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Source: Philadelphia Business Journal:
Date: January 21, 2009
Byline: unsigned

President's House gets funding pledge

The President's House exhibit planned for Independence Mall in Philadelphia received a pledge of $3.5 million Wednesday from Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell.

With the state funding, the project now has the $8.5 million needed to start construction of the project, which will include interactive exhibits as well a view into the remaining foundation of the house.

President's House — Freedom and Slavery in Making a New Nation is slated to open in fall 2010 on the southeast corner of 6th and Market streets. Work will start this spring.

When the nation's Capitol was in Philadelphia, from 1790 to 1800, Presidents George Washington and John Adams lived there. The house was subsequently torn down.

In January 2002, historian Ed Lawler published findings that revealed that nine slaves had lived with and served the Washingtons.

"This is a story of enormous importance," Rendell said at a press conference Wednesday at the Independence Visitor Center, across the street from the site.

In 2007, an excavation revealed the foundation of the house and uncovered some artifacts. An observation deck was added for visitors, who flocked to get a glimpse of the ruins, which have since been covered again.

Designers of the exhibition, Kelly/Maiello Architects and Planners of Philadelphia, will include the foundation as part of the site.

Remaining funding for the project was pledged by the city of Philadelphia ($1.5 million), the federal government ($3.6 million) and the Delaware River Port Authority ($1.4 million). Funding also will allow for a $2.1 million endowment.


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