America’s Icon of Freedom: The Liberty Bell
Erected in 1773 by the Carpenters’ Company of Philadelphia, a trade guild, the building was intended to demonstrate craft and house their meetings. In the fall of 1774, it hosted the First Continental Congress, convened to deliberate on a response to the British blockade of Boston. Here, after some controversial debate, its delegates called upon the Rev. Jacob Duché, assistant rector of Christ Church, to lead them in prayer. Later John Adams raved about the prayer to his wife Abigail, “I have never heard a better prayer, or one so well-pronounced.”
Philadelphia, the capital of William Penn’s “holy experiment” in freedom, was to be guided by brotherly love. It hasn’t always lived up to its founder’s vision, but its universal ideals of liberty and love helped it become blueprint for the United States and a World Heritage City.
Discover Philadelphia’s hidden history and how faith has guided liberty toward justice with our curated ecosystem of trails that explore the city’s must-see sites!