Real Estate

The Rich History of Washington Square

Right in the heart of the city of Philadelphia is the Washington Square. This 6.4-acre park is considered to be a part of the Society Hill neighborhood, whose ownership and management was passed on from the city to the National Park Service since 2005. With the rich history of the park that dates back to the pre-revolutionary war, Washington Square is included in the Independence National Historical Park.


Washington Square in the 18th Century

During this time, Washington Square was used by the African-American community for animal grazing and burials. In the Revolutionary War, it became the burial place of troops and citizens from the Colonial army. Following the war, the square was used to bury the victims of the city’s yellow fever epidemics, as well as for cattle markets and camp meetings. It is believed that spirits haunt this park.

In 1815, an improvement effort was started as the neighborhood surrounding the square become more developed and affluent. It was named Washington Square in 1825 as a tribute to George Washington, and a monument was proposed. However, this monument was never built, although it served as the seed for the tribute to the soldiers of the Revolutionary War.

The Clinton Street Historic District

A national historic district, this Washington Square West neighborhood has 71 brick houses built between 1832 and 1850. These houses are 3 ½ to 4 stories tall and consist of front and back buildings. In the late 19th century, Washington Square West was the most fashionable residential section of Philadelphia, and was home to notable figures like Addison Hutton, Agnes Repplier and Rt. Rev. William Bacon Stevens. In 1972, the Clinton Street Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places.


The Portico Row

This is a set of 16 historic rowhouses built anywhere between 1831 and 1832. These brick houses were designed by popular Philadelphia architect Thomes Ustick Walter. Featuring Greek revival style, the houses feature what is now the standard Philadelphia rowhouse plan with a piazza, as well as a front and back building. In 1977, Portico Row was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Other Historical Tidbits

In 1793, Jean Pierre Blanchard ascended in a hot air balloon from the Walnut Street Jail. This is the first hot air balloon flight from the square. A tree planting program started in 1816 as part of the beautification project which resulted in an atboretum of more than 60 varieties of rare trees. A sycamore moon tree was planted in the Washing Square in 1975, whose seeds were carried to the moon on the Apollo 14 mission by astronaut Stuart Roosa.

If you want to live in such historic place and buy a new home in Washington Square, search real estate in Philadelphia using the various real estate search engines designed by the realty companies in Philly servicing these neighborhoods. You should find luxury condos in Philadelphia near Washington Square as well. If you want to sell my house fast, it would be best that you do so online, especially that this route is now considered as the fastest way to market your home.

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