- City Guides
Philadelphia is notable as America's birthplace, and is somewhat less notable as the birthplace of this website's creator. A city steeped in history and culture, it has many attractions with steampunk appeal. These include the Franklin Institute's science museum, where the Amazing Machine exhibit houses an automaton, built circa 1800, that draws pictures and writes poems.
If that's not enough, Philadelphia is home to the vast collections of the Science History Institute, the medical oddities of the Mütter Museum, and the natural history specimens of the Wagner Free Institute of Science, described as "a rare surviving example of a Victorian era scientific society."
About 30 miles southwest of the city, you'll find the Hagley Museum near Wilmington, Del., occupying an important site in the history of the Industrial Revolution. Thanks to a major acquisition in 2016, the museum contains one of the largest collections of 19th century patent models.
Philadelphia also holds a special place in the history of science fiction. The Philadelphia Science Fiction Society, founded in 1935, is one of the oldest SF organizations, and hosted one of the first science fiction conventions. Philcon was where this author received his first exposure to science fiction fandom.
The listings below cover locations in the Philadelphia area, including its suburbs in New Jersey and Delaware. See the New Jersey section for a complete list of attractions in that state, including places at the Jersey Shore. Check out the "Steamiest Places" section for attractions likely to be of greatest interest to steampunks.