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World Listening Day: Turtle River

Schuylkill River, Philadelphia.
Schuylkill River, Philadelphia.

Our next visit for World Listening Day 2015 is to the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, as heard and reimagined by local artist Michael McDermott, who tells us something of the history of the location you’re about to hear:

“The Schuylkill River runs along the western edge of Philadelphia. The Lenape Indians called the river Tool-pay Hanna, which means “Turtle River”. Despite several hundred years of industry and pollution along the banks of the river there is still active wild life.”

“Like many urban rivers it became polluted with oil and coal in the 18th, 19th and 20th century. There’s some effort to clean the restore the river, but it’s still along way from being drinkable.”

“One of my favorite spots is near my home in the Manayunk section of Philadelphia where I took this recording. Turtles, frogs, insects and a myriad of birds call this stretch of the river home.”

“The river is a far cry from when the Lenape use to swim and drink from the river (Manayunk is also a Lenape phrase that means “where we go to drink”).”

“My hope is that the sounds of the river will remind people of the natural beauty that has remained unchanged for thousands of years.”

City version:


Memory version: