National Museum of American Jewish History, 101 S. Independence Mall E. at jct. 5th and Market sts., is a Smithsonian affiliate and the only major museum dedicated to chronicling the American Jewish experience. The museum's four floors contain documents, artifacts, photographs, films and interactive exhibits preserving the history of Jewish life from the arrival of the first Jewish community in New York in 1654 to the present. The first floor exhibits feature items from prominent Jewish icons, including a pipe that belonged to Einstein and a piano that belonged to American composer Irving Berlin. Some of the topics covered include early Jewish lifestyles, the evolution of religious practices, and immigration obstacles and discrimination.
Guided tours are available. Food is available. Time: Allow 1 hour, 30 minutes minimum.
$12; $11 (ages 13-21 and 65+); free (ages 0-12 and active military with ID). Reservations are recommended. Parking: Validation provided for a discount at The Bourse garage at 400 Ranstead St.
Hours: Tues.-Fri. 10-5, Sat.-Sun. 10-5:30 (also Wed. 5-8, Memorial Day-Labor Day). Highlight tours are given at 11:30 and 2:30. Closed Jan. 1, first two days of Passover, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and Thanksgiving. Schedule subject to change.