The local Host Committee for the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, which runs from July 25 to July 28, consciously draws on the city’s key role in prior American political events in using the tagline “Lets Make History Again” as part of its marketing campaign. DNC week also offers a chance for both conventioneers and the general public to learn about American political history through a series of seven exhibits around Philadelphia collectively called PoliticalFest, which run from July 22 to July 27.
Although I did not realize it at the time, my first public history ‘gig’ was my high school summer job giving tours of Lucy the Elephant, a national historic landmark in Margate that was built in 1881 to draw potential land buyers to what was then the sparsely populated borough of ‘South Atlantic City.’ At that point the belly of the beast resembled a small gallery displaying a range of local historical artifacts, including a horse-drawn firehose cart, which were soon removed to the just opened Margate Historical Society Museum where they stayed on exhibit until the building itself was damaged by Hurricane Sandy.
My wife’s idea of a good date night does not usually involve a visit to a tavern or a historic site. Her ideal date would involve a nice meal at an elegant restaurant and an entertaining show, and then ice cream, of course. Last month, I was able to accomplish her ideal Date Night: The Old Fashioned Way with a trip to the Half Way House Restaurant and Swift Creek Mill Theatre in Chesterfield County, Virginia.