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New Hope Historical Society tour traces Parry family footsteps in Philadelphia


Benjamin Parry, the “Father of New Hope,” was born in Upper Moreland Township in 1757 when it was part of Philadelphia.

After becoming a major force in the industrial development of New Hope, Parry continued operating a flour exporting business in the city. It was located on Strawberry Alley, just one block from Benjamin Franklin’s house and just steps away from the new Museum of the American Revolution.

Oliver Parry, Benjamin’s son, was a pioneer in the development of Philadelphia’s expansion westward in the mid-19th century in the historic Spring Garden neighborhood.

On June 13, the New Hope Historical Society will present a tour of Philadelphia that will trace the Parry family in the city. The tour will begin with a visit to the new Museum of the American Revolution that includes the greatest collection of Revolutionary War artifacts, among them General George Washington’s tent.

After a luncheon at a classic Tuscan Grille in Old City, guests will visit a monument to the Old York Road where the historic route terminated in Philadelphia. Then, the group will tour the Arch Street Friends Meetinghouse where the Parrys worshiped in Philadelphia, and visit the burial grounds, the final resting place of Jane Paxson Parry.

A stroll along Arch Street, the most prominent Quaker street in Old City, past the Betsy Ross House, will continue to Market Street and the home of Benjamin Franklin. Then, the tour will head one block east to the site of Benjamin Parry’s flour exporting warehouse.

The tour bus will head over to the Spring Garden neighborhood where Benjamin’s son, Oliver Parry, built more than 300 homes. Guests will see some of those gorgeous homes that still line Green Street and Mount Vernon Street. Wine and snacks will be served as the tour travels back to New Hope.

The tour bus leaves promptly from the Delray Shopping Center in New Hope at 8:30 a.m., when guests will be served coffee and pastries. The bus will return around 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $125 and include all museum fees, luncheon and refreshments. The Coach Tour will be hosted by author and Historical Society board member Roy Ziegler.