Before you start
The Philadelphia Register of Historic Places uses official addresses issued by the Office of Property Assessment (OPA). These addresses may be different from property mailing addresses.
Before researching a property, use the OPA website to find its official address. You may need to search by the block or by the property owner’s name to determine the right address.
The Philadelphia Register of Historic Places is an inventory of properties that have been designated as historic. The Philadelphia Historical Commission maintains the register and keeps files on each of its entries.
The commission’s archive is helpful if you’re researching a property or nominating one for the register. You can view the register and the commission’s files at no charge.
Find a property on the register
Research a property in the Historical Commission's files
If you find a property on the register, you can research it in the commission’s files. These files often include:
- Chains of title.
- Fire insurance surveys.
- Approved building permit applications.
To begin, contact the Historical Commission staff at (215) 686-7660 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We can help you get started with your research.
Planning a research visit
If you want to view a file, use our online appointment system to schedule your visit. Once you’ve entered your contact information, select “Historical Commission” and choose “Historical research appointment.”
The office of the Historical Commission is located at:
1515 Arch St.
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Office hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Appointments are required.