Philadelphia history is inextricably linked with the history of America’s independence. Many people travel to Philly to gain a sense of understanding about different aspects of Colonial history, including the Declaration of Independence, and to see the first capital of the United States. During their trip, visitors learn many facts about Philadelphia and always in an interesting fashion. From walking tours to exhibitions to architecture, travelers will find out about the colonial history of Philadelphia while at the same time enjoying the shopping, spas, attractions, and dining of the modern city.
Philadelphia history began in 1682 when the city was founded by William Penn. Prior to the arrival of European settlers, Lenape Indians inhabited the area, but Penn bought the land from the natives when he received a charter for the city in 1681 from King Charles II. Fairly quickly, Philadelphia expanded into an important city, which was shown politically by the city hosting the First and Second Continental Congresses, in 1774 and 1775, respectively. The colonial history of Philadelphia is entwined with the American Revolution, and learning these facts today is a source of pride for any citizen or visitor who desires to learn more. The founding fathers had a beautiful outline for a new country, and it was on the streets of Philadelphia that these dreams were created and discussed.
Of the many facts about Philadelphia that are commonly known is that the city was chosen to be a temporary capital of the US. In the beginning of the nineteenth century, the government left Philadelphia, but other important institutions remained. Philly became known as the financial center of the country, and local culture flourished as well. A new stage in Philadelphia history came next: industrialization. Textiles were a booming industry in Philadelphia, and many immigrants, mostly from Germany and Ireland, arrived to keep the mills running. This fact contributes to the cultural melting pot that Philadelphia is today.
Many people travel to Philadelphia to learn about the history of Ben Franklin. A little-known fact is that he ran away from his native Boston at 16 and moved to Philadelphia, where he trained as a printer. Without any formal education, he was elected to the Continental Congress in 1775 and left his mark significantly. Helping Jefferson with the creation of an important document, Ben Franklin became heavily associated with the Declaration of Independence. Franklin is a distinctly American figure, who worked his way up from the very bottom to the very top. These types of stories make up the colonial history of Philadelphia and are inspiring to all visitors who hear them.
Not many facts about Philadelphia in the twentieth century are as widely known as its colonial history. The city became corrupted by a political machine, and the population started to decline as the city's crime rate rose, due in part to gangs and mafia-related violence. While many citizens decided to move to the suburbs, Philadelphia has enjoyed a bit of a renaissance. Fine restaurants, world-class museums, and historic hotels have attracted tourists to the city, and local residents take pride in maintaining their traditions. From the Italian Market to the contagious atmosphere at sports matches, your trip to Philadelphia will be a distinct and memorable one, with historic sites such as the Liberty Bell alongside the newest restaurants and clubs.