Past Events

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Past Events

Wednesday, 10/3/12
Genealogy Workshop

Ever wondered how to get into the Daughters of the American Revolution? Or Mayflower Society? Or more obscure groups such as the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick? James M. Beidler, author of an award-winning weekly newspaper column on genealogy, will discuss the qualifications for various groups and the types of documentary proof needed to complete applications. Beidler is the former vice president for development for the Federation of Genealogical Societies and the former executive director of the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania.

Monday, 10/1/12

Each year, more than half a million students nationwide participate in National History Day, a unique program in which students choose a topic related to the annual theme, conduct primary and secondary research, and present their findings. Learn about the program, how to introduce it into your classroom, and NHD resources available in Philadelphia. Refreshments will be served.

Thursday, 9/27/12
Special Event

At this event, presented by the Young Friends of HSP, guests will trace the history of cocktails from the ubiquitous rum punch of the 17th century all the way to the flirtini of 2012. Guest speaker Joseph Carlin, native Philadelphian and author of the newly released Cocktails: A Global History, will educate you on everything from liquor to mixers to ice, including how to make a classic punch.

Sunday, 9/23/12
Special Event

Treasures Society and 1824 Legacy Society members and their guests are invited to a cocktail reception at the Chestnut Hill home of HSP President Kim Sajet. By invitation only.

Tuesday, 9/18/12

This September marks the 225th anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution. The Historical Society has several versions of the Constitution, including the earliest surviving draft handwritten by Constitutional Convention delegate James Wilson and the first newspaper printing by The Pennsylvania Packet. HSP will display six original versions in its library, so visitors can see the evolution of this national treasure.

Thursday, 9/13/12
Lecture/Panel Discussion

Mrs. Goodfellow was a cook and confectioner who conducted cooking classes in her pastry shop in early 19th-century Philadelphia. Becky Diamond, author of Mrs. Goodfellow: The Story of America’s First Cooking School, will discuss what it was like to be a student under her tutelage and Philadelphia’s role as the premiere food city of its day. The lecture will be accompanied by a display of documents from the Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s collection, including several historic cookbooks.

Tuesday, 9/11/12
Special Event

Sheila Connolly is currently the author of two mystery series, the Orchard Mysteries and the Museum Mysteries, and she will soon be introducing the County Cork Mysteries set in Ireland. She is also a former staff member at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. Connolly will lead a lively discussion about how real events and people inspired her first Museum Mystery novel Fundraising the Dead, which is set at the fictional Society for the Preservation of Pennsylvania Antiquities.

Saturday, 9/8/12
Lecture/Panel Discussion

HSP staff will discuss the history of beekeeping in Philadelphia and the early beekeeping records from the Society’s collection, including those of Francis Daniel Pastorius, the founder of Germantown. This event is part of the Philadelphia Honey Festival. For more information about the festival, visit

Thursday, 8/2/12
Lecture/Panel Discussion

Join us for a lively debate between two historians who take opposing views on the need for thrift in America today. Princeton historian Sheldon Garon, author of Beyond Our Means: Why America Spends While the World Saves, and Rutgers historian James Livingston, author of Against Thrift: Why Consumer Culture Is Good for the Economy, the Environment and Your Soul, will argue their respective cases for and against thrift.

Sunday, 7/29/12
Teacher Workshop

Say the word "thrift" and people think of Benjamin Franklin and sayings like "a penny saved is a penny earned."  Or they might think about grandparents who suffered through the Great Depression and never stopped saving baggies and rubber bands.

Monday, 6/18/12

This summer marks the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812.  Labeled as “Mr. Madison’s War,” this conflict ultimately helped to form policy and promote national self confidence. HSP will host a one day document display that includes letters, maps, diaries, and prints from both the American and British sides, including a copy of the "Star-Spangled Banner" handwritten by Francis Scott Key.

Thursday, 6/14/12
Lecture/Panel Discussion

Maps and mapmaking have played an important role in Pennsylvania’s history. Join us for a conversation about HSP’s extensive map collection, including such treasures as first map of Philadelphia, the Walking Purchase, and the John Wallis Map of the United States. The guest speaker will be Joseph Garver, Librarian for Research Services of the Harvard Map Collection. Followed by a reception and document viewing. Please RSVP to Aja Raymond via email at or call 215-732-6200 x214.