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HomeCalendar"Ladies of the Street" with Tom Keels, 2pm, Falls Library

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"Ladies of the Street" with Tom Keels, 2pm, Falls Library

“The Ladies of the Street” with Thomas Keels

Wednesday, March 13, 2 PM

Falls of Schuylkill Library Meeting Room, 3501 Midvale Avenue


The Sesqui-Centennial International Exposition of 1926, held in South Philadelphia, was meant to be the greatest world's fair since the 1876 Centennial.  Thanks to political corruption, greed, egotism, and the wettest summer on record, it became a crumbling, sodden, bankrupt mess, Philadelphia's "forgotten fair."


One of the few bright spots of the Sesqui-Centennial was the High Street of 1776, a recreation of a Federal-era Market Street lined with 22 reconstructions of vanished historic structures, from William Penn's Slate Roof House to the Jefferson Declaration House.  Created by the Women's Committee, the Street of 1776 was the Sesqui's most popular single attraction, and one of the few to turn a profit.  Other popular attractions created by women included Sulgrave Manor, a replica of the ancestral English home of the Washington family.  “The Ladies of the Street” describes how Philadelphia women defied the corrupt Republican Organization to create some of the fair's most memorable monuments.


About the speaker

Tom Keels is a lecturer, writer, and commentator specializing in Philadelphia history and architecture.  He has published seven books.  The latest, Sesqui!  Greed, Graft, and The Forgotten World's Fair of 1926, tells how Philadelphia's rampant culture of political corruption and "pay-to-play" turned the fair into a gigantic boondoggle, making the city’s second world's fair as big a failure as the 1876 Centennial was a success.


Tom has given lectures for many organizations in Philadelphia and beyond, including “Philadelphia’s Golden Age of Retail” and “Forgotten Philadelphia” in East Falls.  For many years, he’s been a tour guide at Laurel Hill Cemetery.  Click here [link to] to learn more about him.



Everyone welcome.  Free.  No advance registration.

Sponsored by East Falls Village and East Falls Historical Society


Wednesday, March 13, 2024, 2:00 PM Eastern Time (US & Canada) (UTC-05:00)
Falls of Schuylkill Library Meeting Room - Midvale entrance
3501 Midvale Avenue
Philadelphia, PA  
Additional Info:
Everyone welcome!
Registration is not Required
Payment In Full In Advance Only