One of the things Andrew and I have talked about seeing in Philly for a long time was the Mütter Museum. It’s one of the offbeat museums that we’re attracted to across the country, though a bit more legitimate (or at least more successful) than some of the others we’ve gone to (for example, the Dime Museum in Baltimore and the Museum of Questionable Medical Devices in Minnesota both closed a couple years after we had visited them).
Unfortunately, the M&uulm;tter doesn’t allow pictures inside the museum. Or maybe that’s fortunate. It’s a museum of medical curiosities, with loads of specimens collected through the 19th century. Andrew and I wandered on our own, taking in whatever interested each of us. At one point I passed him as I was walking into another room, and he just looked at me, shook his head, and said, “So much can go wrong.”
There was an extensive skull collection from a variety of people who died in a lot of different ways and with different ailments evidenced in their skulls. I was struck by the side-by-side skeletons of two women, one who had regularly worn a tightly-laced corset and one who did not the damage to the ribcage was spectacular. Also noteworthy was the drawers full of things people have swallowed. Each drawer was labeled with things such as, “hardware,” “buttons,” “pins,” and “toys.”
[The Mütter Museum was free with our Philadelphia Pass, a $15 value.]
From there, we thought we might try to take in part of The Barnes Foundation Museum. However, when we got there, we found that they sold timed tickets, and the next entrance was a couple hours off. I didn’t really feel like waiting that long, especially since the museum would close just a couple hours after we got in, so we took a pass.
Instead, we hopped the hop-on-hop-off bus for the last time, and circled around the loop past the Philadelphia Art Museum where I snapped a few pictures from the bus.
We rode the bus almost to the end of their tour route and hopped off to see Elfreth’s Alley. This is the oldest continuously-inhabited residential neighborhood in the U.S.
From there, we weren’t too far from our hotel, so we walked back. On the way, I made us stop at the Besty Ross House gift shop to pick up a scrapbook kit I had seen there yesterday, but didn’t want to carry around all day. We also stopped at a comic book and game store, grabbing The Reef 2-player game that we played in our hotel when we got back.
Final tally on the Philadelphia Pass?
Paid: $80 for a 3-day pass (which was an internet special that got us a 3-day pass for the price of a 2-day pass)
Which got us:
- 3-day pass on the Big Bus Tour, $48 value
- The Franklin Institute admission, $18.50 value
- Betsy Ross House admission, $5 value
- Eastern State Penitentiary admission, $14 value
- Ghost Tour of Philadelphia, $17 value
- Mütter Museum admission, $15 value
Grand total: $117.50
So, even at full price of $100, the 3-day pass would have been worth the money. (No, I’m not being paid by the Philly Pass folks I was just curious to see if we got our money’s worth!)