National Museum of American Jewish History

When the National Museum of American Jewish History wanted to transform its presence on Independence Mall, its leadership went to Sidney Kimmel. He heard the Museum’s story – that freedom in America has enabled Jews to achieve success and thereby contribute to this country – as his own story and felt it was the paradigm for what can happen Only in America.

With the unparalleled opportunity to build a new museum overlooking the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and the National Constitution Center, the Foundation took the lead in the development of the new National Museum of American Jewish History. The Sidney Kimmel Foundation’s $25 million gift was the first and jumpstarted a successful campaign to build a new landmark for Philadelphia and for the country.

“Sidney’s leadership helped us realize a spectacular and ambitious vision that is now a cherished landmark in the most sacred square mile of American history,” said Ivy Barsky, the museum’s CEO. “We explore the more than 350-year experience of Jews in America, telling their stories and the many stories of immigrants, freedom and opportunities in this country.”

The Museum’s architecturally stunning, five-story building features a glass façade looking directly at the Liberty Bell. The Museum is a powerful testament to what all free people can accomplish for themselves and society at large.

“The Museum tells the story of what freedom in America has allowed Jews, and for that matter all who were held back by other societies, to gain and contribute to this country,” Barsky said. “Sidney’s personal story fits squarely into the bywords of our Museum: Only in America.”