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Registration for Programs

WORKSHOP: Grandparent’s Day: Exploring Books-Telling Your Story with Mary Elizabeth Nelson

Saturday, September 12, 2015, 1:00-3:00 PM

Creating a book means thinking about reading or visually telling a story with pictures. Students will be encouraged to explore what a book is and what it does and what it might do. Students will learn some basic bookbinding techniques such as folding and gluing to create their own special book.  Co-Sponsored by the Philadelphia Center for the Book.

Free for children accompanied by grandparents (or parents), but reservations are required and space is limited. RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

TOUR: “Lovers of Learning: The Athenaeum and Laurel Hill Cemetery" A Tour of Laurel Hill Cemetery with an emphasis on Athenaeum members, led by Athenaeum member and Laurel Hill volunteer Kerry Bryan.

Sunday, September 13, 2015, 2:00-4:00 PM

The Athenaeum has many connections to Laurel Hill Cemetery, including architect John Notman, who designed the Cemetery’s layout, gatehouse, superintendent’s house, and chapel. Furthermore, many early Athenaeum members were interred there. Laurel Hill Cemetery, like the Athenaeum itself, is closely tied to Philadelphia history and, like the Athenaeum’s own building, was an innovative effort, featuring a picturesque setting in contrast to the crowded and sometimes disorganized older burial grounds in the city. Today the 78-acre tract is a National Historic Landmark. Light refreshments served. $12.00 registration fee.

Drive yourself and park in the lot across Ridge Avenue from the cemetery. Laurel Hill Cemetery’s main entrance is located at 3822 Ridge Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19132. Need a ride? Contact the Athenaeum to arrange for carpooling and rides.

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Laurel Hill Tour

LECTURE: Vincent D. Feldman, City Abandoned: Charting the Loss of Civic Institutions in Philadelphia

Saturday, September 19, 2015, 1:30 PM

With the photographs in this book, Vincent Feldman offers Philadelphians a testament of who we were, who we are, and who we are likely to become. Some of his subjects have succumbed to neglect or demolition (the Ridge Avenue Farmers' Market, for example); some have been successfully rehabilitated to new uses (the Victory Building); while others remain in limbo in their ruined states—their futures far from secure.  Yet besides recording the current state of the buildings, Feldman's photographs can play an active role in their preservation and renovation. His photos can serve, not only as documentary records, but also as catalysts for the rescue and rehabilitation of some of Philadelphia's most significant and neglected "abandoned" city architecture.

Vincent D. Feldman, a lifelong resident of Philadelphia, has been photographing architecture and the urban landscape for three decades.  In the early 1990s his photography came to concentrate on the conflicts and questions that often surround historic buildings in Philadelphia. Feldman's photography helps uncover the stories attached to buildings, thus revealing the nature of the societies in which these structures were built—and then neglected.  Feldman received a Pew Fellowship in the Arts in 2001. His work is held in the Philadelphia Museum of Art and in museums and private collections internationally. He is a Master Lecturer in photography at the University of the Arts.

Book signing and light refreshments to follow.  Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

Qty Description Price
Feldman Program Non-Member

LECTURE: John L. Puckett and Mark Frazier Lloyd, Becoming Penn: The Pragmatic American University, 1950-2000

Wednesday, September 30, 2015, 5:30 PM

The University of Pennsylvania changed during the second half of the 20th century, both in size and status. Becoming Penn shares the interwoven history, university politics and urban policy which came into play during these years of change. Drawing upon both photographs and documents in the University Archives and from the City of Philadelphia, the authors enlighten the reader on this catalytic time in the University’s history which saw the presidencies of Martin Meyerson, Sheldon Hackney, and others.

John L. Puckett is Professor of Education in the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania and coauthor of Dewey’s Dream: Universities and Democracies in an Age of Education Reform. Mark Frazier Lloyd is Director of the University Archives and Records Center at the University of Pennsylvania.

Book signing and reception to follow.  Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

Qty Description Price
Lloyd/Puckett Program Non-Member

TOUR: “Behind the Scenes” at the Pennsylvania Hospital Library and Archives with Stacey C. Peeples, Curator-Lead Archivist, Pennsylvania Hospital.

Thursday, October 8, 2015, 12:30 PM

Ms. Peeples will bring out some rarely seen treasures for our small group. Meet at the Main Entrance to Pennsylvania Hospital on 8th Street. Free. Athenaeum Members only. Space is limited. RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

WORKSHOP: The Caterpillar Stitch with Denise Carbone

Saturday, October 10, 2015, 10:00 AM-5:00 PM

The bookbinding stitch named the caterpillar works structurally to bind the sections of a book together, but is also stunningly decorative, looking like an elegant centipede. This workshop taught by Denise Carbone, artist, conservator, bookbinder, author of Observations on the Caterpillar Stitch, will teach variations of the stitch. After beginning with a simple crisscross, the thread whips around a single sewing station in a helical movement, growing quickly. Each participant will create his or her own book. RSVP required, limited space. Please bring to the workshop: Ruler, Self healing cutting mat, pencil, scissors, Exacto knife and extra blades. $10 Material Fee, payable in advance.  Co-Sponsored by the Philadelphia Center for the Book.

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Caterpillar Workshop

Society Hill-Hot and Healthy!: Dr. Robert Norris, “How to Prevent Heart Attacks”

Tuesday, October 20, 2015, 2:30 PM

Society Hill- Hot and Healthy! is a free community-based medical speaker series created to empower people to make knowledgeable decisions about their health by providing up-to-date information promoting good health, well-being, and disease prevention.

Dr. Robert B. Norris received his medical degree from NYU Medical School. He did his Cardiology Fellowship at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and has been at Pennsylvania Hospital since 1990. Dr. Norris is Chief of the Department of Cardiology at Pennsylvania Hospital. His clinical interests include coronary artery disease, heart failure, and the treatment of high cholesterol. Free.  RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

LECTURE: Nancy G. Heller, John Singer Sargent and Flamenco: Reconsidering El Jaleo

Wednesday, October 21, 2015, 5:30 PM

John Singer Sargent was fascinated with Gypsy culture and particularly dance when he visited Spain. After his return he painted El Jaleo, a large-scale painting which hangs in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.

Nancy G. Heller is a professor of Modern & Contemporary Art History at the University of the Arts. Her most recent books are the 4th edition of Women Artists: An Illustrated History (Abbeville Press) and Why a Painting is Like a Pizza: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying Modern Art (Princeton University Press). She has studied and performed Spanish dance since the 1980s and was the American correspondent for Flamenco International Magazine. Dr. Heller earned her MA and Ph.D. at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. She will bring with her to this presentation a number of flamenco costumes and accessories, for attendees to examine.

Book signing and reception to follow.  Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

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Heller Program Non-Member

LECTURE: Steven B. Erisoty, “Preserving Philadelphia’s Artistic Heritage”

Saturday, October 24, 2015, 1:30 PM

Join conservator Steven B. Erisoty as he discusses the conservation of Philadelphia’s important paintings, including the Athenaeum’s portraits of Benjamin Carr and Edwin Forrest Durang.

Steven B. Erisoty earned his M.F.A. in Paintings Conservation from the Cooperstown Graduate Program, State University of New York. He has conducted surveys of paintings for the La Salle University Art Gallery, the F.D.R. Presidential Library, and the U.S. Military History Institute, among others. In Philadelphia he has also worked with many museums and libraries to conserve individual works of art, both easel paintings and murals.

Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

Qty Description Price
Erisoty Program Non-Member

LECTURE: Stephen Hague, The Gentleman’s House in the British Atlantic World

Wednesday, October 28, 2015, 5:30 PM

 The eighteenth-century Georgian mansion holds a fascination in both Britain and America. Between the late 17th century and 1780, compact classical houses developed as a distinct architectural type. From small country estates to provincial towns and their outskirts, ‘gentlemen’s houses’ proliferated in Britain and its American colonies.

Stephen Hague, the recipient of a Charles E. Peterson Fellowship in 2012, teaches modern European, British and British imperial history at Rowan University in New Jersey. Previously, he held the SAHGB Ernest Cook Trust Research Studentship at Oxford University, UK, and is a Supernumerary Fellow of Linacre College, Oxford. He has published essays on the intersection of social, cultural, and architectural history.

Book signing and reception to follow.  Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

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Hague Program Non-Member

LECTURE: Mark Reinberger and Elizabeth McLean, The Philadelphia Country House: Architecture and Landscape in Colonial America

Wednesday, November 4, 2015, 5:30 PM

In this magnificently illustrated volume, the authors treat the country houses that the urban gentry built on the outskirts of Philadelphia, reminding the reader that while British architecture was influential in style, the builders needed to respond as well to local economic and social needs – as well as fashion.

Mark Reinberger, the first scholar awarded a Peterson Fellowship in 1988, is now professor of architecture at the University of Georgia. Elizabeth McLean, long know for her research on historical landscape and gardens, is a research associate in botany at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University.

Book signing and reception to follow.  Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

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Reinberger-McLean Program Non-Member

LECTURE: James McClelland and Lynn Miller, City in a Park: A History of Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park System

Wednesday, November 18, 2015, 5:30 PM

Begun in the 19th century as a civic effort to provide a clean water supply to Philadelphia, Fairmount Park also furnished public grounds for boat races and hiking, among other activities. Millions travel to the city to view its 18th-century villas, attend boat races on the Schuylkill River, visit the Philadelphia Zoo, hear concerts in summer, stroll the city’s historic squares, and enjoy its enormous collection of public art. In City in a Park, the authors provide an affectionate and comprehensive history of this 200-year-old network of parks.

James McClelland is a freelance writer whose work focuses on the arts. He is Executive Director Emeritus of the Philadelphia Art Alliance and the author of The Martinos: A Legacy of Art and Fountains of Philadelphia: A Guide. Athenaeum stockholder Lynn Miller is Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Temple University. He is the author of Global Order: Values and Power in International Politics and Crossing the Line (a novel), and the co-author (with Annette H. Emgarth) of French Philadelphia: The French Cultural & Historical Presence in the Delaware Valley.

Book signing and reception to follow.  Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

Qty Description Price
McClelland-Miller Program Non-Member

DISCUSSION: “Themes of Architecture and Cultural Transformation”

Wednesday, December 2, 2015, 5:30 PM

Architects from the young architecture studio stARTT will express their idea of the city, both contemporary and future, and they will do so by presenting selected architectural projects, from which effectively their vision emerges. This event, which is co-sponsored by Professionisti Italiani Philadelphia (PI-Philly) and the Athenaeum, aims at creating an occasion for young creative and engaged people to truly manifest and present to the general public their belief for our cities, using their language, which is architecture.

stARTT is an emerging architecture office based in Rome. Its focus on transformation at architectural and territorial scale is based both on design and research. In 2014 stARTT was invited to participate in the 14th International Architecture Exhibition, the Venice Biannual (Biennale di Venezia). Discussion by architects Simone Capra and Dario Scaravelli of Studio stART (Rome). Wine and Cheese reception at 5:30/Talk at 6:00PM.

Free. RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

LECTURE: Marjorie G. Jones, The Life and Times of Mary Vaux Walcott

Wednesday, December 9, 2015, 5:30 PM

Spanning two centuries, The Life & Times of Mary Vaux Walcott tells the story of a remarkable Philadelphia Quaker (1860-1940), whose life as an avid explorer, glaciologist, photographer, BIA commissioner & above all, renowned illustrator of North American wildflowers, earned her the sobriquet Audubon of Botany.

 Marjorie G. Jones is the author of Frances Yates & the Hermetic Tradition, the first biography of the noted British historian. A graduate of Wheaton College, Norton MA, the Rutgers School of Law & the Graduate Faculty of the New School in New York City, she is a member of Writing Women’s Lives Seminar in NYC.

Reception and book signing to follow. Book signing and reception to follow.  Free for Athenaeum Members, All others $10.  Members may RSVP by calling 215-925-2688 or emailing

Qty Description Price
Jones Program Non-Member

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