Founder's Hall Museum

Stephen Girard – merchant, banker and landowner – was the wealthiest man in American when he died in 1831. In an unprecedented act of philanthropy, he left his fortune to establish Girard College, originally endowed to educate “poor, white male orphans.”

Housed in a magnificent Greek Revival landmark, the Founder’s Hall Museum offers a glimpse into the complex life of America’s first multi-millionaire and illuminates the legacy of a school which has fascinated visitors since the 19th century, became the focus of a key Northern civil rights case in the 20th century, and continues to educate youth today.

Open Hours

Due to renovation at Founder’s Hall, the museum is currently closed to in-person visitation.

You can explore the museum on your own through our new virtual tour or join one of our guided virtual tours listed below.

Live Virtual Tours

Sept. 21, 4-5 PM EST

Join us online for a free live virtual tour of Founder’s Hall and its museum with Director of Historical Resources, Kathy Haas. The live virtual tours will be held over Zoom and each tour will feature a guided walk-through of Founder’s Hall at Girard College and its museum collections in real time within our 360-degree virtual tour, along with the opportunity for Q&A.  Register on Eventbrite for Zoom call details.

Archives Month Events

October is Archives Month and we are celebrating with a historical walking tour and special virtual tours that highlight our archival collections.

On-site Historical Campus Tour:
October 4, 5:30 PM

Enjoy a free guided tour behind the famous 10-foot wall of Girard College with Director of Historical Resources Kathy Haas. As we stroll around this 43-acre oasis in the middle of the city, we’ll look at the campus as it exists today, along with archival maps and photographs that document the campus’s history and growth.

Register on Eventbrite

Archives Month Virtual Museum Tours:
Thursday Oct 13, 4-5 PM
Monday Oct 17, noon-1 PM

The live virtual tours will be held over Zoom and feature a guided walk-through of Founder’s Hall at Girard College and its museum collections in real time within our 360-degree virtual tour, along with the opportunity for questions.

In honor of Archives Month, the October tours will highlight many of the unique archival materials in our collection, ranging from hospital records from the 1793 yellow fever epidemic to photographs of the 1960s struggle to desegregate the school to menus of dining hall cuisine.

Register on Eventbrite

 

 

Explore the Founder’s Hall Museum at Girard College using the links below:

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Our Founder

Stephen Girard

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Architecture and Campus