Industrial Past, The

Produced by: 
Cardinal Bevilacqua Community Center with Scribe Video Center
9 min 41 sec

This video is available for purchase as part of a Precious Places Community History Project Vol.3 compilation DVD.

Kensington may be Philadelphia's quintessential post-industrial neighborhood. Once a teeming textile hub of the city and indeed the region, Kensington's wealth and quality of life declined in the 1950s and 1960s as factories moved elsewhere. While the neighborhood has developed a reputation as one of Philadelphia's most neglected areas, residents tell of a different Kensington. Recently, the neighborhood has also been experiencing something of a rebirth. The Cardinal Bevilacqua Community Center epitomizes this trend. Offering after-school programs, adult education and job placement to the area's racially diverse community, the center serves an important function in a changing urban landscape. The Industrial Past offers a colorful virtual tour of the neighborhood through the voices of its residents. Older neighbors recount the neighborhood's past vibrancy and the attractive aspects that they say sometimes go missing in media coverage of the neighborhood. Younger residents discuss Kensington's present condition and future, offering an intimate view of this vibrant but often misunderstood neighborhood.