Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


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Philadelphia Business Signs

Before European conquest, the Philadelphia area was the site of a Lenape (Delaware) Native American village, Shackamaxon.  In the Delaware language, this translates into the phrase: “to make a chief or king place.”  Eventually, the area would fall under English control.  In 1681, partly to repay a debt, Charles II of England granted William Penn a charter for what would eventually become the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  Penn first imagined the whole area to be free of religious persecution.  (He was a Quaker.)  He renamed the main city of his new colony Philadelphia, after an ancient Greek city mentioned in the Epistles.  In Greek, ‘philos’ means ‘love’ or ‘friendship’ while ‘adelphos’ means ‘brother’.  This is where Philadelphia gets its nickname, ‘The City of Brotherly Love”.

Today, Philadelphia is the largest city in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the fifth-most-populous city in the country.  According to a 2013 United States Census Bureau estimate, the city has a population of 1,553,165.  The Philadelphia Metropolitan Statistical Area, which covers portions of four US states, is home to more than 6 million people.  This makes it the sixth-largest metropolitan area in the United States.

Philadelphia is home to the Philadelphia Stock Exchange, the oldest stock exchange in the country.  It was founded in 1790 and is now owned by The NASDAQ OMX Group.  Its official name now is NASDAQ OMX PHLX.

In a 2011 report by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, it was estimated that the Philadelphia area had a GMP of $347 billion in 2010.  This would make it the seventh-largest metropolitan economy in the U.S.  The city is home to several Fortune 500 companies including Comcast, Colonial Penn, CIGNA, Independence Blue Cross, Lincoln Financial Group, Sunoco, Aramark, Crown, Rohm and Haas, FMC, GlaxoSmithKline, Boeing Rotorcraft Systems, and Pep Boys.

Philadelphia served as the site for multiple historic occasions during the American Revolution.  Following the revolution, the city also served as the temporary capital of the United States from 1790 to 1800, while the Federal City was under construction in the District of Columbia.  (Which is now referred to as Washington, D.C.)

A Philadelphia Park Statistic reported that in 2010, the Liberty Bell attracted over 2 million visitors.  The Liberty Bell is one of the nation’s most well known landmarks, with its distinctive crack and its role during the country’s birth.  It was originally cast in 1752 and was used during the eighteenth century in order to summon lawmakers to legislative sessions and to alert citizens to public meetings and proclamations.  The bell is now located in the Liberty Bell Center in Independence National Historical Park.

The Park’s centerpiece is Independence Hall.  This hall, now a World Heritage site, was completed in 1753 as the colonial legislature (later Pennsylvania State House) for the Province of Pennsylvania.  Independence Hall is known worldwide, however, as the principal meeting place of the Second Continental Congress (1775-1783) where the Declaration of Independence was signed and also the site of the Constitutional Convention during the summer of 1787.

History isn’t the only thing Philadelphia has going for it, however.  The city is also home to a slew of professional sports teams.  The NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles play at Lincoln Financial Field.  They have won three Championships, all before the Super Bowl era.  MLB’s Philadelphia Phillies, established in 1883, play their home games at Citizens Bank Park.  They are the winners of two World Series.  The NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers play in the Wells Fargo Center and have two Stanley Cups to their name.  The NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers also play at the Wells Fargo Center.  The Sixers have won two NBA titles.  AFL’s Philadelphia Soul play in the same location and have won one Arena Bowl.  MLS’ Philadelphia Union play at PPL Park.

Own a small business in the Philadelphia metropolitan area?  Thinking about it?  These resources may help you:

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