PO Box 31927, Philadelphia, PA 19104, +1 215-387-3019, info@uchs.net

Welcome | UCHS Fall Walking Tour
Eventbrite - University City Historical Society Walking Tour: Architecture & Its People

Upcoming Event

The UCHS fall event for 2015 will be a walking tour of Spruce Hill architecture and the people behind it.

Many fascinating stories await you as Mark N. Silber, professional tour guide and UCHS Board member, gives a behind-the-scenes look at the lives of the people from University City’s past and its amazingly diverse architecture. You’ll see the “Painted Ladies” of Spruce Street, the Chateauesque mansion of a cigar mogul, the international intrigue of a dentist to European royalty, and much more.

  • October 10, 2015 at 10:30 am
  • Meet at 40th & Spruce Streets
  • Philadelphia, PA 19104
  • $5 for members | $10 for non-members

Tickets can be purchased on the day of the event but advance reservations are encouraged.

Headlines Fall 2015

  • Ask the Experts: We need to replace our old, drafty windows. What would you recommend?
  • Profiles in Architecture: Henry Flower began his career as an architect in 1895. He went on to become one of Philadelphia’s most prolific architects in late-1890s and 1900s, with many commissions for brewer and real estate developer Frederick A. Poth.
  • University City Then & Now: The Ivan Apartments, 47th Street and Baltimore Avenue (1910 & 2010). As West Philadelphia became more populated in the early 1900s, multiple-housing options such as flat houses, tenements and apartment buildings became more in vogue.
  • Did You Know? On July 2, 1858, the West Philadelphia Passenger Railroad opened for business after the completion of the laying of tracks from Third Street along Market across the Permanent Bridge to Forty-first in West Philadelphia.
  • Glossary of Terms for Homeowners: "Venetian Blind" to "Wood Carpeting".


Nominations Scheduled for Review, Sept 16

Historic nominations scheduled for review on Wednesday, September 16 at 9:30 am, Room 578 in City Hall. The nominations of 3600-3630 Lancaster Avenue and 4300-02 Osage Ave/4304-06 Osage Ave to the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places will be considered by the Historic Commission’s Committee on Historic Designation at their September 16th meeting.

Baltimore Avenue Dollar Stroll, Sept 17

The Dollar Stroll returns on Thursday, September 17 from 5:30 to 8:30. As with the June 25th “Stroll,” the University City Historical Society will have a table on Baltimore Avenue in front of the Calvary Church. We will be offering a variety of items for sale, including one dollar “Green” memberships. Other items are books, mugs with artwork from Sylvia Barkan, posters and historic date markers for your University City home.

Sad Farewell to 40th & Pine

The Samuel Sloan-attributed Italianate mansion at 40th & Pine was demolished the week of August 23, 2015. The house, which stood at that location since 1853 was cleared for demolition by the Historical Commission in December of last year. A compromise plan to save and restore the mansion, which included the addition of an apartment building for student housing, was rejected by a handful of locals. Penn, the owner of the property, claimed financial hardship, which allowed for them to demolish the mansion for student housing.

The house didn't get much respect from many observers, mainly due to some unattractive additions made during the 1970s, when it was used as a nursing home. The hidden beauty of the original architecture was obscured by layers of cinder blocks. Oddly enough, it wasn't until the demolition began that the original house reappeared. With the mansion removed, Penn can now build for student-housing. Failure to reach a compromise between Penn and neighbors constituted a lose-lose situation.

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