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Marieluise and Martin Christadler scrapbook on Philadelphia


Held at: University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts [Contact Us]3420 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6206

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Martin and Marieluise Christadler, natives of Germany, spent one year in Philadelphia as fellowship holders in American Studies under the American Council of Learned Societies. At the time, Martin Christadler was on the faculty of the University of Tübingen, Germany, and was researching and writing a book on the American essay of the 18th and 19th centuries. Marieluise Christadler was a teacher of civics in secondary schools and was much concerned with the Civil Rights movement. Martin Christadler went on to serve as emeritus professor of American literature in the Center for North American Studies at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität in Frankfurt am Main.

This scrapbook documents the history of Philadelphia and the experience of the Christadlers during their stay in Philadelphia in 1965. The scrapbook includes typed quotes from books and letters, clipped illustrations of historic paintings, newspaper clippings (especially headlines), handwritten annotations, and photographs. The typed quotes date from 1628 to 1960 and describe Philadelphia throughout its history. Quotes in English, French, and German come from documents including the Charter of Privileges, by William Penn; Nouveau Voyage dans les États-Unis de l'Amérique septentrionale, fait en 1788, by J.P. Brissot de Warville; Benjamin Franklin's autobiography; Letters from an American Farmer, by J. Hector St. John de Crèvecœur; and Domestic Manners of the Americans, by Mrs. Trollope. The photographs, taken by Martin and Marieluise Christadler, feature cityscapes, artwork (particularly sculpture), residences, churches and meeting houses, gardens, construction sites, and services and commerce. Perhaps the most interesting items captured in the photographs of this scrapbook are the unposed, informal, and anonymous people who have been documented going about their day-to-day business--shopping, working, eating, sitting, or walking. There are a good number of photographs of children playing and there are a few photographs of pets, which appear to be the focal point of the images. The vast majority of the photographs are black and white, however there are a few in color.

While the scrapbook in its entirety documents Philadelphia and its history, the arrangement of the scrapbook was deliberate. Every few pages there is a new heading and the following pages relate to that theme. Headings include: "Variety and Gigantism in Philadelphia," "Various opinions about Indians," "The Holy Experiment--Tolerance," "The Quakers," "Morals and Manners," "How Things Changed," "City of Brotherly Love," "Des frères qui vivent ensemble," "Des frères qui vivent suels," "No Need for Police," "Negroes in Philadelphia," "The Greene Country Towne," "Babylon of America," "Cleanliness ...," "The Graces: graceful patterns, gracious living, graceful women," "The Pleasures of the Table," "Pleasures of the Mind," "Franklin" (includes images of the University of Pennsylvania), "Philadelphia, Athens of America," "Spirit of Enterprise," "Progress," and "Gigantism."

Gift of Marieluise and Martin Christadler, September 19, 1965.

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Finding Aid Author
Aleth Tisseau des Escotais
Finding Aid Date
2014 April 30
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Scrapbook documenting the history of Philadelphia and the experiences of Martin and Marieluise Christadler's year in Philadelphia, 1965.
Box 1 Volume 1

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