The Super Bowl and the Cradle of Liberty

As the Patriots and Eagles prepare for the Super Bowl on February 4, two esteemed history organizations—one in Boston and the other in Philadelphia—place a wager on whose city is the true Cradle of Liberty.

 On 4 February, the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles will battle it out in Minnesota. While bets abound as to what will go down on the football field, two esteemed organizations are focusing on another matter: history. The winning football team will help to answer the age-old question: which Super Bowl city is the true "Cradle of Liberty?" 

In the spirit of friendly competition, Catherine Allgor, President of the Massachusetts Historical Society, and Michael C. Quinn, President and CEO of the Museum of the American Revolution have entered into a wager. When the Patriots win, President Quinn will travel to Boston to deliver a speech on why Boston is the true "Cradle of Liberty" and dine on lobster rolls and Boston cream pie. However, should the Eagles pull off a victory, President Allgor will travel to Philadelphia to speak about the City of Brotherly Love as the "Cradle of Liberty" and dine on cheesesteak.

Monday, April 2, 2018 12:00 PM 

History Museums’ Super Bowl Wager to Be Fulfilled 17 April

A wager made in the spirit of friendly competition in the weeks leading up to Super Bowl LII will soon be fulfilled at the Museum of the American Revolution. Wearing Philadelphia Eagles gear, MHS President Catherine Allgor will deliver a speech defending Philadelphia – not Boston – as the true American “Cradle of Liberty” on Tuesday, 17 April at Noon. 

The event will take place in the Museum’s Liberty Hall and will include a cheesesteak slider lunch with other Philly favorites. It is free for members and $10 for the general public. Tickets can be purchased here. Guests are encouraged to wear Eagles apparel.

Michael C. Quinn, now President Emeritus of the Museum of the American Revolution, will introduce Allgor, who will present a lighthearted discussion on Philadelphia as the true home of American democracy. A question-and-answer session with the audience will follow.

“Catherine is the esteemed president of one of our nation’s great historical institutions, so it is with great anticipation that we await her visit to Philadelphia, during which she will extol Philadelphia and its indispensable role in the American Revolution,” said Quinn. “Not only will she have to eat crow, but cheesesteak.”                                                                          

While Boston has often claimed the mantle of the “Cradle of Liberty,” Allgor will discuss the many iconic Revolutionary moments that took place in Philadelphia, such as the first meeting of the Continental Congress in 1774, and the drafting and signing of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution, among others, that support the claim that Philadelphia is actually the source of our nation’s freedom as the “Headquarters of the American Revolution.”

“As a native-born Pennsylvanian, it is my pleasure to return to my hometown,” said Allgor. “The path from Boston to Philadelphia is a well-worn and notable one. It is my honor to follow in the footsteps of Benjamin Franklin.” Allgor notes, however, that “unlike Dr. Franklin, I will come back to Boston.” 

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