The Ashmead Collection is a series of scrapbooks held at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. The set consists of 49 hard-bound books into which newspaper clippings have been pasted that pertain to the history of Pennsylvania, focusing greatly on the city of Philadelphia and the surrounding region. To view a sample volume from the collection, click HERE.

The collection was acquired by the Historical Society in 1952 as a result of a generous donation by the Library of the University of Pennsylvania. The Society chose to retain the collection because of its significance to the city of Philadelphia and its potential value for historical research due to its unique combination of articles. However, up until this time, only an incomplete attempt had been made to index the collection in a systematic way. Therefore, anyone who knew of the resource and wished to utilize the information it held had no other option than to sift through each volume page by page without any indication as to where specific information could be found.

The purpose of the Ashmead Scrapbook Collection Project is to make this valuable historical resource easily accessible to researchers and students of the Philadelphia region's history by providing a user-friendly, web-based browsable listing of the collection's contents. While the goal of the Historical Society is to one day make the entire collection completely available to the public on-line, currently, this website contains information only on images located in the first ten volumes. I have not scanned the images for this project, however, I chose TWO sample images from the collection to make available on this website. These images are intended to give the viewer an understanding of the types and quality of images that exist within Ashmead's scrapbooks.

The subject of these images specifically relates to structures, buildings, and places in the Philadelphia region - the predominant theme of all images in the collection. Graphic images were chosen as the indexing strategy in this project due to their value to researchers and unique view of a historical Philadelphia that no longer exists. The built environment of Philadelphia and the surrounding area is revealed through these images and their accompanying articles.


The Ashmead Scrapbook Collection Project as represented in this website can be browsed by:

Building Type