Independence Hall

1/26/2017 Independence Hall and the Surrounding Buildings

Independence Hall- National Park Service


Under heightened security due to President Trump’s visit I had the opportunity to visit Independence Hall and to explore the museums that surround the area. Some of the interesting highlights from the day included the discussion of the museum created by Charles Peale. This was one of the first museums in the United States. By viewing this museum with an understanding of Peale one can understand how he appealed to the statesmen that were serving in Independence Hall. Much like his lifelike display of taxidermy birds discussed by Gary Kulik in his article entitled, “Designing the Past”, the world outside his museum is full of great men that are full of life.

Moving further down the Jewish Museum of History was discussed. Overall this museum struck me as a much more grand building mainly due to its height. Another aspect that seemed to make the building much more grand was the fact that the front of the building felt like one gigantic window. From listening to others description of the inside of the building it seemed like the museum was not as interactive as Peale’s museum originally was. One reason for this could be that the Jewish museum is used for reflection and memorial of history.

In contrast to this was the description of the Constitution Center which seemed to be much more interactive from the descriptions that others gave. The reason for this could be the fact the constitution is still impacting our lives today and is still discussed as if the document was alive in some ways.

What caught my attention the most was how the lawn in front of Independence Hall used to be full of warehouses and other buildings and how it was cleared out during the 1950s. The reason for this clearing was because people thought the buildings were an eyesore and took away from Independence Hall. This shows another way that people wish to preserve even the aesthetic nature of founding moments. When standing right in front of Independence Hall one feels tiny and insignificant due to the size of the building. But, when standing back a few hundred feet it is easy to see that the buildings from the 19th century to the new skyscrapers behind Independence Hall tower over. Maybe this is a way to try to show all of the progressive America has made since its founding moments.


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