Free Library of Philadelphia
1.  When did the Strawbridge & Clothier department store in Philadelphia first open?
Strawbridge & Clothier opened at 8th and Market Streets in Philadelphia on July 1, 1868. The store was sold by the Strawbridge and Clothier families to May Dept. Stores on July 15, 1996, and the name was changed to Strawbridge's.

Source: GI Vertical File--Philadelphia--Dept. stores
2.  When did John Wanamaker first open his department store in Philadelphia?
Wanamaker opened a menswear store on April 8, 1861, called Oak Hall. In May 1876 he moved it to 13th & Market Sts. and renamed it the Grand Depot. In 1877 the store was expanded and became a department store.

Source: GI Vertical File--Philadelphia--Dept. stores
3.  What was the original name of Market Street in Philadelphia?

William Penn wanted the main east-west street in Philadelphia to be called High Street. By 1750 High Street was commonly called Market.

Source: Mermaids, Monasteries, Cherokees, and Custer: The Stories Behind Philadelphia Street Names, 1990, p.150, Robert I. Alotta, 917.4811 AL73M

4.  When President Washington resided in Philadelphia, where did he live?
President Washington lived in a house at what is now 528 Market Street. He rejected the offer of residing in a special Presidential mansion.

Source: Bulletin Almanac and Yearbook, 1976, p.177, 917.481 B87 1976
5.  Where did Thomas Jefferson write much of The Declaration of Independence?
Thomas Jefferson was living at Graff House, at 7th and Market Streets in Philadelphia, when he wrote the first draft of the Declaration.

Source: Bulletin Almanac and Yearbook, 1976, p.267, 917.481 B87 1976
6.  Where was Lit Brothers' Department Store in Philadelphia?
Built, or rather put together from 1850 till 1917, Lit Bros. involved over 7 stores which ran along the 700 block on Market Street in Center City. Two of the buildings were of cast-iron construction.

Source: Webster. Philadelphia Preserved. 1976, p.51,82-3.
7.  What is the oldest horticultural society in the United States?
The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society is the oldest horticultural society in the United States. It was organized in November of 1827 at the Franklin Institute which was then located at 7th Street off Market Street.

Source: Bulletin Almanac and Yearbook, 1976, p.574, 917.481 B87 1976
8.  What was the first modern skyscraper in Philadelphia?
It was the PSFS Building, designed by George Howe and William Lecaze, and then constructed by the Philadelphia Saving Fund Society in 1932. Standing at 12th and Market Streets, it rose 36-stories high, and was topped by a lighted sign reading PSFS.

Source: Philadelphia Inq., 12/12/1992
9.  What is the origin of Philadelphia's world-famous Reading Terminal Market?
There was an out-door market on High(now Market)Street in 1693. There has been an indoor market at 12th and Market since 1861. When the Reading Railroad built their terminal in the 1890s, the merchants moved their booths under the train sheds.

Source: Philadelphia Daily News, 11/23/1990
10.  What was the first covered bridge in the United States?

The first covered bridge in America was built in Philadelphia between 1801 and 1805. It crossed the Schuylkill River at Market Street.

Source: Workshop of the World: A Selective Guide to the Industrial Archeology of Philadelphia, 1990, p.2:3, The Oliver Evans Chapter of The Society for Industrial Archeology, 900 W892o