The National Museum of American Jewish History (NMAJH) is a Smithsonian-affiliated museum at 101 South Independence Mall East (S. 5th Street) at Market Street in Center City Philadelphia. It was founded in 1976.
In March 2020, The National Museum of American Jewish History filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, seeking relief from debt incurred by the construction of its Independence Mall home. The museum's debts included over $30 million to bondholders, and an additional $500,000 to unsecured creditors; at the time of the bankruptcy filing, the museum was paying 20% of its annual budget in interest payments. The filing followed several years of decreasing attendance, revenue, and fundraising. The museum's operations were not affected by the bankruptcy. The museum exited bankruptcy in September 2021.
|Tuesday||10:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Wednesday||10:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Thursday||10:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Friday||10:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Saturday||10:00 AM – 5:30 PM|
|Sunday||10:00 AM – 5:30 PM|
Amy Richardson-McBride | Mar 1, 2018
Amazing museum! Please, please, please, take the time to add this to your schedule. My husband and I spent 5 hours here, and left only because my blood sugar dropped. Although the museum beautifully demonstrates the Jewish experience in America all Americans can see the story of their people in the exhibits. Especially considering the social conversations of immigration currently coursing through our country, this museum allows you a glimpse into the marginalization that all immigrants feel entering a new country. BRING TISSUES!!!
David Snyder | Mar 4, 2018
Learnt about Jews from beginning of united states till after civil war. Some exhibits well done. Others lacked detail. Worth going even if you think you know everything about Jews in united states
Christine Kuan | Jan 23, 2018
It's huge and will take a few hours. I went on a free day so very worth it. Some nice things were the houses of Jewish migrants and learning about different Jewish approaches to modern Jewish religion. I might not have gone if it wasn't free.
IC Harris | Jan 3, 2018
My daughter and I have been quite a few times. Visit twice in 2017-recommend highly for all nationalities, ethnicities & cultures. Family events throughout the year has always been packed with all things and information exclusively no matter childs age. History is history, whether my story, your story or our story. Top of echelon-must go see musuems, even if it is in between exhibits; which for the most part always been a plus each time we have visited.
Phyllis Sanborn | Jan 5, 2018
Gorgeous place with a huge history lesson. Nice place to have a wedding. Make sure you use Feastivities Caters. They were the best!!!!
Gary Kiebach | Mar 6, 2018
The best museums on Market Street! The museum has a good variety of topics surrounding the history of American Jewish culture, and is a very interesting visit. Excited for the Leonard Bernstein exhibition!
Kevin McNeil | Apr 6, 2018
Well organized compendium of Jewish life in America in a beautiful, newly constructed, purpose built structure. The exhibits lead chronologically from the 4th floor beginning in the mid-1600s through the Civil War, and processing down in the logical epochs including post-Civil War through WWII, and post-war to present. The structure and scope by design compresses obviously unequal periods in duration and significance roughly into thirds. The result while encyclopedic paradoxically means shorter shrift given to pivotal developments (e.g. periods of mass migration, the foundation of Israel) and an overweighting of the superficial (e.g. suburbanization and camp). This macro, time-based view leaves much to be explored both thematically and culturally. All of this is said from a point of constructive criticism of course as few Jewish museums have achieved this balanced, American-centric portrayal without an overriding focus on a particular historical event. I hope over time that the museum will morph into depth of issues, themes and currents. Regardless, this is an important institution that has great promise and is worth a visit by many.
Ms Chris Watkins | Apr 20, 2018
Excellent, great history with pictures and artifacts. They came for a freedom that didn't exist in their land, but our President of the United States made good on his promise to practice your religion with out being persecuted. The pictures take you back in time. What a sight to see. 🌹 Philadelphia is always a great place to visit. While in the area do visit the Reading Terminal Market. More fiod then you can think of... Visit by train, the Amtrak, and Greyhound are within walking distance. Bring your walking shoes.
Hannah Knight | May 15, 2018
Great setup! I'd recommend following the suggested timeline. Interactive components with some exhibits designed to support children's engagement
junhong cai | May 12, 2018
Good to learn Jewish culture and why Jewish has so influential in America. There are a lot of amazing audio in museum.
Lavonne Newman | Jun 4, 2018
Very informative. Interesting layout. Many portions brought me to tears. Leonard Bernstein exhibit was exceptional. Everyone should experience this very important museum.
Robert Schlamowitz | May 31, 2018
A fantastic review of American Jewish history in pictures, movies, written descriptions, artifacts. Well laid out in five floors. Great exhibit on Leonard Bernstein's career
Walter Holberg | Jun 13, 2018
This was an amazing museum. I am not Jewish and I was astonished at the discrimination that occurred in the US in the 18th and 19th centuries. Overall, it was very interesting and had fascinating displays.
Scott Reynolds | Jun 29, 2018
As with any Smithsonian museum, it deserves multiple visits. The Bernstein exhibition (through September 2018) is not to be missed! The museum provides a thorough overview of the Jewish experience in the U.S. This is a museum for the whole family. They don't sugar-coat the Holocaust but give it a thorough examination through the American experience. A powerful and important part of our history. Philadelphia is fortunate to have this treasure.
Lauren Scott | Jul 11, 2018
Came for a quick visit on a free day and enjoyed the Bernstein special exhibit. Saw many other patrons participating in Independence Day events like painting and children's story hour. I first visited when the museum opened, and it looks like it is getting better and better each time. Great museum shop
Alex O | Jun 24, 2018
It was worth a visit if your in the area, but not worth the hassle for the sole purpose of visiting this museum. Did like the layout of the museum, although unless you grab a guide book you'll be confused where to start and which direction to follow. The exhibits tell a story of life starting in America to now, the evolution of Judaism and how they have contributed and been affected by American culture. Good overall, but it does make you a little sad.
C Katz | Jul 4, 2018
This is everything you'd want in a history museum: vivid, engaging, and richly furnished. And you can hardly beat the location: in between Independence Hall and the National Constitution Center. (Also near the refreshing US Mint!)
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