The Jewish Festival of Lights

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Hanukkah (Chanukah) the Jewish Festival of Lights is held during the darkest time of the year in the northern hemisphere. This year the eight day observance begins at sunset on December 16 and concludes at sunset on December 24. The story of Hanukkah is rooted in history with the Jewish people’s victory in 162 BCE over the Greeks in the Maccabean War. After their victory, they re-dedicated the Temple in Jerusalem.

Philadelphia’s Connection to the Establishment of Thanksgiving

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Philadelphia’s connection to the establishment of Thanksgiving as a national holiday is a story we often forget to tell. Originally from New England, Sarah Josepha Hale, the editor of Godey’s Lady’s Book since 1837, moved to Philadelphia in 1841 where she lived till her death in 1879. Under her guidance for 40 years, Godey’s became an influential voice on topics including fashion, food, manners, family life, women’s education, patriotism, religion in American life, and the preservation of historic sites.

Philadelphia's Quaker Lace Company.

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This worker at Philadelphia’s Quaker Lace Company factory is putting the finishing touches on the pattern that will be used to program the Jacquard loom that will produce Thanksgiving-themed tablecloths of machine-made lace. This design features traditional symbols associated with the American celebration of Thanksgiving -turkeys, pumpkins, fall foliage, and Pilgrims and native people eating together.

Philadelphians, the 'Great' War, and the World

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November 11, 2014 is Veterans Day, a federal holiday, when most public schools and many workplaces (including the Philadelphia History Museum) will be closed. In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson declared that November 11th would be Armistice Day, a day to commemorate the end of World War I with the signing of the official end of hostilities on “the eleventh day of the eleventh month.” In 1954, Congress amended Armistice Day to become Veterans Day, to honor the service of all veterans of all wars.

Celebrating Jeffrey Ray Day

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It’s hard to say ‘good-by and have a happy retirement’ to someone who knows all the nooks and crannies of the Philadelphia History Museum. Jeffrey Ray, Senior Curator, had been with the Philadelphia History Museum for 29 years. He not only knew when the old boiler system had been last repaired, he also could tell you a story about what happened when they put in the Marian Mitchell Garden back in the 1991. 

An Interview with Author Thom Nickels Of Legendary Locals of Center City Philadelphia

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Thursday, November 13, 2014 - 5:30pm - 7:30pm
Join us for an evening with author Thom Nickels as he reveals the intriguing characters and everyday citizens who have made Center City Philadelphia’s history legendary. Legendary Locals of Center City Philadelphia shares the stories of unique individuals and groups, past and present, who have had a lasting impact on the community throughout its history. Accompanying the discussion will be a live painting by Philadelphia Pop Artist Perry Milou.  

Hey, Philadelphia! Are you ready for the City Social?

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Hey, Philadelphia! Are you ready for the City Social?

For the first time in over 72 years, the Philadelphia History Museum, will host a fundraiser on October 14, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., to help support and bring awareness to the newly remodeled museum. Deemed “City Social” the event takes place in the Museum’s 1826 historic building and garden with Mayor Michael A. Nutter and First Lady Lisa Nutter as its first honorees.

A CITY OF IMMIGRATION: THE MAKING OF PHILADELPHIA

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Since the founding of Philadelphia, immigrants shaped, and continue to shape, how people work, interact, and create in Philadelphia. William Penn, Philadelphia’s founding father, was an immigrant from England. Consequently, the stories of immigrants are essential in the telling of this city’s history. This is represented in our galleries. As you explore our galleries, use this guide to focus on how immigration has contributed to the making of today’s vibrant and ever-changing Philadelphia.

"Tell your Northern Liberties Story"

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I moved to Northern Liberties when I graduated from art school in 1978. I rented the top floor of a four-story factory building at 3rd and Green Streets with one of my fellow sculpture students. We had 2,000 square feet, huge skylights, and a first, no heat. The rest of our building was completely empty – the owners, who had a porno pint shop on the first floor, had moved out. The rest of our block was empty too and we used to tell our friends that we lived at “3rd and Nowhere”.

THE WORLD’S GREATEST WORKSHOP: Work and Labor in Philadelphia

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A 1908 infographic published by the Executive Committee of Founders Week labeled Philadelphia “The World’s Greatest Workshop,” so named for its strong industrial tradition. Since its founding Philadelphia has been shaped by work, whether craft production, manufacturing, or art. As you explore our galleries today, use this guide to focus on how Philadelphians have worked and their legacy of labor.