Historic Germantown is a partnership of 19 extraordinary historic houses, destinations, and museums in Northwest Philadelphia that have joined together to protect, preserve, and share some of Philadelphia’s prized historical assets. Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Historic Germantown, located just minutes from Center City, is where one of Philadelphia’s Revolutionary War Battles was fought; where the first-ever American protest against slavery was written; and where one of the few remaining houses on the Underground Railroad still stands.

Vision

Historic Germantown will be a leader in enhancing the economic and cultural development of our community through the collective voice of its member sites.

Mission

Historic Germantown is a partnership organization serving historic sites in Philadelphia’s Old German Township that works collaboratively to preserve its extraordinary historic assets, increase access, interpret them to the public and raise their visibility.

Chosen Impact

As a collective, we work for and with our neighbors to build pride of place, community wellness and positive economic growth, from Fairhill to Chestnut Hill.

Guiding Values

A culture of belonging: Intentionally build inclusive and welcoming spaces through the stories told, programs offered and connections fostered at our member sites.

A culture of collaboration: Encourage collaborative leadership and decision-making. Cultivate community and unity of purpose amongst our member sites.

A culture of integrity: Find the untold stories. Amplify the undertold stories. Tell whole stories, accurate stories. Be authentic.

A culture of justice:Defend and promote the innate value of all in the community. Include and empower community voices. Repair the harm of unbalanced power.

A culture of preservation: Prevent community erasure by stewarding and supporting the continued existence of the material culture of the German Township and adjoining areas.

Our Practice

Germantown material culture, its history, and its remains, are the core of our work, yet we know that history work is not intrinsically or inevitably impactful for communities. We engage in relationship-building and partnership, seeking the involvement of those historically excluded, and in turn, unifying and strengthening our community.

We work to stimulate visitors’ natural curiosity in our history and how it is relevant to improving our lives today. We build a community of learning – increasing the capacity of our audiences to engage more deliberately in ways that attend to and do not reinforce inequalities and privilege. We work with research institutions, colleges and universities, and libraries in our region to expand knowledge of local and American history in an ever truer, ever more accurate manner.

We build recognition of our member sites in the local, regional and national development of our country and work with residents, visitors, funders, and elected officials to grow appreciation for the dynamic diversity and power of German Township.

HG Annual Report 2021

HG Annual Report 2020

HG Annual Report 2019

Support provided by

Funding for our organization is supported in part by a grant from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Staff

Elise D’Avella
Science Sleuths Program Coordinator, Development Assistant, & Museum Guide
elise@freedomsbackyard.com

Tuomi Joshua Forrest
Executive Director
director@freedomsbackyard.com

Gigi McGraw
Community Engagement Manager
gmcgraw@freedomsbackyard.com

Caitlin Mongan
Manager of Operations and Partnerships
programs@freedomsbackyard.com

Caroline Slama
Manager of Archives & Collections
library@germantownhistory.org

Stacey Swigert
Communications Manager
sas@freedomsbackyard.com

Stephanye Watts
Community Engagement Manager
Stephanye.watts@stenton.org

Heather Zimmerman
Program Director
hzimmerman@freedomsbackyard.com

Historic Germantown 2024 Board

Carolyn Adams
President

Kathleen Lee
Vice President

Mark Sellers
Treasurer

Dwayne Grannum
Secretary

Zarah Adams
Patricia Bass
Joan Countryman
James Earl Davis
Supreme Divine-Dow
Laura Fox
Kevin Hawkins
John Kromer
Timothy Lieb
Norman S. Marcus
Ruth Marino
Amy Ricci
Dora L. Rogers
Bethany Wiggin