Farmers, Merchants, and Land Speculators- The Rise of the Suburb in Northwest Philadelphia 

Presented by Warren Williams

This presentation will explore how “the German Township” went from an agricultural and early industrial community to one of the first urban suburbs in America in the years leading up to the Civil War. With the introduction of the railroad early in the 19th Century as an agent of change, we’ll look at the creation of large estates for the new industrial entrepreneurs and smaller “cottages” of the emerging managerial class. See how early Victorian tastemakers guided the emergence of new residential styles and defined new ideas about the changing meaning of one’s home as an opportunity of self-expression. 

Following the talk, Warren Williams will lead a walk highlighting the early houses in the suburban development. 

Warren Williams AIA is a retired architect with over 30 years experience, much of at the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority. Prior to his architectural career, he worked as a planner, specializing in energy research in California. Growing up in Bucks County, he has had a lifelong interest in history. He has lead walking tours exploring Philadelphia’s historic architecture and city planning for over 25 years and occasionally lectured on Philadelphia’s historical development. In his free time, he is an avid photographer of historic buildings and urban streetscapes.

Meet at Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion, 200 W Tulpehocken St, Philadelphia, PA 19144.

This series is presented in partnership with Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion

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