Pennsylvania has no shortage of famous historic sites. Here are just a few suggestions for those who want to dig even deeper into the state’s rich past with tours of historic homes, fascinating museums and unique historic sites dedicated to the stories of yore.
Historic Home Tours in Pennsylvania
Visitors can experience colonial life at Pennsbury Manor in Morrisville, the reconstructed home of state founder William Penn along the Delaware River, through demonstrations of daily life as it existed 300 years ago.
Guided tours and educational programs are available at the Pearl S. Buck House, the Nobel and Pulitzer Prize-winning author’s 68-acre estate in Perkasie.
The Shriver House Museum in Gettysburg offers a glimpse into the area’s famous battle through the eyes of the Shriver family. See bullet holes in the exterior walls, letters written by the family, wartime medical supplies and much more.
Grey Towers National Historic Site in Milford encompasses the mansion and gardens of the nation’s first chief forester, Gifford Pinchot. Tour landscape and forestry trails as well as the impressive mansion.
Birdsboro is the site of the Daniel Boone Homestead, where visitors can see what rural life was like for 18th-century Berks County residents (including its most famous one!). Experts interpret both the early Boones and the saga of settlers’ contrasting lifestyles in rural Pennsylvania.
The open-air Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum in Lancaster brings two centuries of early Pennsylvania German culture and history to life with artifacts, exhibits, costumed interpreters, classes and tours of the community’s different aspects.
Visitors can tour the reconstructed and restored Fort Ligonier to see where George Washington’s military career began (including his actual saddle pistols), artifacts from the French and Indian and Seven Years’ wars and the parlor room of a 1700s estate.
The Fort Pitt Block House is Pittsburgh’s oldest architectural landmark. Constructed 250 years ago, it served as a military redoubt during the French and Indian War, a trading post, a family home and even a candy shop.
The Harmony Museum’s eight properties, which encompass 250 years of history, include a Mennonite meetinghouse and cemetery, George Washington’s 1753 mission, a collection of 19th-century sporting rifles, a weavers cabin and more.
Historic Sites in Pennsylvania
Visitors can learn how America won its independence at Washington Crossing Historic Park. The new visitor center’s exhibits tell the story of George Washington’s midnight crossing of the Delaware River and the “10 crucial days” that followed.
The home and farm of General and President Dwight D. Eisenhower and his wife Mamie welcome history lovers to Gettysburg at the Eisenhower National Historic Site. Self-guided, audio and ranger tours are available.
Twenty authentic historic sites make up Historic Moravian Bethlehem, a community founded in 1741 by members of a Protestant denomination. See where they built their homes, buildings for crafts and trade and much more.
Paths to the Past is a survey of the historical markers present throughout Clearfield County that document Coal Country’s people, places and past events.
Train buffs can board a York County replica of the Civil War steam locomotive that carried Abraham Lincoln to deliver the Gettysburg Address at Steam Into History.
The ruins of the Austin Dam, which burst in 1911, engulfed the town and claimed 78 lives still stand today. Amid the tragedy, a beautiful memorial park has emerged for hikers, picnickers and campers.
A populist-revolutionary spirit pervades at the French Azilum Historic Site in Towanda, where French refugees founded a serene camp in the late 1700s to escape oppression back home.