Historical Society of Pennsylvania

About the Project

Duke Riley focuses on the tiny yet contentious island in the Delaware River known as Petty’s Island. In the past the island served as a safe haven for pirates, illegal immigrants, gambling, and duels. In the 1850s, Irish immigrant Ralston Laird settled on the island and declared himself king. For this project, Riley tracked down Laird descendants and “reclaims” the island on behalf of the family. Items from Riley’s project—including artifacts excavated from the island and decorative plates with images of Laird descendants—will be on display.

The Historical Society of Pennsylvania

Founded in 1824 in Philadelphia, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania is one of the oldest historical societies and one of the largest family history libraries in the nation. HSP is second only to the Library of Congress for material on the nation’s founding and is the country’s third most popular destination for genealogical study. Following a merger with the Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies, the society is also a leading repository of immigrant and ethnic history. With more than 21 million records including manuscripts, graphics, and books that span over 350 years of history, HSP is an invaluable resource for historical research.

Out of Print

Program support for Out of Print is provided by The Barra Foundation, Inc. Out of Print is a collaboration between Philagrafika and five historic collections in Philadelphia including: the American Philosophical Society, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, the Independence Seaport Museum, the Rosenbach Museum & Library; and the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology & Anthropology.

Venue Information

Historical Society location:

1300 Locust St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107


Please check back for more information about Duke Riley Out of Print program locations.


Phone: (215) 732-6200







Tuesday, Thursday 12:30-5:30 (last admittance at 4:45 p.m.); Wednesday 12:30-8:30 (last admittance at 7:45 p.m.); Friday 10am-5:30pm. Closed Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays.




To view the Out of Print exhibition there will be a $1 charge. Normal daily admission to use the library for non-members adults: $6.00. Daily admission for non-member students: $3.00 (with current student identification card).