History After Hours: Seafarers and Stargazers

The stellar evening will include beer-tasting with local breweries, and exploring the role of the “sciences of the stars” – including astrology and astronomy – in 18th century life. 

From 5:15 – 6:00 p.m., grab a drink and find out how Philly built its reputation as a brewery town and seaport from beer historian and author of Philadelphia Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in the Cradle of Liberty Rich Wagner during his talk “From Beer to the Stars.” Learn how – as the largest seaport in the colonies and second largest English-speaking city in the world at the time – Philadelphia formed a natural partnership between its maritime and brewery traditions.
From 6:30 – 7:30 p.m., learn about daily life and shared beliefs about science during the 18th and 19th centuries during “Almanacs, Stars, and the Popular Press” from Dr. Darin Hayton, Associate Professor of History of Science and Chair of the History Department at Haverford College, whose research focuses on the sciences of the stars, including astronomy, astrology, mathematics, and medicine.

Throughout the evening, enjoy free beer tastings from La Cabra Brewing Company and Conshohocken Brewing Company in the Museum’s Cross Keys Café. 

In the Museum’s galleries, climb aboard the privateer ship for knot-tying activities, storytelling and cannon drills and view artifacts like the telescope of Revolutionary War Naval Commander John Paul Jones. At a Constellation Station, make a sextant, a celestial navigation instrument, to take home.

In the Museum’s first-floor Rotunda, meet representatives from the Philadelphia Brewing Museum, Rittenhouse Astronomical Society, and the Independence Seaport Museum, who will provide information on their latest exhibit The British Mistake. And try out a survey compass from the American Philosophical Society, which can be seen along with other artifacts in their latest exhibition, Mapping a Nation: Shaping the Early American Republic

History After Hours features extended evening hours from 5 – 8 p.m., special themed programs, happy hour food and drink specials, and full access to the Museum’s exhibits including timed screenings of Washington's War Tent.

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