Union League of Philadelphia

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Union League of Philadelphia
ULC Logo.png
The Union League Logo
Union League of Philadelphia is located in Philadelphia
Union League of Philadelphia
Location 140 South Broad Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Coordinates 39°56′59″N 75°9′53.37″W / 39.94972°N 75.1648250°W / 39.94972; -75.1648250Coordinates: 39°56′59″N 75°9′53.37″W / 39.94972°N 75.1648250°W / 39.94972; -75.1648250
Built 1864-65
Architect John Fraser
Horace Trumbauer
Architectural style Second Empire, Beaux Arts
Governing body private
NRHP Reference # 79002331[1]
Added to NRHP June 22, 1979

The Union League of Philadelphia, founded in 1862 as a Patriotic Society to support the policies of Abraham Lincoln, is today a private members-only club.

Founded by Philadelphia society, it remains a bastion of the elite; among its 3,300 members are leaders in business, academia, law, medicine, politics, religion and the arts. Members gather to socialize, dine, network, attend events, exercise and relax in the 1856 Second Empire-style building. The club is ranked first on the Five Star Platinum Club list.[2]

History[edit]

Union League of Philadelphia

The Union League of Philadelphia is the oldest and most prominent of the remaining loyalty leagues. Founded in 1862 as a patriotic society to support the Union and the policies of President Abraham Lincoln, it laid the philosophical foundation of other Union Leagues across a nation torn by Civil War. It has given loyal support to the American military in all conflicts since. Its motto is "Love of Country Leads."

As in 1862, its members prize tradition and represent the Philadelphia region’s elite in business, education, religion as well as the arts and culture. Although no longer exclusively Republican or male in membership, The Union League of Philadelphia has maintained its identity as distinctly traditional and politically conservative.[dubious ][citation needed] The club has hosted U.S. presidents, heads of state, industrialists, entertainers and visiting dignitaries from around the world.

The club's building, a classic Second Empire-style structure with a brick and brownstone façade and dramatic twin circular staircases leading to the main entrance on Broad Street, was designed by John Fraser and completed in May 1865 [the opening was originally scheduled for March 1865, with President Lincoln in attendance, but was delayed due to wartime construction supply shortages]. In 1905, Philadelphia architect (and Union League member) Horace Trumbauer won a design competition to build major additions to the building. The Beaux Arts-style additions, completed in 1910 and 1911, expanded the length of the building to a city block. The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. Long-term interior and exterior renovations of every part of The Union League of Philadelphia complex -- including its Inn's guests rooms, restaurants and fitness center -- will be completed by 2015.

Washington Grays Monument by John A Wilson in front of Union League of Philadelphia

Adorning the walls and hallways is the club's collection of art and artifacts, a chronicle of Philadelphia's imprint upon the American landscape. A Heritage Center was added to provide a permanent place to store and display the extensive collection of Civil War-related documents and objects.

The club has three charitable foundations: the Abraham Lincoln Foundation, the Youth Work Foundation and the Scholarship Foundation which educate the public about U.S. history, recognize student role models in schools and provide awards and scholarships to deserving students.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes

  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2007-01-23. 
  2. ^ "Platinum Clubs of America® 2012". sibbaldassociates.com. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 

Bibliography

  • Fleming, Walter L. ed. Documentary History of Reconstruction: Political, Military, Social, Religious, Educational, and Industrial (1906). vol 2 pp 1–29.
  • Union League of Philadelphia, The League (1909)

External links[edit]