Rowhouse City: History and Adaptation in Philadelphia

This two-day symposium will focus on the history and development of the rowhouse in Philadelphia, critically evaluate its current conditions, and identify the inherent advantages and challenges associated with its preservation in a 21st-century context. 

This symposium is presented by the Weitzman School's Graduate Program in Historic Preservation and the Association for Preservation Technology Delaware Valley Chapter.

Current List of Speakers

Day One October 7, 2022 | The Rowhouse & Its Context: History, Development, Culture, Typology

  • Charles Duff, Jubilee Baltimore: “The North Atlantic Cities: An International Region of Architecture and City Design With its Centers in London, Amsterdam, and Philadelphia”
  • Ted Maust, Elfreth’s Alley: "The Homes of Elfreth’s Alley as Early Philadelphia Row Houses"
  • Jeffrey Cohen, Bryn Mawr College: "Fire’s collateral gift to history: Seeing rowhouses through the lens of old insurance surveys"
  • Kim Hoagland, Michigan Technological University: “D.C. Rules! Building Regulations in the Nation’s Capital”
  • Donna Rilling, Stony Brook University (SUNY): “The ‘poorer class of the people of colour in West Philadelphia’ build”
  • Amy Hillier, University of Pennsylvania: “Du Bois’s Investigation of Philadelphia’s Seventh Ward”
  • Bruce Laverty, The Athenaeum of Philadelphia: “Mining Rowhouse Gold: Old Collections Newly Accessible”
  • Andrew Dolkart, Columbia University: “The Philadelphia Rowhouse Reborn”
  • Francesca Ammon, University of Pennsylvania: “Preserving Society Hill: Mapping the Sites and Stories fo Change in an Urban Renewal Neighborhood”

Day Two October 8, 2022 | Preservation & Adaptation: Practice & Future Strategies

  • Liz Robinson, Philadelphia Solar Energy Association: “Can Philadelphia Become the City of Carbon Free Rowhome?"
  • Paul Thompson, AIA, CPHC: “Current Trends in Passive Rowhouse Design”
  • Mike Hauptman, AIA, Brawer & Hauptman Architects: “Queen Village—Philadelphia’s First Neighborhood Conservation District”

Posters proposals are currently being accepted. Want to learn more about submitting a poster


SAH thanks The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation
for its operating support.
Society of Architectural Historians
1365 N. Astor Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610