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Independence Hall Now on Main Street


The next time you are visiting the SAR Genealogical Research Library, be sure to check out the Independence Hall diorama in the front window.  Formerly in the SAR Headquarters building on 4th Street, the diorama has been repurposed for the Main Street front window.  Now the thousands of visitors that walk along Museum Row can be educated about one of our nation’s most historic buildings.  In the future, Museum Row visitors can expect informative window displays that highlight the SAR and the Revolutionary War time period.


The State House, or Independence Hall as it is known today, was built between 1732 and 1751 as the Colonial Legislature for the Province of Pennsylvania. Between these historic walls, both the U.S. Declaration of Independence and Constitution were debated and adopted. It was the principal meeting place of the second Continental Congress from 1775 to 1783, and site of the Constitutional Convention in 1787. During the Revolutionary war, Independence Hall was used by the British as a prison and a hospital.


The red brick building was designed by Edmund Woolley and Alexander Hamilton in the Gregorian style, consisting of a central building with a bell tower and steeple, flanked by two smaller wings via arcaded hyphens. A connecting tower to the south center of the building was erected in 1750. It was in this tower that the Liberty Bell was originally installed. The tower was rebuilt in 1828.


This scale model was constructed by the donors, Dr. Everett H. Sanneman and his wife, Elizabeth, in 1989. The original concept was developed by Pennsylvania Compatriot Gene Krebs.