The City’s Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy present William Penn at 375 – His Life and Legacy, an exhibition curated by retired City Hall Director of Tours, Greta Greenberger. The exhibition features prints, reproductions, paintings, books, newspapers, and souvenir memorabilia that celebrate Pennsylvania’s founder for his significant contributions and influence.
William Penn was an English Quaker leader and advocate of religious freedom, who oversaw the founding of the American Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as a refuge for Quakers and other religious minorities of Europe, including French Protestant Huguenots, Mennonites, Amish, and Lutherans from Catholic German states. This “Holy Experiment” was a result of a charter from King Charles II who repaid his debt to Penn’s father, the late Royal Admiral of the British Navy, by providing his son 45,000 square miles for a colony in America.
This showcase remembers Penn’s many contributions, including his treaty with the Leni Lenape Indians, his founding and plan for the city of Philadelphia, and his Charter of Privileges (Liberties) of 1701 and other frameworks which would later form the basis of the US Constitution.
“It has been my passion along with Elaine Peden to collect images of William Penn that depict his significant accomplishments and contributions. We celebrate his legacy as a symbol for peace, respect for diversity for all peoples, and religious and spiritual freedoms.”
Contributors to this showcase include: The Philadelphia Print Shop, City Hall Tour and Visitor’s Center, and the personal collections of Greta Greenberger, Dr. Russ Harris, Carris Kocher, Edward Mauger and Elaine Peden.