Situated on 54 acres in West Philadelphia, The Woodlands Cemetery dates back to 1840 when it was founded on the grounds of William Hamilton's estate. The grounds for the estate were purchased by his grandfather, Andrew Hamilton, in 1735 and passed down to William after the deaths of his grandfather and father (also named Andrew).
Hamilton was born into a family whose considerable wealth afforded him the opportunity to live life in the manner of a country gentleman, focusing on his interests in architecture, botany, and landscape design. His botanical collection of more than 10,000 species of plants included the first specimens in America of the Ginkgo Biloba, Sycamore Maple, and plants grown from seeds harvested during Lewis & Clark's expeditions.
Still an active cemetery today, The Woodlands' park-like setting serves as a perfect place to walk, jog, or bike in Philadelphia. On the grounds and in the neighborhood surrounding The Woodlands, Federal, Georgian, and Victorian architecture styles abound as well as The Woodlands' arboretum which is home to more than 1,000 trees.
Getting to The Woodlands is easiest using SEPTA (from City Hall, take the westbound 11, 13, 34, or 36 trolley to the 40th Street Portal Station and cross Woodland Avenue). The grounds are open to the public from dusk til dawn.