Created By: Taylor & Francis Group
Elfreth's Alley is the nation's oldest residential street. Elfreth’s Alley was not included in original plans for Philadelphia, but as Philadelphia became a bustling city, artisans and merchants purchased or rented property close to the ports where goods and materials arrived. This led to overcrowding, and landowners recognized that tradesmen needed alternate routes to the river. Landowners Arthur Wells and John Gilbert combined their properties between Front and Second Streets to open Elfreth’sAlley, named after silversmith Jeremiah Elfreth, as a cart path in 1706.
For more than 70 years, Elfreth's Alley has celebrated "Fête Day" in early June, which celebrates the Alley's diverse ethnic heritage.Residents open their private homes to the public, and are accompanied by historical reenactments and festivities. For about 10 years, Elfreth's Alley has held "Deck the Alley," an annual self-guided tour of 13 private homes festooned with Christmas and holiday decorations, and also includes caroling.
This point of interest is part of the tour: Philadelphia 2019 WTW Tour