Bolt of Lightning... A Memorial to Benjamin Franklin


Isamu Noguchi first conceived the idea of this stainless-steel sculpture, which references Franklin's famous experiment of flying a kite in an electrical storm, for an exhibition in Fairmount Park in 1933. However, it took until 1984 before his design was constructed between the base of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge and Franklin Sq.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Philadelphia attractions

1. Franklin Square

0.07 MILES

Ringed by busy roads, this square – one of the originals from William Penn's masterplan for his new city – feels somewhat cut off from the other sights of…

2. Benjamin Franklin Bridge

0.09 MILES

For breathtaking views of the city and Delaware River it's possible to walk or cycle across this 1.8-mile, 800,000-ton suspension bride, which was the…

3. National Constitution Center

0.14 MILES

This whiz-bang museum makes the US Constitution jump off the page, starting with a dramatic theater-in-the-round presentation by a single actor relating…

4. United States Mint

0.16 MILES

Take the 45-minute self-guided tour to see coins being made (they can churn out 50 million of them per day), and to admire the Tiffany mosaics inside this…

5. Painted Bride Art Center

0.16 MILES

Famous for its facade covered with the mosaics of Isaiah Zagar, this alternative arts space was founded in 1969 by a group of visual artists and developed…

6. Christ Church Burial Ground

0.21 MILES

Hard to believe, but back in the early 18th century this was the outskirts of town, thus the ideal location for a burial ground. The cemetery is the final…

8. Arch Street Meeting House

0.25 MILES

Built in 1804 on land donated by William Penn in 1701, this is the largest Quaker meetinghouse in the US. The furniture is original and predates the…