Chestnut Hill was home to some of America's most affluent and socially elite families at the beginning of the twentieth century. They engaged prominent architects to design their houses in the latest styles, leaving Chestnut Hill with a rich architectural legacy. It was also a destination for immigrants. Stonemasons from Italy came to build the splendid estates. Irish families escaping poverty worked as domestic servants, gardeners, and chauffeurs. People of all backgrounds crossed paths on Germantown Avenue, where shopkeepers saw to the needs of the rich and modest alike. This busy artery was Chestnut Hill's link to downtown Philadelphia. Trolleys, railroads, hospitals, and the Wissahickon Creek were all part of the Chestnut Hill story. Chestnut Hill Revisited uses photographs unearthed from family albums and historical archives to show the area as it once was.
Author Bio: Elizabeth Farmer Jarvis is the curator of the Chestnut Hill Historical Society and formerly of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. She and Thomas Keels co-authored Chestnut Hill.
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