15 Dec 2021

The History of Philadelphia

The History of Philadelphia

Philadelphia is a city located in southwest Pennsylvania. Philadelphia is the largest city in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the second largest city on the nation’s east coast.

Philadelphia is best known for the Liberty Bell, Rocky Balboa, Cheesesteaks and the Mummers Parade, which is a famous and unique way to bring in the new year. The city is also home to the renowned Philadelphia Orchestra.

This city is steeped in rich history and was a profound location during the founding of our country. Read on to learn more about Philadelphia’s role in U.S. history and how it’s evolved over time.

The Founding of Philadelphia

William Penn founded Philadelphia in the 1600s. Swedish, English and Dutch merchants had established trading posts around the Delaware Valley. In 1961, Charles II of England allowed William Penn a charter for what turned into the Pennsylvania colony. This was the nation’s first city and first capital. Philadelphia was the capital city of the United States until December of 1800, when Washington D.C was established. Philadelphia was the largest English-speaking city in the world after London during the American Revolution.

Philadelphia in the early 1600s was a difficult place to live, as there were houses to build, fields to farm, and bitterly cold winters to face. Children in this time had to grow up quickly and take on adult responsibilities when they were as young as 16. Children were expected to work, get married and become an adult member of society by this age.

William Penn named the city Philadelphia as he envisioned a city of religious tolerance where it was ensured there would be freedom of religion throughout Pennsylvania. Philadelphia was nicknamed “the City of Brotherly Love,” which comes from the Greek translation of the name, meaning brotherly love. This nickname was a promise to the people to maintain the religious freedom William Penn envisioned.

Philadelphia in the 1700s

In the 1700s, Philadelphia was quickly becoming a major trade center, as important exports were put in place while the population farmed produce to financially support the growing city. During the war in 1702 and 1713, Philadelphia’s trade was cut off by the Queen of England, which caused much financial strain. The war suffered by the depression in the 1720’s caused Philadelphia’s population to begin to gradually decrease.

In 1742, the Bloody Election took place. This event was caused by conflict between the Quakers and the Proprietary fraction, whose concern was financial gain for the city. Religious and political tensions grew as more religions were introduced into the city, including Pietists, Quakers, Anglicans and Catholics. This religious battle peaked in October 1742, which is now known as the “Bloody Election” or the “Philadelphia Election Riot of 1742.”

After this event, Philadelphia established a more permanent trading relationship, which Benjamin Franklin, who had become a leading citizen in the city, helped to improve. During this time, a hospital for the poor was built, a public library was established and the American Police Force was started. A fire department, named Union Fire Company, was also established. This fire department is still operating today. Philadelphia was now a thriving central city.

Philadelphia in the 1800s

Philadelphia was the United States’ capital until December of 1800. Philadelphia was home of the Constitutional Congress in which the U.S Constitution was composed after the Revolutionary War. This event was where John Hancook set his signature famous signature on a revolutionizing document.

Once the Constitution was ratified and George Washington became president, he spent his first year in New York City. Soon, the Residence Act made Philadelphia the temporary, official capital of the United States for 10 years beginning in December 1790. This ended in December 1800, when Washington D.C became the Capital City.

Philadelphia is still the largest city in Pennsylvania and the sixth most populated city in the United States.

During the 1800s, Philadelphia led the nation in industrial production. There was a great expansion in mining, railroads and petroleum, iron and steel production. Manufacturing also grow, making Philadelphia an international industrial leader. This set the position for the city’s economic status and defined many international connections. During this time is when most of the neighborhoods and charity organizations were established.

Philadelphia in the 1900s

During the 1900s, Philadelphia was described as “corrupt but content.” This was a time of great change for the city as far as politics were concerned. In 1939, the Young Turks, a group influenced by the Democratic Party’s New Deal, began to demand charter reform and a city planning commission. The democrats would eventually dominate politics in the city and most mayors in the late 1900s as members of the party.

During the 1900s, the city pursued its rich coal reserves and depended on the reliability of the vast Pennsylvania Railroad system. The city also established a deepwater port where most of the world’s wool supply flows steadily through.

Philadelphia’s population also grew significantly at this time through immigration from Ireland, southern and eastern Europe, Asia and the Caribbean. The industrial industry was growing steadily and there was opportunity for many people around the world.

Philadelphia in the 2000s

Philadelphia in the 2000s is the city we know and love today. The city is populated with 1.579 million people and home to some of the greatest attractions in the nation. Philadelphia is still a large contributor to the industrial industry, and it provides thousands of tons for export.

Philadelphia is no longer a political statement but a city built on Brotherly Love that offers this feeling to anyone who visits it. Philadelphia has become what it is today through its long history with war and political disputes, showcasing the history in its traditional buildings and historic attractions. You can explore almost every inch of the city through museums and tours and revisit where it has come from and how it came to be the city we know today.

This great city still stands and holds the values that our leaders once envisioned of freedom, acceptance and growth.

Let Streamline Philly Find You a Home in Philadelphia

The City of Brotherly Love is a spectacular city filled with rich history, great food and a culture you cannot find anywhere else. At Streamline Philly, we can help you find your perfect home in this beautiful city and settle in a place that holds so much of what Americans stand for.

Call this city your home, today. Connect with us online to get started!