The exterior of the tiny Letitia House, erected in 1715 at Second and Chestnut Streets (and thought to once be the home of William Penn’s daughter Letitia) and moved to West Girard Avenue in Fairmount Park for the 1876 Centennial world’s fair, will be restored this year, according to Mark Focht, first deputy commissioner of the department of Parks and Recreation. The project, which is already underway, is funded by $600,000 from the City’s capital budget. The restoration also includes the installation of a geothermal heating and cooling system and clearing of the surrounding landscape to create a clearer viewshed to Girard Avenue and the Philadelphia Zoo and so that the house will feel better connected to the surrounding streetscape.
Once the restoration work is complete, says Focht, Parks and Recreation will find a tenant for the building.
Ryan Briggs contributed reporting to this article.
About the author
Nathaniel Popkin is the co-editor of the Hidden City Daily and co-producer and senior script editor of the documentary film series "Philadelphia: The Great Experiment." He's the author of Song of the City: An Intimate Portrait of the American Urban Landscape and The Possible City: Exercises in Dreaming Philadelphia.