Philadelphia Social History Project Series RSS

The Philadelphia Social History Project (PSHP), directed by Theodore Hershberg at the University of Pennsylvania, was a pioneering effort by an interdisciplinary group of scholars and students to study the historic social, economic, and demographic dynamics of Philadelphia. Begun as a comparative study of social mobility in a 19th-century city, the PSHP grew into a broad example of "New Urban History." The PSHP compiled a machine-readable data base unprecedented at the time, including block-by-block description of the 2.5 million persons living in Philadelphia in the years 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880 and hundreds of thousands of individual persons and families as well as the city's housing, businesses, manufacturing firms, and transportation facilities. Additionally, the PSHP reconstructed the careers of thousands of ordinary persons to permit longitudinal analysis on the individual level.

Most Recent Studies

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Most Recent Publications

2012
Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research . Free Blacks in Philadelphia, PA in the mid-19th Century: A Data-Driven Learning Guide. Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research.
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2008
Condran, Gretchen A. The elusive role of scientific medicine in mortality decline: Diphtheria in Nineteenth- and Early Twentieth-Century Philadelphia. Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences. 63, (4), 484-522.
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2004
Hargis, Peggy G.,  Horan, Patrick M. Bounded by Culture or Culture Bound: Ethnicity, Schooling, and the Interplay of Theory and Evidence. Historical Methods. 37, (1), 23-33.
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2004
Thomas, William G., II . Computing and the historical imagination. A Companion to Digital Humanities. New York: Blackwell.
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2002
Jensen, Richard . 'No Irish need apply': A myth of victimization. Journal of Social History. 36, (2), 405-429.
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1997
Hershberg, Theodore . Free Blacks in antebellum Philadelphia: A study of ex-slaves, freeborn, and socioeconomic decline. African Americans in Pennsylvania: Shifting Historical Perspectives. University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press.
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1996
Haines, Michael R. Long-term marriage patterns in the United States from colonial times to the present. History of the Family. 1, (1), 15-39.
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1992
Gin, Alan,  Sonstelie, Jon . The streetcar and residential location in Nineteenth Century Philadelphia. Journal of Urban Economics. 32, (1), 92-107.
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1988
Nash, Gary . The dream deferred. Forging Freedom: The Formation of Philadelphia's Black Community, 1720-1840. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
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1986
Goldin, Claudia . The economic status of women in the early republic: Quantitative evidence. Journal of Interdisciplinary History. XVI, (3), 375-404.
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