Christian C. Sanderson Museum
Box 153
1755 Creek Road
Chadds Ford, PA 19317
(610) 388-6545

Places Nearby:
Brandywine River Museum
Brandywine Battlefield
Chaddsford Historical Society
Newlin Gristmill
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Other States:

While writing I try to remain as anonymous as possible, so that the information the reader needs is just sort of "there" with no intrusion from me. Once in a while I'll break the rule. The Christian C. Sanderson Museum prompts me to do this because it appeals to me so strongly that I wish I'd known the man.

Museums tend to collect things that have obvious significance -- social, historical, or aesthetic. Nothing wrong with this at all. But the items collected by Sanderson for 75 years had absolutely no significance to anyone but him, and he added this significance with such fondness and warmth that when you read the notes he attached to these objects you'll get the idea that famous collections of monumental objects have somehow missed the point.

Visitors here will find a number of Wyeth paintings and sketches, for Sanderson was a close friend of the family (see Brandywine River Museum). Beyond these, however, the Museum contains few objects d' art -- just all sorts of interesting stuff. A tiny sampling of the more than eight rooms full of Sanderson's mementoes includes:

  • Piece of bandage placed on Lincoln
  • Covered wagon grease pot
  • Piece of the bomber that crashed into the Empire State Building
  • Dyed Easter eggs from 1886
  • Sanderson's first pay envelope from Wanamaker's store
  • Melted ice from the South Pole
  • Penny run over by the Lincoln funeral train
  • Sand from the digging of the Panama Canal

It took his friends five years to clean out Sanderson's house after he died. His collections were preserved, as was his wish. Thousands of items like those above can be found here. The result has got to be the most personal museum in the world.

Though at first glance Christian Sanderson may have been seen as eccentric, he was certainly not a hermit gathering up meaningless bits of trash. He was a school teacher, a musician who taught square dance and square dance calling, an actor, a colorful lecturer, a radio broadcaster for more than 40 years, a historian, and, yes, a collector.Individuals, families and groups are welcome here.

There is no admission -- a policy established by Sanderson himself, but donations help keep the place going. School Groups and others will be rewarded with the most intimate look at the life of an everyday man who marked his time and ours with the things that the rest of us have missed.

Hours: Open March thru November Thursday through Sunday, 12pm - 4:pm. Group tours other days by appointment.
Children under 12 FREE
Group Reservations: At least 1 week in advance.
Lunch: Picnic at nearby Brandywine Battlefield Park, local restaurants.
Handicapped Access: Not accessible.
Directions: Rt. 30 west to Rt. 1 south to Concordville. Rt. 322/Rt. 1 west to Rt. 1 south. After passing Brandywine Battlefield turn right onto Rt. 100 north. Go about 100 yards. 30 - 60 minutes west of Philadelphia.

Copyright © 1996-2014 by Patrick Tadeushuk. All Rights Reserved.