City Cast

Get To Know Germantown

Brittany Valentine
Brittany Valentine
Posted on November 17, 2022   |   Updated on June 21
The Johnson House Historic Site on Germantown Ave. (Jeff Stoltzfus/Flickr)

The Johnson House Historic Site on Germantown Ave. (Jeff Stoltzfus/Flickr)

Germantown is one of the country’s most historic neighborhoods. Its claim to national fame stems from several important events. 

The first organized protest against slavery in the Americas was organized over 300 years ago in 1688 by four Germantown Quakers. In 1793, the neighborhood served as a temporary home for President George Washington and his cabinet. Years later, this home became known as the “Germantown White House.”  

Germantown leans into their historical significance by hosting yearly events and festivals.  

The Johnson House Historic Site hosts an annual Juneteenth festival to commemorate the official end of slavery. The festival features vendors, performances, and activities which educate visitors about anti-slavery and abolitionist movements. 

Every October, the Revolutionary Germantown Festival marks the anniversary of the Battle of Germantown, and it features museum tours, historical reenactments, performances, and more.  

Though it's famous for historical sites and houses, Germantown’s appeal goes further. It has plenty of charming shops, cafes, restaurants, music venues, and art galleries.  

One of my favorites is the IMPeRFeCT Gallery. Founded in 2012 by Renny Molenaar and Rocio Cabello, the gallery is a major hub for artists and creatives from Northwest Philly to showcase their work.

It’s clear that Molenaar and Cabello treat art as a foundation for community building and human joy, and not just as objects to be observed, bought, and sold.

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