From Weccacoe to South Philadelphia: The Changing Face of a Neighborhood

Neighborhoods Overview
The Changing Face of a Neighborhood

Oscar Hankinson, a lifelong South Philadelphian born in 1933 recalls: “I was born on 5th & Ellsworth…We moved to Carpenter Street, which is about a block and a half away, when I was twelve years old…that block and a half was like moving a world away.” Hankinson’s movement between two “worlds” suggests how Philadelphia’s neighborhoods—rich in history and culture, recognizable and distinct—are more complex than they may appear at first glance. Three centuries of history is written in the landscape itself; in the streets, in the vernacular buildings, the churches, in the things made here, and in the visible and …

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