Next Meeting

The next Member Meeting:

June 13, 7:00 PM
Cavanaugh's Headhouse

Friends of Independence Park

Public Welcome


Download the latest NFTGA newsletter, The National Standard, here.


June 13, 7:00 PM
Cavanaugh's Headhouse

Friends of Independence Park

July 11, 7:00 PM
Cavanaugh's Headhouse

George Leader, The Arch St. Project


August 8, 7:00 PM
Arch St. Meetinghouse

Tour of the Meetinghouse and update

APT Meetings after tour

September 12, 7:00 PM
Cavanaugh's Headhouse

  Final Prep for Sept 22 Great Tour


★ ★ ★

October 10, 7:00 PM
Location TBA

APT 10th Anniversary Celebration!


December 12, 7:00 PM
Cavanaugh's Head House

APT holiday party and elections



What happens in Philadelphia reaches everywhere!
       In 1755, the first 1,400 French Canadian Catholics were rounded up by British Troops in Newfoundland and expelled from Acadia, packed into sloops and sent down the eastern shore of the colonies, an early form of ethnic cleansing.
       How would the American colonies, themselves beneficiaries of immigration, react when a significant mass of refugees sought our shores?  The timing could not have been more awkward for French Catholics to show up in these Protestant British colonies.  The French and Indian War had turned ugly, with the humiliating defeat and death of General Braddock earlier that year.
      A majority of this first wave of Acadians was destined for Philadelphia,  hoping that Penn's famous policy of toleration would afford them refuge.  Two of the ships bound for Philadelphia sank at sea, taking 500 lives.  The Hannah, the Three Friends, and the Swan made it to the Delaware River on November 20, 1755.  Other ships had been turned away by more staunchly anti-Catholic Boston and New York. 
      Pennsylvania's cautious Governor Morris finally allowed the bedraggled passengers to disembark - not in the city but on Province Island near the mouth of the Schuylkill River - now home to Urban Outfitters.
     It took another year for the Acadians to be absorbed throughout eastern Pennsylvania.  Anthony Benezet was commissioned to build a series of "the French Homes" - a row of wooden cottages between 5th and 6th on Pine Street. 
     Meanwhile, the vast majority of the Acadians, an estimated 10,000 more, skirted the British colonies completely and headed right for New Orleans - bringing the cuisine and culture of the Cajuns.
     Longfellow's 1847 poem brought new interest to this series of events, telling the fictional story of Evangeline, the beautiful bride-to-be, wrenched by the British troops from Gabriel's arms. He was summarily packed on one of those first ships, and Evangeline spent her long life looking for her lover. Her search finally ended in a Philadelphia poorhouse, where he died in her arms. 



What visitors are saying about APT certified guides:

• The tour was the highlight of our visit

 Our guide was funny, fascinating and informative

 These are hands down, the best tour guides anywhere  -National Committee on U.S./China

 APT certified guides are the guides to follow  -Mike Newall, The Inquirer

 Philly guides are America's top guides





APT Logo

The Association of Philadelphia Tour Guides (APT) was founded in 2008 to bring professional and volunteer guides together, to act as a voice for our membership, and to ensure a high quality experience to every visitor to our city. The Association conducts the Education and Certification Program for Philadelphia city guides.  APT, with a membership of about 180 as of January 2018, is a Pennsylvania non-profit organization.

APT knows that Philadelphia tour guides take great pride in the services they provide both visitors and local residents in exploring the rich historical, architectural and cultural resources of Philadelphia.

                 Contact Ed Mauger, President, with any questions at 




APT members at Pennsylvania Hospital with Stacey Peeples





If you're a Philadelphia tour guide or are involved in the city's tourism industry, APT has a lot to offer you. In addition to individual membership, APT also offers a Corporate Associate Membership for corporations and organizations. See our Membership page and our Supporters and Benefits page for information on APT membership levels and perks.





APT members meet on the second Wednesday of each month at 7:00 pm. See "NEXT MEETING" on this page, left, for the date, time and place. Each meeting begins with a presentation by a guest speaker on topics ranging from 18th century clothing to current tourism issues.

You're welcome to join us anytime for convivial company, good food, fascinating presentations and lively discussions. We encourage you to attend as our guest.

To learn about other APT special events, workshops and speakers, see "UPCOMING" on this page, left.


 Betsy Ross welcomes APT members to her home and shop





In 2011, APT began testing and certifying Philadelphia tour guides for basic knowledge of Philadelphia history, people and sites. As of 2018, APT has certified 174 women and men for competency in guiding in the city of Philadelphia.

The next APT Certification Exam is scheduled for 4:30 pm, Wednesday, April 11, 2018.  Note earlier start time.

APT has also established a program to identify and certify Master Tour Guides. These are veteran guides who have progressed well beyond the level of basic competence, who can be depended upon to meet and exceed client expectations under any circumstances.

For more information about APT certification programs, or to apply for the Master Guide Program, visit the Certification page on this site.





To promote high professional standards we have published a Tour Guides Handbook, an invaluable resource to anyone in the Philadelphia tourism industry.  The APT Handbook is considered one of the nation's most comprehensive and inclusive sources of information, a model for other city guide services. 

For more information on the Association of Philadelphia Tour Guides Handbook and and computer, tablet and phone friendly pdf, see the Handbook page, or purchase a copy at the APT Store.





Through our membership in the National Federation of Tour Guide Associations, APT is able to offer its members liability insurance with the Hartford Insurance Group at a low cost of $86 a year. You can download a FAQ or pay for insurance for 2018 at the APT Store.





APT maintains an informal, un-moderated email listserv for members. It's a great way to share notices of events you're involved in, recommend upcoming lectures or programs of interest to tour guides, or to post a question you may have about tour guiding or Philadelphia—tour guides love to share information!

The list is open to all members, but, in order to prevent unwanted spam to our membership and protect their privacy, members must subscribe to the list to either post or to receive notices.

To subscribe, simply send an email to with SUBSCRIBE in the subject or in the body of the email. After you've subscribed you can post to everyone on the list by sending your notice to





Do you want up to the minute APT news, comments and insights? Click on the icon to the left to visit us on Facebook. Are you worried about privacy? You don't even have to be a Facebook member to view our page.