The central building is a reconstruction of what Franklin’s original home may have looked like and contains a fascinating museum exploring the many interests and accomplishments of the Founding Father who was a political leader, diplomat, inventor, scientist, printer, and much more. For those interested in American history, the interactive and audio exhibits here paint a detailed picture of Franklin and how he helped shaped his era and country. On either side of the central building are some of Franklin’s rental properties, including a printing office and bookbindery, a newspaper office where Franklin’s son was editor, and a post office. At the latter, where Franklin was once the city’s Postmaster General, you can get a letter or postcard postmarked: “The Benjamin Franklin Post Office.”
History-themed walking tours of Philadelphia typically include a stop at Franklin Court, offering visitors a rounded picture of U.S. history and Philadelphia’s many historically significant sites.
Things to know before you go
- Franklin Court is a site important to the founding of the U.S. History buffs will love it.
- Admission is free.
- Franklin Court is wheelchair-accessible and service animals are welcome.
How to get there
Franklin Court is in the center of Philadelphia, just steps from such historic sites as the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. Located between Market and Chestnut Streets, and 3rd and 4th Streets, visitors can enter through the gates and up the cobblestone path from Chestnut Street, or through the original brick passageway on Market Street.
When to get there
The site is open throughout the year—usually from morning until dusk. Typically it is at its busiest during school holidays and on weekends; avoid those times—or try to arrive just after opening—to beat the crowds.
Several landmark locations are within a short walking distance from Franklin Court, making it easy to round out your historic experience by adding on visits to Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were signed; Betsy Ross House, where the seamstress lived when she sewed the first American flag, and Declaration House, where Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence.
- Carpenters' Hall
- Arch Street Meeting House
- Museum of the American Revolution
- New Hall Military Museum
- National Museum of American Jewish History (NMAJH)
- Independence National Historical Park
- Betsy Ross House
- Second Bank of the United States
- National Liberty Museum
- Christ Church
- Dolley Todd House
- Library Hall (American Philosophical Society Museum)
- Benjamin Franklin’s Grave
- Independence Mall
- Independence Visitor Center