Independence National Park, Philadelphia

I was told by the concierge that walking to Independence Square from the Marriott took only 8 minutes. Well, I didn’t time it, but I did walk east into the sunrise on Market Street.

Market Street is a main street in the downtown area and it is lined with stores like Ross, Staples and CVS. There are restaurants like the Hard Rock Café, Dunkin Donuts which is housed in the Pennsylvania Convention center. This facility covers one block. There was a Courthouse which I learned was the Bankruptcy Court. The street was alive with people, cars and the business of the day.

Independence Square appeared quickly and I found the Visitor Center. It is a very long building with exhibits but I didn’t have time today. I obtained my ticket for viewing Independence Hall, it was 8:30 a.m. You need to read the National Park website for information about how to obtain your tickets so you can see Independence Hall. I walked down passed the Liberty Bell Center taking photos. The park is very large with a huge lawn area spreading out between the buildings.
I passed through the security to Independence Hall and wandered around the courtyard behind it waiting for my tour at 9 a.m. Rangers were positioned at various locations keeping an eye on things. One of them pointed to a door instructing us to enter. We gathered in a room with chairs and a screen on one wall. We were told that the tour would begin in a few minutes.

A little after that announcement a very pleasant and friendly Ranger appeared and started chatting. I asked him how long the tour was and he told us “about 15 minutes.” He informed us that we could take as many pictures as we wanted. He gave us a little more detail and asked where we all came from. The other Ranger gave him the “all clear,” and sharply at 9 a.m. our guide said “follow me” and led us through a door on the right side of the screen. Apparently we were not going to see the usual short intro movie??

We entered into a hallway and to the right was the court room area. The Ranger went behind the wooden railing and started to tell us about the events that took place in this room. He pointed out where the prisoner stood and he said “innocent until proven guilty.”

Then he lead us into the room across and this is where the Declaration of Independence was signed. The delegates gathered here from the various colonies to argue and discuss the events and issues of the times. Once again the Ranger went behind the wooden barrier. This room was the scene where the delegates signed the Declaration of Independence. When the delegates signed the Declaration they all knew that it meant death. They were committing treason and if the new nation lost the war there would be serious repercussions. Later they would sign the Articles of Confederation in this same room.

After this simple but sweet visit to Independence Hall, I decided to try the Liberty Bell. It is housed in this very long building filled with exhibits, but I blazed past them to see the bell. It was there at the end of the building suspended in this round room with windows from ceiling to floor. I was told the wood at the top was Elm and they had dated it to around 1700. I had a nice talk with the Ranger. He was surprised that I was able to view it alone for that didn’t happen to often. I tried to get the crack to appear in my photos.

I am a very content Patriot….
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About BJ MacDonald

Interested in travel, really into genealogy and researching my family history, classic novels and movies, fantasy and science fiction, photography, history and more... Here is a tip. Make sure you are commenting on the blog you were visiting and the post you were interested in. My blogs are listed by hovering over my pictures and clicking. Clicking one of them will take you back to the correct blog. You can try me here: bjmcdonell@gmail.com
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