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

July 13, 4-5 PM EST
August 10, 12-1 PM EST
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.

History Pop-up: Wed. August 3 at 5:30

Join us at Corinthian Gardens (alongside Eastern State Penitentiary) for a history pop-up organized by Cara Schneider Bongiorno, a longtime former staff member of Visit Philadelphia. Learn about the history and contemporary mission of Girard College and our neighbor Eastern State Penitentiary with staff from both institutions. Best for curious adults and kids 12 and up.

LOCATION: The Garden picnic tables in Corinthian Gardens. Enter on Brown Street near Corinthian Ave.

SIGN UP: Drop ins are welcome, but signing up will help us plan and will  get you potential rain location updates.

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

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Stephen Girard

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