Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Betsy Ross House

Betsy Ross, a fourth-generation American born in 1752, is credited with making the first American Flag.  You can read her biography here.

When we went to Philadelphia we saw a lot of historical buildings, one of which was the Betsy Ross House.   As you walk into the courtyard the actual house is on the right-hand side.  

I read the following online.  "The house was built 250 years ago.  The front portion was built around 1740, with the stair hall (paizza) and the rear section added 10 to 20 years later.  It served as both a business and  residence for many different shopkeepers and artisans for more than 150 years; shopkeeper, an apothecary and Betsy Ross, the legendary upholsterer.  Betsy and her husband John occupied the house from 1773 until 1786."

The courtyard is lovely and I liked the fountain graced with two cats.  

It was made from bronze in 1973 by Philadelphia Sculptor Henry Mitchell (1915-1980).

Surrounding the fountain are 13 truncated triangular stones a few inches high, and written on the side of each triangle is the name of one of the original 13 colonies.  (To illustrate this I found the following photo online.)

Betsy's grave site is in the courtyard on the opposite side from the house.

We were only allowed to take photographs in the upholstery room.  I got the following photographs online, which I made into a collage.   You can enlarge if you want to get more details.

The next four photographs I took in the upholstery room.

While walking around there were photos of various famous people who had visited over the years.  A few were, Ronald Reagan, Michelle Obama, Basil Rathbone (my favorite Sherlock Holmes of all time), Roy Rogers, Vanna White (from Wheel of Fortune), and the Ghost Hunter guys, Jason, Grant and their team, who filmed one of their shows here.   No, I did not notice any shadowy figures during our tour!

There is a very nice Museum Shop which has all kinds of neat things to purchase.  You can see what I treated myself to at the bottom of this post.  

The following photo of the front of the house is one I also found online. 

And just as I said  to myself that I wasn't going to add any more Teddy Bears to my collection, when I was in the museum shop this one jumped out at me.  

Not sure why I didn't get a Betsy Ross Teddy Bear.  I'm thinking now that they wouldn't have had one, though I did see other lookalikes as you may have noticed in the shop photographs, but they weren't Teddy Bears and so......

Hello again Ben!  Welcome to our humble abode.


  1. That had to be a great place to visit. Thanks for the tour.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  2. the cats in the courtyard are interesting. :) i like memorializing the 13 colonies there, since that was what she knew. :)

  3. great tour, Denise! Lovely shots!

  4. I enjoyed that visit. I like Ben. I have a teddy bear of my own. What am I like!

  5. Awesome photos and post ! Thanks for taking us with you it was fun. never been there but ya made me feel like I had ! Have a great day !

  6. What an informative post. Well done. I know little about American history, but don't mind reading a post like this one.
    Good work!
    Greetings from Cottage Country Ontario, Canada!

  7. Hi Denise, thanks for sharing your tour of the Betsy Ross House. Great info and post. Have a great weekend!

  8. I really like that fountain-but I'm a cat lover so I would. Interesting place and what a lot to see. Sue

  9. I love going through old historic houses like this. Great tour that you gave us.

  10. I like Ben, lots of fun things to see.

  11. You find some really interesting places to visit... and buy teddy bears from. Thanks for sharing another slice of American history. I enjoy reading about all the different places.

  12. wonderful place, I would love to visit there someday... and the fountain graced with two adorable cats is my favorite shot today, but all pictures are beautiful.
    Happy weekend

  13. Thank you my friends. I'm happy you liked my post on Betsy Ross. I enjoyed learning more about her.

  14. Thanks for sharing some of Betsy with us... There are so few important people named BETSY... Guess that is why I'm drawn to her!!!! Great set of photos.
    Have a great weekend.

  15. This is so much fun! I do love going to see historical places. I've never been to Betsy Ross' house. Your photos are fantastic!

  16. I love the cat fountain...but then again I would!

  17. Always a pleasure to meet a Sherlockian :)

    Basil Rathbone was a great Sherlock Holmes. He is one of my favorites as well.