Destination PA- Elfreth’s Alley

Destination PA

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — Philadelphia is known for its history, but did you know there are more than 300 years of history on just one of the city’s streets alone?

“Elfreth’s Alley” is known as one of the country’s oldest continuously inhabited streets.

“Walking down the street itself has lots of sights,” Ted Moust, director Elfreth’s Alley Museum, said. “The houses on this block we built between the 1720s and 1830s.”

The museum itself is a replica of how a working-class home looked around 200 years ago. Everything from the kitchen to the bedroom to the clothing resembles the time.

“We have objects related to the trades they practice and their daily lives, those kinds of things,” Moust said.

According to Moust, more than 100,000 people come from all over the world each year to walk the street and visit the museum.

Eric Silverman has lived on Elfreth’s Alley for more than three years. He is just one of many residents still living in the historic alley. According to Silverman, “the past meets the present” when it comes to the homes along the street.

“We have original floors, paneled walls, fireplaces, but brand-new model kitchen, flat-screen TV’s any full updated homes have,” Silverman said. “You get the best of both worlds.”

Silverman says that a lot of tourists don’t even know that people actually live here.

“You have had a few situations when someone forgot to lock their front door and they came down and there’s a tourist in their living room taking pictures and it’s like ‘excuse me I do live here,’” Silverman said.

Despite the possible intrusions, Silverman wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I love it, the tourists are generally fun. It really gives people that are visiting the city a taste of the whole history,” Silverman said.

Moust hopes that more people continue to visit and take a stroll down Elfreth’s Alley. He says it is a true walk through history.

“We don’t have a lot of places to look to see where working people lived over a really long period of time and I think this is a really important place to preserve for that reason,” Moust said.

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