing will stop the progress of Liberty

To tour the immediate grounds immediate to Independence Hall, you will need to pass through security. If you have about 30 or more minutes to kill before you scheduled tour, take a tour of Congress Hall.  The tour last 20 minutes - and it is definitely worth it - before or after Independence Hall.

IMG_6739

Congress Hall was originally built as the Philadelphia County Courthouse.  But it was commissioned to hold both houses of Congress from 1790 through 1800.  It was on the first floor house chamber (in the photo above) that Washington was inaugurated for his second term in 1793, and later John Adams in 1797.  But just as important, the Bill of Rights were debated and passed in the two floors of this building.

IMG_6754

The second floor was home to the Senate (viewed in the photo above) and many of the artifacts are indeed authentic.

Next, we toured Independence Hall.  The tour takes about 30 minutes and includes a brief discussion in the East Wing.  After the 10-15 minutes in the East Wing, we head into Independence Hall.  Independence Hall was originally built as the Pennsylvania State House.

The courtroom for the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is where we stop next.

IMG_6764

From there it was the Pennsylvania Assembly Hall.  It was here where our great nation was born.  The entire building was restored in 1950 to look as it did in 1776, and you can help but feel the history once you are inside it.

IMG_6771

Unfortunately, we weren't able to see more that morning.  If you have more time, you want to check out the National Constitutional Center, Franklin Court, Carpenter's Hall, or the Portrait Gallery at the Second Bank of the United States.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 232

This past month I drove the entirety of California State Route 232 in Ventura County. CA 232 is an approximately 4 miles State Highway aligned on Vineland Avenye which begins near Saticoy at CA 118 and traverses southwest to US Route 101 in Oxnard.  The alignment of CA 232 was first adopted into the State Highway System in 1933 as Legislative Route Number 154 according to CAhighways.org. CAhighways.org on LRN 154 As originally defined LRN 154 was aligned from LRN 9 (future CA 118) southwest to LRN 2/US 101 in El Rio.  This configuration of LRN 154 between CA 118/LRN 9 and US 101/LRN 2 can be seen on the 1935 California Division of Highways Map of Ventura County. 1935 Ventura County Highway Map According to CAhighways.org the route of LRN 154 was extended west from US 101/LRN 2 to US 101A/LRN 60 in 1951.  Unfortunately State Highway Maps do not show this extension due to it being extremely small. During the 1964 State Highway Renumbering LRN 154 was assigned CA 232.  Of n

Former US Route 50 and the South Lincoln Highway from Folsom east to Placerville

The corridor of Folsom of Sacramento County east to Placerville of El Dorado County has been a long established corridor of overland travel dating back to the California Gold Rush.  The Folsom-Placerville corridor was once part of the path of the Lake Tahoe Wagon Road which became the first California State Highway and later the South Lincoln Highway.  In time the South Lincoln Highway's surface alignment was inherited by US Route 50.  The Folsom-Placerville corridor also includes the communities of; Clarksville, Shingle Springs and El Dorado. Part 1; the history of the Lake Tahoe Wagon Road, South Lincoln Highway and US Route 50 through Folsom-Placerville Folsom is located on the American River/Lake Natoma of eastern Sacramento County.  That lands now occupied by the City of Folsom were part of Rancho Rio de los Americanos prior to the finding of gold at Sutter's Mill during 1848.  During the California Gold Rush the lands of Rancho Rio de los Americanos were purchased by Jose

US Route 101 through Gaviota Pass

US Route 101 in the Santa Ynez Mountains of Santa Barbara County, California passes through Gaviota Pass.  Gaviota Pass is most well known for being part of El Camino Real and the namesake Gaviota Tunnel which opened during 1953.  Since 1964 Gaviota Pass and US Route 101 have also carried a multiplex of California State Route 1.   Part 1; the history of the Gaviota Pass corridor Gaviota Pass is historic path of travel through the Santa Ynez Mountains of Santa Barbara County.  Gavoita Pass was a known route through the Santa Ynez Mountains which was utilized by the Chumash tribes before the arrival of Europeans.  Gaviota Pass was first explored by Spanish during the 1769 Portola Expedition of Las Californias.  The Portola Expedition opted to follow the coastline northward fearing that the established Chumash path through Gaviota Pass was too narrow to traverse.  In time Gaviota Pass became a favored established path of Spanish travel which bypassed the hazardous coastline as part of El