Philadelphia Chronology

1681: King Charles II of England granted William Penn a charter to establish what became the Pennsylvania Colony. Penn, a Quaker, set aside 1,280 acres on a peninsula between the Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers for his "City of Brotherly Love."1683: Philadelphia became the capital of Pennsylvania. The city became a haven for those who suffered religious persecution and was known for economic opportunity. 1700s: Philadelphia became the center of colonial protest after Britain adopted taxes and trade policies that angered the American colonists. July 4, 1776: The Second Continental Congress, meeting in what is now Independence Hall, adopted the Declaration of Independence. 1777: The British captured Philadelphia. After France joined the Americans, the British withdrew. 1787: The Constitutional Convention adopted the Constitution of the United States. Mid-1800s: Philadelphia became a center of the antislavery movement. Abolitionist reformer Lucretia C. Mott helped to form the American Anti-Slavery Society. 1980: New City Council formed after Abscam scandal brought down several members of the former council. 1983: W. Wilson Goode elected city's first black mayor; reelected in 1987. May 1985: An attempt by police to evict the radical group MOVE from a house turned into a conflagration that killed seven adults and four children, and destroyed 53 homes. The city later rebuilt the homes. Summer 1990: Much of Independence Mall closed due to lack of funds for repair. September 1990: After running a deficit for three years, Philadelphia's credit rating drops to lowest in the country.

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