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Francisville

    • Giles

Streetviews: Q&A with Francisville NDC's Penelope Giles

When Penelope Giles grew up in Francisville it was a bustling, middle-class neighborhood. Since she moved home to Francisville 15 years ago Giles has worked to turn the neighborhood back into…

    • 1501-1505 Fairmount Ave. / Ben Leech

Historical Commission approves designation for art deco garage

The Historical Commission Friday agreed with the recommendation made by its Committee on Historic Designation that an art deco garage on Fairmount Avenue be designated historic. The 85-year-old structure, designed by…

    • Abandoned tax delinquent property on the 2300 block of Gerrit Street in Point Breeze (Clem Murray / Inquirer)

District Council members assign targets for affordable housing

Five members of City Council introduced bills on Thursday designating certain portions of their districts as “opportunity zones,” areas that will be targeted by Council President Darrell Clarke’s 1,500 Affordable Housing…

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ABOUT FRANCISVILLE

Francisville, once home to William Penn’s personal vineyard, is a neighborhood split between Central and Lower North Philadelphia. Bounded by Ridge Avenue to Francis Street and 19th Street to Girard Avenue, Francisville used to be home to “Springettsbury Manor," an estate sources say William Penn had planted grapes with the intent to make wine. Penn’s vineyard experiment was short lived because, by the time he returned to the area in 1699, the plants had died. Vineyard Street within Francisville pays tribute to Penn’s winery experiment. The earliest record of a settlement called “Francisville” is only in 1839, leading historians to believe that before the area was called Francisville, it was actually called “Vineyard," again referencing William Penn. Today Francisville is easily recognized from an aerial view because of its opposite street grid, in which the streets run East to West rather then North to South. This is because the neighborhood was built running perpendicular to Ridge Road, an ancient Native American trail. Today Ridge Road still exists as Ridge Avenue. In recent years the area has seen its fair share of crime and drug abuse, but groups like the Francisville CDC and the Concerned Citizens of Francisville continue to fight to preserve and celebrate the area’s rich history. 

RESOURCES

History of Francisville [pdf]


UPCOMING EVENTS IN FRANCISVILLE

There are no upcoming events in this neighborhood. Feel free to contact us with your contributions.

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