About The
Spruce Hill District

About Philadelphia
Historic Districts


Further Reading

Frequently Asked



Spruce Hill Historic District
For Further Reading


There are a wide variety of materials that cover historic preservation in general and the history and development of Philadelphia, West Philadelphia, and University City in particular. The following list is by no means comprehensive, but should provide a good start for any research on the area.

Philadelphia History | West Philadelphia History
Web Resources | Historic Preservation

General histories of Philadelphia

  • Russell F. Weigley (ed.), Philadelphia: A 300 Year History, 1982
  • Thomas J. Scharf and Thompson Westcott, History of Philadelphia, 1609-1884, 3 vols., 1884
  • John Cotter, The Buried Past: An Archaeological History of Philadelphia, 1992

Histories specific to West Philadelphia and University City

  • Allen Meyers, Jewish Community of West Philadelphia, 2001
  • Leon S. Rosenthal, A History of Philadelphia's University City, 1963
  • Robert Morris Skaler, West Philadelphia: University City to 52nd Street, 2002 (to be published late February)
  • M. Lafitte Viera, West Philadelphia Illustrated: Early History of West Philadelphia and Its Environs; Its People and Its Historical Points, 1903

Some books with sections dealing with West Philadelphia

  • Sam Bass Warner, The Private City, 1968, see Chapter IX
  • John R. Stilgoe, Borderland: Origins of the American Suburb, 1820-1939, 1988, see Chapter 12
  • Robert Shackleton, The Book of Philadelphia, 1918, see Chapter XVII "A College Town Within the City"
  • Essays by Christopher Morley collected in Ken Kalfus, editor, Christopher Morley's Philadelphia, 1990, see "In West Philadelphia" and "The University and the Urchin"
  • Joseph Jackson, Market Street, Philadelphia, (1918?), see Chapter XXV "West Philadelphia-Washington Street and the West Chester Road-Hamiltonville"

Resources on the World Wide Web

Readings on Historic Preservation