Tour guides bring back ‘Lost Philadelphia’ in new book

Tenderloin District Philadelphia 1931 North 8th street
This picture of Philadelphia’s Tenderloin District circa 1931 is featured in “Lost Philadelphia,” by Ed Mauger and Bob Skiba. Courtesy of Pavilion Books

Two aficionados of Philadelphia’s unique style recently teamed up for a book project that showcases invisible pieces of the past.

“San Francisco had an earthquake and Chicago had a fire. We on the other hand, more than any other city in America, preserved and repurposed lots of 18th and 19th century-style buildings,” said Ed Mauger, 70, co-author of “Lost Philadelphia” and a Philly tour guide for more than 10 years.

“They’re lost in that they’re lost to their original purpose,” Mauger said of buildings such as Eastern State Penitentiary and the Curtis Center at 6th and Walnut streets.

“Lost Philadelphia” features about 150 photographs of Philadelphia’s former great architectural standouts accompanied by detailed historical information, with an emphasis on institutions that failed to stand the test of time.

That includes the historic Dunbar Theatre, a black-owned theater on Lombard and Broad streets. It was a gem in the historic corridor along Lombard and South Streets that “was like Philadephia’s very own Harlem,” as co-author Bob Skiba, 63, put it.

“Social history doesn’t really leave a visible footprint,” acknowledged Skiba, a Philly tour guide for 14 years, who also offers tours of the Gayborhood.

The book includes the grittier side of Philly history, with information about the historic Tenderloin district.

“Today we have 1200 legal [alcohol] licenses in Philadelphia. But it was estimated in any year during Prohibition that there were 12,000 speakeasies in Philadelphia,” Skiba said.

After reading up on the history of the city, walking around Philadelphia may feel like traveling into the past.

“I just see layers and layers of history and stories,” Skiba said. “That’s why I love giving tours, I get to tell these stories.”

Meet the authors

Skiba and Mauger will host a conversation on “Lost Philadelphia” at 6 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 4, at the Philadelphia History Museum, 15 S. 7th St. The event is free.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.