This view of the building was done by Cephas G. Childs, who did a number of engravings of Philadelphia. Many of these were published in a series called Views in Philadelphia and its Environs, from original Drawings taken in 1827-30 done between 1827 and 1830. Even though this building was in the middle of the city, if you look closely, you'll notice that their are no other buildings around. This was probably done by the artist to symbolize the interest of the Academy in nature. If you keep looking closely you'll also see that this building has a round shape on the roof. This kind of roof on a building is called a dome and the small tower on top of it is called cupola. To see more images by Childs, many of them from the Free Library of Philadelphia like this one, click here.
The Academy of Natural Sciences was founded in 1812 by a group of nature-lovers and scientists. The founders covered a wide variety of fields and interests in the sciences, from the study of birds (ornithology) to medicine, to botany (the study of plants) and geology (the study of rocks and the earth). Like a number of places, such as the Library Company and the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. To return to your tour through Philadelphia, click here.