Penn Library

Marian Anderson: A Life in Song

Philadelphia Revisited, 1954

On 31 July 1954 Marian Anderson returned to Philadelphia to dedicate the Marian Anderson Recreation Center at 17th and Fitzwater streets. Her old neighbors turned out by the hundreds. According to The Evening Bulletin, "the singer, in big-rimmed red straw hat and print dress, frequently wiped her brow as she greeted a constant procession of friends and former neighbors." Look Magazine prepared a photographic essay of the return visit. In the following photographs Marian Anderson can be seen sitting with her mother on the steps of the latter's home on South Martin Street, walking with her sister on a South Philadelphia street, talking to a youngster in a Philadelphia public school, and singing in the Union Baptist Church.

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