Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Philadelphia, PA, Independence Hall and the Walking Tour, The City Tavern and Reading Terminal Market

From the Archives of 2007- I knew nothing about photography back then, so this is the best I can do. Since we lived in the suburbs of Philly from 1996 to 2003 I might add some older pictures later but for now this was a Conference we went to in 2007. It was fun to go back and actually stay in the City. I got to see parts of it that I never saw when we lived there because we would just take day trips in and out and usually just saw Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. This time we saw it more in depth and I fell in love with the city more than I ever had before.

My favorite was the City Tavern. Talk about experiencing history. I felt it was almost a holy place even though the actual building had burned down and was restored later. My next close favorite was the walking tour. I wish now that I had taken a journal and written down more about what I saw and felt. It was fascinating. There is nothing that makes me feel more patriotic than learning about the founding fathers and walking where they walked.

The first thing I did was take a hop on hop off tour. I always go on those if they are available. There were bronze statues everywhere. This one of George Washington is in front of the Museum of Art

They still have some original cobblestone

At the start of the Walking Tour I met a couple of signers. This one was blind. I visited with him for a minute and he was very informative. Unfortunately, now I can't remember the conversation. This is why we should keep journals I guess!

This was the Declaration House where Thomas Jefferson lived when he wrote the Declaration of Independence

Then we walked down "Signers Alley" with plaques dedicated to each signer

We walked by Independence Hall which you can take a tour of and it is fabulous

We saw re-enactments for children

Library Hall

Second Bank of the US
Carpenters Hall

First National Bank- We also saw the Supreme Court Building, and the American Philosophy Hall

We walked through Franklin court. We saw the foundation of Benjamin Franklin's home but nothing else was left of it. I am standing by it now and then we walk through the original archway and see the first Post Office  which Franklin started

Then we walk to the cemetery just around the corner to see Benjamin Franklin's grave

Benjamin's grave at Christ Church

These two large plaques flank either side of his grave

We walk by the Betsy Ross House

And end up at the National Constitution Center. It was started by Ronald Reagan but not finished for 15 years. It was a neat experience inside. They have a show about the constitution and then exhibits 

I love history and am very grateful to our founding fathers for what they sacrificed so that we now live a better life

This is our view from the Marriott- you can see a little of City Hall with it's ornate carvings

I loved the City Tavern experience. It's a must do for the Philadelphia experience

We were there early and so we almost had the place to ourselves

This says it all. I bought a City Tavern Cookbook which is as much fun to read as it is to cook from by Walter Staib who runs the restaurant. All the recipes are authentic from that time period and include recipes from George and Martha Washington and Thomas Jefferson

 I was surprised to see all the exotic foods they had available to them. Mostly because food was shipped in on boats from the West Indies

I had Martha Washington's Pot Pie

It was delicious!

The food was fabulous 

Love, love, loved it!

One night we decided to check out the Reading Terminal Market and get dinner there instead of eating out.  It was great- we bought some cheese, fruit and chocolate and had a much cheaper dinner than usual. It was tasty too!

They had everything under the sun

One night we went to "Wicked" in a beautiful theatre

The last thing we did was spend a couple of hours at the Museum of Art which I had always wanted to do when we lived there and never got around to it. It was fabulous. These were some of my favorites. The "Four Seasons" by Leon Frederic a Belgian painter from the early 1900s.