March Newsletter

“Illuminating the Life of Louise Reid”

In honor of Women’s History Month, we’re spotlighting the remarkable story of Louise Reid, a Black woman whose life exemplifies resilience and dedication. Historically, domestic work provided one of the few opportunities for Black women in the early 20th century, and in Chestnut Hill, this reality persisted.

Thanks to the diligent work of our Curator/Archivist, Liz Jarvis, and her husband, Andrew Jarvis, we have the privilege of preserving Louise Reid’s documented life story. On January 10, 1988, Andrew Jarvis recorded an oral history interview with Louise, capturing the essence of her experiences.

Click HERE to read the full article written by the Conservancy’s Tatiana Paden.

Save the Train

The Conservancy has been an active participant in the Save the Train Coalition. With the support of our sponsors, speakers, and registrants, our recent virtual Discovering Chestnut Hill “Northwest Philadelphia: Connected by Railroads” lecture with Ted Xaras on Tuesday, March 12, program proceeds will all be donated, totaling $2,000.

Additionally, Conservancy members, including our Lori Salganicoff, joined dozens of others from across Northwest Philadelphia, including Linda Bell (pictured below), on a trip to Harrisburg to advocate for public transportation.


Lori shared, “Our communities were fundamentally shaped around the train lines introduced in the 19th century. As the City increasingly encourages residential density around our public transit hubs and seeks to reduce car emissions, our train lines must also be a fundamental part of our future. They must be better funded and more frequently chosen by all of us.”


Following up on the success of our program on March 12, the Conservancy is hosting a self-guided Discovering Chestnut Hill walk to three stops along the Chestnut Hill West railroad on Saturday, April 20 (rain date is Saturday, April 27) from 1:00 – 3:00 PM at Chestnut Hill West, Highland, and St. Martins.

Docents will be at each station to share the station’s history and the current stewardship of the landscape. Register at the link below!

Register here

Registration is free; however, we offer a suggested donation option when registering for the event. Any contributions received will be allocated to the Save the Train campaign.

Saving Historic Buildings


Germantown Trust “Wells Fargo,” 8527 Germantown Avenue

As an exciting new chapter begins for its possible reuse, a storied and historically significant part of the Germantown Avenue commercial corridor may soon be added to the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places.  Almost 100 years after it was built for the Germantown Trust Company, the former Wells Fargo Bank building was nominated to the Register by the Chestnut Hill Conservancy in February.

Buildings under consideration for Historic Register listing, such as this, are provisionally protected until the Historical Commission makes a final decision. Read more about the building’s history and significance HERE.

208-210 Rex Avenue

The Conservancy is proud to have protected this historic property in 2017 and is grateful to have been working for years with the neighbor’s group, the Rex Avenue Neighbors Association (RANA), on their efficient and effective advocacy on behalf of neighbors. RANA, the How Group, and the property’s owners seem close to a resolution on the final elements of the project to adapt the historic mansion and sensitively add new housing to the adjacent open space.  Read more about the project HERE and the property’s history HERE.

Chestnut Hill Hospital Women’s Center, 8811-35 Germantown Avenue

On Friday, April 12, the Philadelphia Historical Commission will hear and possibly decide on designating the Chestnut Hill Women’s Center as historic. This former home and doctor’s office stands as the last intact historic structure on the Hospital’s campus.

The designation of this or any building does not prohibit future alterations. Many designated buildings have received approval from the Historical Commission for significant additions that prioritize preserving the visible parts of properties from public vantage points. The Conservancy would endorse a compromise and balance that safeguards the building’s most publicly visible aspects while allowing for sensitive alterations at the rear to accommodate needs and uses.

Read more about the property’s history HERE.

Please save the date and register for the meeting. The link to attend the meeting will be posted on the Conservancy’s homepage when released by the Historical Commission.

Greylock Mansion, 209 West Chestnut Hill Avenue

The Conservancy is glad to share some Greylock FAQs HERE to give you a fuller understanding of efforts and constraints concerning the property’s past and future and related roles and responsibilities of the Chestnut Hill Conservancy and Friends of the Wissahickon.

We encourage you to explore these FAQs to learn more about our commitment to conservation and preservation. The FAQ was crafted to describe what we can do while respecting the private nature of agreements with easement owners.  That said, if you still have questions about any issues, please contact Lori Salganicoff at lori@chconservancy.org, and we will update the FAQ wherever possible.

Thank you for your continued support as we strive to preserve and protect our community’s invaluable assets.

Save the date for our Spring Gala – June 8


Join the Chestnut Hill Conservancy on Saturday, June 8, with our gracious hosts Sara Lapham and Jeff Roeseler for a gorgeous evening in Wyndmoor on the grounds of a beautiful historic Norman-style home by architect Robert Rodes McGoodwin.

This year, we will honor the remarkable Charles Dilks and recognize his decades-long commitment to conserving, preserving, and protecting our natural resources.

The Gala is our only fundraiser of the year. Benefactor tickets are available now, and patron tickets are available on the website at the end of next week. There is still time to sponsor the Gala. Please reach out to Ashley Maass, Development Manager, for more information.

Spring Programs

Get ready for an exciting lineup of spring programs with the Chestnut Hill Conservancy! From farm tours to virtual lectures, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. You never know when another program might spring up, so subscribe to our Programs and Events calendar on our website and stay tuned!


Here’s what’s coming up:

Join us for these captivating events and uncover the rich history, preservation initiatives, and commitment to conservation in Chestnut Hill. Don’t miss out, register today! If you have any questions, please email Chrissy Clawson.

Our programs are made possible through the generous support of our local businesses and members.

The Discovering Chestnut Hill Tour and Lecture Series are proudly sponsored by John B. Ward & Co. Arborists, with additional support from Cawley Masonry. The Ask the Experts free program is brought to you by event sponsor Harth Builders, with support from Wallace Landscape Associates, and is done in collaboration with the Chestnut Hill Community Association.

Friends Events

Friends of Pastorius Park‘s first volunteer event is our Spring clean-up scheduled for Saturday, April 6, from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM, with Sunday, April 7 as the rain date.


Please help Chestnut Hill Tree Tenders get more residential tree applications in for the fall. Apply by Monday, April 15, to get a free street tree for your home this fall. See the link below for an online application, or contact the Chestnut Hill Community Association for a printout version by calling 215-248-8810 or emailing info@chestnuthill.org.

Request a tree application

Meet our new Development Manager, Ashley Maass


“It’s been an exciting few months since joining the Conservancy. We’re currently gearing up for our only fundraiser of the year, the Conservancy’s Spring Gala, on Saturday, June 8. Since January, I’ve had the opportunity to meet with volunteers, longtime friends, and partners- new and old,” said Ashley.  “It’s been inspiring to hear why the Conservancy’s mission resonates with so many—whether through the Archives, preserving historical treasures, or supporting green spaces for future generations. With over 25 years of connection to this community, I’m excited to deepen relationships with those passionate about stewardship and our shared legacy.”

Click HERE to learn more about Ashley.

In the News

Events Calendar 

Support the Conservancy

If you’re interested in volunteering for future Conservancy programs and events, contact Programs and Communications Manager Chrissy Clawson.


In addition to supporting our work, did you know that members receive special benefits like discounted admission to programs and free research in the archives? Join today!


Your support is a commitment to celebrating and sustaining the history, architecture, and open green space of Chestnut Hill and surrounding communities in the Wissahickon Watershed.



bowman%20logo.jpg LOGO-Dennis-Meyer-2017.png





Great architecture is in our nature.

215-247-9329 | 8708 Germantown Avenue, Phila., PA 19118 | info@chconservancy.org 

Email Facebook Instagram Website YouTube