Elfreth’s Alley

This article is presented to you by the adoption agency in Philadelphia from Adoptions From The Heart. Whether you’re a visitor or a local Philadelphian, if you have yet to visit Elfreth’s Alley, now is the time to do so.

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Elfreth’s Alley has made its name as the nation’s oldest continuously occupied residential street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Alley was named after Jeremiah Elfreth, a property owner and well-known blacksmith around the craftsman and merchants in the 18th century.

Fast-forward to 300 years later, the miniature-sized cobblestone alley remains lined with 32 houses and is a designated National Historic Landmark. Amongst the 32 homes, two now act as a museum and gift shop for visitors to explore.


In the 18th century, Philadelphia was up and coming as a lively city where artisans flocked to purchase a property close to the water. Interestingly, Elfreth’s Alley was originally not a part of the city’s residential layout in Philadelphia.

Because of the high-demand residential value, the city experienced over-crowding and difficulty traveling to and from the port. Arthur Wells and John Gilbert made the decision to open a route between their properties that today is known as Elfreth’s Alley.

Today, according to the historical marker designated in 2016, Elfreth’s Alley is an “exceptional example of early American structures built between 1720 and 1830.” The alley is now a vibrant suburban neighborhood, home to designers and artisans, educators and developers, and all in between.


The Elfreth’s Alley Museum is located in house 124 and 126, where guests can peek into America’s working class. If you’re interested in visiting the museum, visit their site for more information on tickets, dates, and times for the season.

For more local museums to visit, check out our next article.

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Adoptions From The Heart has helped build over 6,200 beautiful families since 1985. We offer prospective adoptive parents, pregnant women, and their children a variety of services. Contact our adoption agency in Philadelphia to learn more.