Golden Age of Retail Holiday Tour

December 02, 2017 @ 1PM - 3PM

Gimbels Thanksgiving Day Parade…Strawbridge & Clothier’s Corinthian Room Restaurant…Blum’s window displays…Wanamaker’s Light Show and Rocket Express…

Revisit the enchantment and resplendence of downtown, brick-and-mortar retail on this special holiday tour co-presented by the Preservation Alliance and the Philadelphia History Museum. Guides Eileen Lewis and Andrew Dibb will share the architectural history of Philadelphia’s central commercial district and recount the tricks of the trade that the city’s visionary merchants once used to generate goodwill and foot traffic during the holiday shopping season.

While Philadelphia’s original “Big Five” department stores had all closed their doors by 2006, their legacy lives on in countless memories and traditions passed down from generation to generation. Learn the history of the rise and fall of Philadelphia’s great department and specialty stores, and see how Center City retail continues to adapt to new consumer demands.

If you were ever one to meet at the eagle or rub the boar’s nose, be sure to join us for this guided walk along Market and Chestnut Streets, and a trip down memory lane.

Arrive early at the Philadelphia History Museum to view the holiday pop-up exhibit of retailing artifacts and ephemera drawn from the museum’s Wanamaker’s and Gimbels collections.

Event Details:
Saturday, December 2, 2017
1:00 PM — Tour will depart from the steps of the Philadelphia History Museum, 15 S. 7th Street. Tour lasts approximately 2 hours.

Member, Preservation Alliance or Philadelphia History Museum | $15
General Ticket | $20
Children 10 and under, accompanied by an adult | Free


SPECIAL OFFER All tickets are HALF PRICE through Saturday, 12/2
Member, Preservation Alliance or Philadelphia History Museum | $7.50
General Ticket | $10


Questions? Season’s greetings? Please contact us at or 215-546-1146 ext. 4.