Founded in 1824, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania (HSP) is the home to unique historical collections from 350 years of American history comprised of some 600,000 printed items and more than 21 million manuscript and graphic items.  With all these resources the HSP hosted a History Makers Camp for Philadelphia high school students to create a mobile-friendly walking tour guiding users through the African-American struggle for freedom and equality in Philadelphia.  Nine students in this two-week program under the direction of a panel of historians, educators, and elected officials created Explore Philly, a mobile web walking tour guide which is also available for free on the App Store and Google Play through the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App.  

Mobile Web Tour

Currently there are 3 categories included in the app: Abolition Period, Progressive Era, and Civil Rights Movement.  The content for each key landmark include a video link, interesting historical background information and useful links where you can learn more.  “There’s something powerful about bringing these stories of struggle and success from the pages of a historical document to the streets of a city where they are still playing out today,” says Beth Twiss Houting, senior director of programs and services at HSP.  Stay tuned for more to come from this great program.

iOS & Android Apps

The flexibility of the App Builder platform allowed HSP to launch not only a virtual tour for mobile web browsers, but also an iOS and Android App through the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App.  The Explore Philly guide is available for download through the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App for both Apple and Android devices.  The mobile app allows users to turn ON the GPS Auto Play so that whenever they are close to a point of interest on the tour, the stop in the app automatically opens.

Interested in starting a program for youth in your town?  Contact Tour Buddy to find out how.