Liberty to Go to See


Our award-winning dramatic event returns for a limited time!

Wednesday, June 12 – Friday, June 14, 2019 | 7 PM

Saturday, June 15, 2019 | 12 PM & 3 PM as part of Historic Germantown’s annual Juneteenth Celebration

James Smith on the front steps of the Main House. Courtesy of Cliveden of the National Trust.

Tickets: $15 | https://2019-liberty-to-go-to-see.eventbrite.com

Space is limited, advanced purchase is required. Performances are 90 minutes & begin in the Carriage House

(98 East Cliveden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19144) 


Cliveden is excited to announce the return of its award-winning dramatic event, Liberty to Go to See! Based on research from the Chew Family Papers and with a script written by students from Philadelphia Young Playwrights, Liberty to Go to See features the lives of the indentured and enslaved workers for the Chew family from the 1760s through the 1860s—men and women whose stories are rarely heard. The title comes from a letter from Joseph, an enslaved worker, to his master, Benjamin Chew, requesting permission to accept employment closer to his wife. The play contrasts the ideals of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness by showing the paradoxes of racial discrimination, class divisions, gender roles, and the struggle for freedom.

Directed by award-winning actor and director Johnnie Hobbs, Liberty to Go to See takes place in the Cliveden Main House and is narrated by James Smith, a free African American servant. Audiences will gather in the Cliveden Carriage House before the dramatic event for activities and will then follow James through the house, watching episodes of daily life between the Chews and their workers.

Due to the intimate nature of the event, audiences are limited to 20 people. Tickets are $15 per person and can be purchased through Eventbrite link above or through Cliveden’s profile on Facebook and Instagram. The play is not recommended for children 12 years and under. 

Liberty to Go to See is funded by The Haley Foundation