Monday, 8 August 2016

A (short!) day in Philadelphia


A distant view of Philadelphia city centre, as seen through the side of the Girard Point Bridge, which is a double-decker cantilever bridge carrying the trunk road Interstate 95 across the Schuylkill River. The bridge was opened in 1973 and carries three lanes of traffic across the river in each direction at each level.


Viewing Philadelphia centre from a horse and carriage, one of many on offer for hire. Note the cobbled street!

We became embroiled in a Gay Rights March, organised it appeared in support of the victims of the Orlando massacre a few days before. The police closed the whole city centre, so it proved almost impossible to find anywhere to park! The parade passed up and down the streets in which the main historical buildings are situated (this photo is of Market Street, the main street in the city) and the whole area was swarming with countless thousands of people! After taking the few photos below, we went back to the car and beat a hasty retreat out of town!

Independence Hall, now dwarfed by more modern buildings, is where both the  Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were debated and adopted.

The Clock Tower of Independence Hall.

The Religious Liberty statue, outside the National Museum of American Jewish History, shows a woman, symbolising liberty, shielding a boy with a lamp, representing religious faith. On the opposite side of the woman, is a carved eagle crushing a snake, a classic symbol of American democracy and representing the country's struggle against intolerance.

B'nai B'rith, a Jewish human-rights advocacy group founded in 1843, commissioned the sculpture and gave it to the American people for the Centennial celebration in Philadelphia in 1876.



The American Civil War was effectively ended in June 1863 at the Battle of Gettysburg, after which General Lee of the Confederate Army (the South) surrendered  to the Union (the North). It was estimated over 25,000 men were killed on each side in this battle alone.This giant mural depicts the first few words of the closing paragraph of President Lincoln's subsequent "Gettysburg address". The entire closing paragraph of Lincoln's famously concise 273 word speech, for those unfamiliar with it, was delivered at the inauguration of the Gettysburg National Cemetery in late 1863 and is worth restating.


"With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations."


The Benjamin Franklin Bridge – originally named the Delaware River Bridge, and now informally called the Ben Franklin Bridge – is a suspension bridge across the Delaware River connecting Philadelphia in Pennsylvania, and Camden in New Jersey.

The Philadelphia Eagles are a professional American football (as opposed to soccer!) franchise based in Philadelphia. This is their very grand stadium, the size reflecting the enormous popularity of the game in the USA.



Also see my daily diary HERE


and My Life Before Charente (updated 09 April 2016)  I will get back to this eventually!

34 comments:

  1. Lovely photos and the mural is wonderful!

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    1. Thanks Linda, I love wall murals that are well done and this one was good. Lucky we saw it in our rushed visit! Keep well Diane

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  2. You got some great photos Diane. It does look hot there though. I hope it isn't too hot to enjoy. I don't blame you for beating a hasty retreat from town with the demonstration going on. You never know what happens with tempers rising south of the border. Do enjoy your travels and do stay safe.

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    1. Penny we both hate crowds of any sort so it was not a good day for us to visit, at least we saw a little bit before we left. The plan of going on Sunday backfired, we thought with on Sunday it would be quieter than a weekday! It was not too hot on the East Coast, it was though when we reached Nevada! I hope that you are well Diane

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  3. What an interesting place. Shame you couldn't have seen more, maybeba trip for another time :)

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    1. I doubt it Kerry, I don't think we will be going back there. Another long trip if it ever happens would probably be to RSA. See you soon Diane

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  4. Hi Diane - great to see the photos ... while I can understand you beating a hasty retreat from the crowds - I too keep as far away as I can. I imagine Philadelphia has some really interesting museums and art galleries too - apart from the early historical aspects in the city ... great to see - cheers Hilary

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    1. Hilary the East Coast is a long story, but many things changed just before we left so we were not prepared for visiting places on our own. We did not have time to make plans and sort out what we could see. The whole town though was noisy and far too many people for us, we presume the whole day had been arranged at the very last minute so we would not have been aware of the circumstances anyway. One of those things! Take care Diane

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  5. May I be so bold as to suggest that a few people in the US need to read the top of that wall mural and have a bit of a think!

    Nice post.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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    1. Thanks Stewart, a lot of people world wide could do with reading this! Keep well Diane

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  6. Lovely photos, and interesting read.

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    1. Thanks Vera hope all is well down there Diane

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  7. It looks like you got to see the central part of the city, and that's good, anyway. The Ben Franklin Bridge is free passing from Philly into New Jersey, but you have to pay $5 to leave New Jersey. We always joke that it's to keep everyone from just leaving New Jersey. The crowds in Philly are usually pretty friendly, but I'm not a fan of crowds, either, and I never want to find out what is going to happen at a protest march anywhere. I'm glad you got to see a little of my part of the world, and, yes, even 90 degrees here is nothing compared to Nevada!

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    1. At least we did see some of it but it was not the ideal day for being a tourist!!! Nevada was steaming!!! Hope all is well Diane

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  8. It's a great historical city to visit, Diane, but too bad about the turmoil during your visit. It's a crazy time in our country now and you were wise to move on. Happy sightseeing!

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    1. Thanks Pam. I have never liked crowds but in this day and age even less!! We did see a bit of the city though. Take care Diane

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  9. These are lovely pictures Diane, thanks by sharing :)

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    1. Thanks Gloria, so much more still to come! Have a good day Diane

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  10. Hello Diane,
    It must have been a great trip... Was it your first visit to the US?
    Funny how I would flee now from large cities like Philly and propect the surrounding nature!!
    Lovely series of photos!
    Warm hugs and keep weep :)

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    1. Yes first visit. We do not like cities very much and when it is overrun by crowds of people even less!! Stay well, hugs Diane

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  11. You had an interesting time in Philadelphia. I loved the old town best. There was scaffolding on Independence Hall so you were lucky to get such a good shot.

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    1. We really did not get to see very much but glad we missed the scaffolding :) Take care t'other Diane

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  12. This and your last post have been beautifully crafted, Diane. I'm looking forward to the subsequent installments - and wondering how many there will be!!!

    That Gettysburg address makes you realise what a great man Lincoln was. If only all would-be Pesidents of the USA had such wisdom, I'd have more hope for the future of that country, and the world!!

    Best wishes - - Richard

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    1. Thanks so much Richard for the kind compliment, there will be quite a lot once I get through the many, many photos me thinks!!! :-) Would be presidents, scary thought at the moment!!! Keep well Diane

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  13. Karroo, did you mention Karroo???
    When are we going?? LOL!
    Seriously, if you have an opportunity, I'll be gladly part of the trip !!!!
    Enjoy your day, Diane :)

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    1. LOL, if it was only me I would say book now :-)

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  14. Hi, I thought we were the only Zimbabweans in the Charente. I was born in Salisbury in 62, left Zim in 1990, 8 years in the UK and now 13 years near Angouleme. Great blog, stumbled upon it doing a google search for images of Angouleme
    Regards, Stew

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    1. Hi Stew, it would be great to meet up sometime. I discovered that a girl I was at school with in Sby lived further South a couple of years back, its a small world. Did you see My Life Before the Charente? You can always contact me at dpsfrance @ gmail.com if you like. Thanks for the comment much appreciated Diane

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  15. Super post...you had a lovely time, didn't you!

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    1. Thanks Fly, we enjoyed ourselves more and more as time went on! Hope you are both well. Diane

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  16. Glad you got to see some of the city. Seems you know more about American History now than I do.

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    1. Ha ha, amazing what you find our about when one takes photos!!! Keep well Diane

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