Packer Park: A Smorgasbord of Local Swedish History

Curator Carrie Hogan in front of a bronze Swedish map in one of the galleries.

The American Swedish Historical Museum located at 1900 Pattison Ave. hosts 12 different galleries full of Swedish artifacts, architecture and history.  The museum is tucked in the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Park in a large building constructed in 1926.  A fusion of art deco and Swedish design make the interior of the building a site in itself.

Curator Carrie Hogan stands in front of a bronze Swedish map in one of the galleries.

A knowledgeable staff gives guided tours Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. The next exhibition at the museum is “Knitting Along the Viking Trail,” which begins March 20.

Carrie Hogan, curator of the museum, explained how the museum came about. A Swedish-American scholar, Amandus Johnson studied the settlement of Swedes in the Delaware Valley in the early 20th century.  “He decided that this country really needed a museum that would highlight the achievements of that colonial era and then achievements of Swedes and Swedish-Americans throughout time,” Hogan said.

Anyone interested in local history, architecture or Swedish culture can gain something by visiting this museum. First time vistor Eli Lipa, 28, said, “I learned a lot. I was surprised that the Swedish people were the first to settle in this area and the friendship they had with the Lenape Indians.”

Vistor Eli Lipa said he enjoyed his tour.

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