The Elfreth's Alley Museum

The Elfreth's Alley Museum is located in Houses 124 and 126, built in 1755 by the Alley's namesake, Jeremiah Elfreth. The Museum house (126) has been restored and furnished to its c.1790 appearance, when it was the home of two female mantua makers.

The Museum is the only buildings on Elfreth's Alley that is accessible to the public. The other homes on the Alley are private residences; please respect the residents' privacy and property.

Tours of the Museum give visitors a look at how daily life for working people changed over the last 300 years by asking questions such as:

  • Why were alleys and sidestreets built and who built them?
  • How did middle class people live and work in the 18th century?
  • How have individuals and families changed their houses over time to suit their needs?
  • How did work and family life change during the American Industrial Revolution?
  • How did immigration change neighborhoods in the early 20th century?

Current and past exhibits

The Irish and Elfreth's Alley in 1900

Elfreth's Alley housed many immigrants and their families during the last century and a half.  Here, immigrants found affordable housing and work in the heart of Philadelphia's commercial district.