Torresdale was the home of early Philadelphia’s “rich and famous.” The wide expanse of farms and estates included power-brokers of their time – bankers, industrialists, politicians and more. They brought fun and light (literally) to the Delaware River. By the 1890′s some of the first electrification illuminated the waterfront while they hosted Rowing Association races for universities from throughout the east coast.

By the 1930′s the Torresdale estates began to look attractive to developers as the automobile let the families who lived there to seek other retreats and those who didn’t live there to think of Torresdale as a place to live. The post WWII housing boom set Torresdale’s destiny as a “suburb within the city.” Today, if they look hard, Torresdale residents can still make out some of the old farm roads and estates among their houses and shopping centers. But like the earliest residents, the Delaware River is a popular workplace and recreation area for young and old.


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