Allen's Department Store- Germantown, Philadelphia, PA

ARCH 4199- Capstone Research Seminar for Historic Preservation- Temple University

Professor Dennis Playdon

The Capstone project will guide students to develop methods of inquiry

that bridge disciplines we have already studied. Research should be

original, that is, not reproduced from other sources except to support our

own position.


Allen’s Department Store is located at the southwest

corner of West Chelten Aveue and Greene Street. Philadelphia was the

birthplace of America’s consumer culture. It all started with John Wanamaker

when he opened his “Grand Depot” that changed the face of

retailing in Philadelphia. George Allen, Inc. was established in 1837, and

over time, the company decided to keep increasing their stores until it

finally reached to Germantown in 1927. The store lasted until 1979 due

to change of demographics in Germantown. When all information is put

together, it will turn into a nomination for the building to the Philadelphia

Historic Commission.

Unfortunately after the presentation, the nomination didn't happen. I contacted Ken Weinstein from the Philly Retail Office that currently owned the building today, to get his approval on the nomination. Weinstein told me he and his company would take care of renovating and restoring the former Allen's store. 

Special Thanks to Alex Bartlett from the Germantown Historical Society, Temple University's Special Collections Research Center, the City Archives, and the Free Library of Philadelphia, for providing the resources I needed for my project!

To read my essay on Allen's Department Store, click on the image!