April 6 – “Where’s the Creek?” Bus Tour: Uncovering the History of Mill Creek in West Philadelphia

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Date And Time

Sat, April 6, 2019

10:30 AM – 1:30 PM EDT


Wynnefield Library
5325 Overbrook Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19131

Event Description

Mill Creek can be found on 19th century maps of Philadelphia, draining more than 4,000 acres of West Philadelphia with its main stem and several tributaries. While some of the place names associated with this stream still exist — including the Overbrook and Mill Creek neighborhoods — the stream itself was long ago obliterated within the city limits.

What happened to Mill Creek? To find out, join Adam Levine of the Philadelphia Water Department on a bus tour that will explore the history of the old creek. From the headwaters of the creek, still above ground in MontgomeryCounty, we’ll travel through West Philadelphia from Overbrook to the SchuylkillRiver near 43rd Street. Along the way we’ll reveal stories about the creek, the industry and farmland that used to be here, visit parks and playgrounds and community gardens, and talk about some of the consequences of burying a creek in a pipe and building a city above it.

Each participant will receive an illustrated booklet highlighting the creek’s past and present, as well as a map showing where the stream once ran.

Bus will leave from and return to Wynnefield Library, 5325 Overbrook Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19131. Tour will be held rain or shine. Snacks and drinks will not be provided, but attendees may bring their own.

Since 1998 Adam Levine has been researching the history of Philadelphia’s waterways and sewers for the Philadelphia Water Department. He is also the author of five books on gardening, and is currently editor of GROW, the magazine of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society.

This bus tour is presented in conjunction with the exhibition Philadelphia: The Changing City, on view now through April 13th at Parkway Central Library.

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