Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Away for the holidays - Philadelphia - 2

The Philadelphia Bus Tour, what we did see

Big bus tour, Stops 1 to 8

Stop 1 was on the corner of Filbert and 5thStreets, not exactly where the map says to go, but it’s on 5th street and you can see the busses, so it was not much of a problem.’

The problem was when we had to find our way there from the City Hall.  Having a handheld navigator, i.e. a mobile phone doesn’t necessarily make the task any easier, and I have been known to walk in the wrong direction.

At any rate, just up the way is Market street, and opposite the bus stop, is, you guessed it, a market.  Alas,, constrained for time, we didn’t get to visit it.


There’s a bus waiting, and we’re on it.  New driver, different tour guide, an older person who may have a different slant on the history of the city.

It’s cold, gloomy, and not a dearth of people about, and that prolonged wait for more tourists to materialize has failed, and we’re off.

Stop 1

This is just a short hop, step, and jump from the Independence National Park where we could, if we had walked in that direction, seen the Liberty Bell, though I think the first tour guild had told us it was not the actual real bell.  I wasn’t quite sure what to make of that, because didn’t we come here to see the real deal?

Aside from the market, on our way along 5th Street, and reaching Arch street, is the 5th Street Burial Ground belonging to the Christ Church, and established in 1719, and where Benjamin Franklin was buried in 1790.

There are four other signers of the Declaration of Independence in the graveyard.
Further on there is the US Mint where free tours are available.  The original mint stood on this site from 1792 after the Coinage Act was passed, and build in Philadelphia because it was the nation's capital at the time.

I think I would have preferred to see the old building, not the new, and currently the fourth iteration of the mint.  The third had not been demolished and is now the Community College of Philadelphia.  Something to see on another day, perhaps.

Stop 2

After going around the block, and up some narrow streets, we finish up back in Arch Street, not exactly the widest of streets, and arrive at Betsy Ross house.

Of course, Betsy Ross was the maker of the first American flag, which is an interesting way to gain notoriety, and whom it seems may have been incorrectly credited because there is no archival evidence she was asked to make it.

She did, however, make flags for the Pennsylvania navy at the time of the American Revolution.

The house we get to see, albeit briefly from the bus, is purportedly where she made the flag.  The house sits several blocks from Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.

Stop 4

Still in Arch street, this has both the National Constitution Centre and the Independence Visitor Centre nearby.

The National Constitution Centre has just about everything about the US Constitution within its walls, including a hall with 42 bronze statues of the founding fathers.

Stop 5

Chinatown, what more needs to be said?

Stops 6 and 7

Bookends for City Hall, and Love Park, well, it might not be actually called Love Park but the sign certainly makes a statement.

Stop 8

This is us, right here.

The thing is, if we had more time, I would have probably seen more, even visited a few of the places along the way.

Maybe next time.

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