At Neumann: Historian Highlights William Penn Successes

The William Penn statue on top of Philadelphia City Hall
Image via iStock.

Delaware County native and historian Jim Murphy will present a program, “The Amazing Success of William Penn” Thursday, Sept. 8, 1:30 p.m., at the Meagher Theatre at Neumann University.

The presentation will explain how William Penn turned a “howling wilderness” into America’s fastest-growing city while living in Philadelphia for less than four years.

Murphy will reveal what Philadelphia street name swept across the country; what local site was the second most visited tourist spot in the U.S. after Niagara Falls, and what claim to fame City Hall has over a famous British landmark.

Jim Murphy is committed to making history fun and believes that audiences leave his program with a much better appreciation for William Penn and his city of Brotherly Love than they had when they arrived.

He is a certified Philadelphia tour guide and an author of more than 60 articles on historic Philly sites. Temple University Press published his book Real Philly History, Real Fast in June 2021.

He also spearheaded William Penn birthday celebrations at Welcome Park and City Hall, and he guided several 12-hour Great River-to-River Tours conducted by the Association of Philadelphia Tour Guides.

In addition, Murphy updated the association’s 265-page handbook and served on its board for four years.

A resident of Delaware County for most of his life, Murphy moved to Center City Philadelphia in 2008 where he claims that he “enjoys the luxury of occasionally sipping breakfast coffee behind Independence Hall while learning from our nation’s founders by osmosis.”

The event is sponsored by the Cultural Arts Forum at Neumann University. The Forum hosts a lecture series, workshops, and author presentations to enrich the educational experiences of the university and the community.

Admission is $10, and proceeds support the Dr. Margaret Mary Kearney student scholarship fund, which assists non-traditional students at Neumann.

See the full schedule of 2022-23 Cultural Arts Forum events.

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