Pennypacker Mills
5 Haldeman Rd.
Schwenksville, PA 19473-1844
(610) 287-9349
Official Website

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Pennypacker Mills was the summer estate of former Pennsylvania Governor Samuel W. Pennypacker. In fact it was and is a 135-acre working "Gentleman's Farm." A landscaped fifteen acres, which was reserved for family recreation, and the mansion are the subject of the site today.

At the turn of the century it was in vogue to be associated with farming -- hard working and close to the land. The farmer was the icon of America itself. Governor Pennypacker took this ideal to heart, The Governor was also one of the first to become aware of the historical significance of Colonial times. With these two factors in mind -- the American symbol of the farmer and the significance of early Colonial activity -- Pennypacker purchased the historic farm. It was first settled around 1730, and General Washington stayed here in 1777. In fact the Governor had a genealogical link to the house: it was first purchased by a Pennypacker in 1747.

Using the services of architect Arthur Brockie and the landscape firm of Thomas Meehan & Sons, Pennypacker transformed the stucco-over-stone German farmhouse into a Georgian-style Colonial mansion. With the exception of the fireplace in the summer kitchen (an outbuilding), every trace of the house's history was removed and replaced by 1902 copies of 18th century English details. From the floorboards to the roof shingles, everything went.

The result was the embodiment of Pennypacker's vision of history. It was also a very comfortable house, featuring the most modern conveniences of the time.

The summer kitchen was converted to the Governor's private "museum," and it is the only area on the site that retains its original 18th century fabric with a panelled walk-in fireplace. Today visitors can enjoy this step back into time through a Guided Tour of the furnished mansion, the summer kitchen, and the beautiful grounds with their interpretive trails.

Throughout the year a variety of special events give families the opportunity to experience history and celebrate significant days. A great Civil War Re-enactment and an Earth Day Celebration are just two of these events, most of which are free. Call for a calendar.

School Groups and others will benefit greatly from a Guided Tour of the house and grounds. The School tour includes a meadow walk or games, and can be adapted to students' age.

Hours: Open Tuesday - Saturday, 10am - 4pm, Sunday 1 - 4. Closed Mondays.
Adults $2.00 donation.
Group Reservations: At least 4 weeks in advance recommended.
Lunch: Picnic area available.
Handicapped Access: First floor of mansion and restrooms are handicap accessible.
Directions: Located at the intersection of Rts. 73 and 29. Take Rt. 611 North to Melrose Park to Rt. 309 North to Flourtown to Rt. 73 North to Schwenksville intersection of Rt. 29. 30 - 60 minutes northwest of Philadelphia.

Copyright © 1996-2014 by Patrick Tadeushuk. All Rights Reserved.