American Girl Wiki

This is a list of specifically named locations in the Addy Series.

Banneker House

An elegant resort hotel catering specifically to black middle-class guests. The dining room serves fine treats and the family go there to have ice cream.

The dining room is covered in floral paper and the curtains are a soft butter yellow. The tables have white tablecloths and flowers on the sideboard. Addy thinks that Master Stevens didn't even have such a fine place.

The Banneker house actually existed and was named after Benjamin Banneker.

Butcher Shop

A local butcher shop. Addy overhears about Lincoln's assassination here from the butcher and Mrs. Andersen.

Carpentry Shop

A carpentry shop owned by Miles Roberts. Ben Walker gets a job here in Happy Birthday, Addy!, but does not have the job by the start of Shadows on Society Hill.

Cape Island

A seaside location in New Jersey (now known as Cape May). Ben gets a summer job working on summer houses and a hotel for the railroad; Ruth, Addy, and Esther go to visit over the Fourth of July Holiday in 1866 during Addy's Summer Place. It is mentioned again in Shadows on Society Hill when Poppa says he learned some elaborate woodworking skills by working on the fancy houses there the previous summer.

Railroad Camp

A camp site near Poppa's work where the family stays.

Carter Plantation

A plantation next to the Stevens Plantation. Elizabeth Cope--real name Bessie--grew up here and ran away to freedom when she was sixteen, leaving her mother Matty behind. It is mentioned in Shadows on Society Hill.


A small cave in the woods where Addy and Ruth hide while running to take their freedom.

City Hospital

A hospital where Addy and Sam frequently stop to look for their family. Although no hospital in Philadelphia had that name, this likely references Pennsylvania Hospital, which is located in the city center.

Mr. Delmonte's Secondhand Shop

A secondhand shop owned by Mr. Delmonte. Addy and Ruth often find secondhand goods, such as clothes, pots, and pans. in Addy's Surprise Addy sees a red scarf in the window and tries to save up the twenty cents to buy it, but ends up donating all her tip money instead to the Freedman's Fund.

First Baptist Church

A church that is near City Hospital. Addy stops here after a visit to the hospital, and thus finds Auntie Lula and Esther that night.

Ford's Dress Shop

Mrs. Ford's dress shop is where Ruth Walker works and she and Addy initially live together in the upstairs garret. It's located on South Street and is a small dress shop crammed with cloth, thread, ribbon, yarn, feathers, and boxes. Mrs. Ford and Ruth sit in the back to work.


Behind the dress shop is an alley. People throw things into the alley such as table scraps and dirty water, and rats prowl at night.


An upstairs room above Ford's Dress Shop, three flights up dark, steep stairs. It's smaller than the the cabin on the plantation and has a table, two chairs, a single bed, and a stove. It also has a window. Addy and Ruth Walker live together in the upstairs garret from the time they arrive in Philadelphia until they move into the boarding house with Ben shortly after his arrival. Addy initially spends most of her day here, as she has nothing to do until school starts; later, she is invited to stay downstairs in the shop after school as long as she keeps busy practicing sewing.


The nearest privy, which is used by ten families. It smells awful and is located in a dark filthy alley.


A large public garden a mile from the boarding house. It rents out plots, and the Walkers rent a plot to grow vegetables, to raise money to help them search for their relatives.

Gifford Plantation

A plantation in South Carolina, owned by Master Gifford. Until their escape, Ruth had never been any further away from the Stevens' plantation than there.

By the end of the war, so many enslaved people have escaped that they cannot be caught.

Mr. and Mrs. Golden's Boarding House

The boarding house owned by Mr. and Mrs. Golden. The Walker family lives here from the time Ben Walker arrives (after the events of Addy's Surprise) until the events of Shadows on Society Hill.

Howell Mansion

A large mansion home with a brass knocker on the front. Inside is a large dark staircase, a large hearth fireplace, and a living room with a pink couch and chairs. The house uses gas instead of kerosene lamps and when Addy is there to deliver the package, she sees a decorated Christmas tree that reaches nearly to the ceiling.

Institute for Colored Youth

The Institute for Colored Youth is a secondary school of higher education in Philadelphia, PA. Miss Dunn attended this school to become a teacher, and Addy is recommended to this school in High Hopes for Addy and begins to attend by the fall of 1866 (as stated in Shadows on Society Hill). Initially paid for by funding from principals and Quakers, now the enrolled students pay for it using annual fees of ten dollars a year (equivalent to about $173 in 2022).

The oldest African-American institution of higher learning, the school was relocated in 1902 and is now known as Cheyney University of Pennsylvania located outside of Philadelphia proper. The original building is now used as condos but is on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

The Libby

A ship that arrives in Philadelphia the same day as the Liberty. It docks at pier thirty-five, and Sarah Moore and Mabel Moore end up there at first.

The Liberty

The ship that Addy and her mother arrive to Philadelphia on. It docked on pier three.

J. J. Lyons

A colored ice cream parlor.

Milner's Builders

A builder's shop mentioned in Shadows on Society Hill. Papa does some woodworking on an overhang on this building. Although he is not consistently employed by this builder, he hopes that this job will demonstrate his skills and the owner will call him back for future work.

Miss Caroline's House

Miss Caroline's house is located where the railroad tracks cross; Miss Caroline lives alone. It is a white house with red shutters on a small hill, and illustrations show it as about two stories; there is a small kitchen and Addy finds the house to be welcoming and warm.

Natkin's Confectionery Shop

A confectionery shop owned by Mr. Natkin, a white man. The shop sells ice cream as well as other treats, but does not serve black people.


The Philadelphia pier is where many newly freed people first arrive in Philadelphia. To Addy, the pier initially is a nosy place full of ships and people moving about.

Radisson House

A house that Albert Radisson inherits on Society Hill when his uncle, Frank Radisson, dies. He hires Ben Walker to work for him and invites the Walkers to move into what was previously the servant's house directly behind it. The brick house has three stories with multiple windows and a shuttered back porch with trellises covered in wisteria vines, and there is a wrought-iron fence around the property. The house is large and well decorated, with gas lighting throughout.

Former Servant's House

The former servant's house the Walkers move into. It is located in the backyard, smaller but made of the same brick as the large front house, and alongside a shed with the buildings separated by a small yard. There are two stories. The first story is a separate kitchen with an iron stove and a sitting parlor; the house is gas lit and has gas lamps on the wall. There are two bedrooms upstairs and a garret under the roof. The floors are shiny hardwood and the furniture is nice--even better than Mrs. Ford's. There is a private privy in the back of the house.


A shed near the servant's house in the backyard. Addy enjoys playing in it to her parents; she is actually getting information about Mary Tucker and bringing her food. Elizabeth Cope hides her choker in the shed to implicate Addy in stealing it in an attempt to have the Walkers evicted.

Hidden Pathway

Unbeknownst to Albert Radisson, a hidden passage is located on the porch with the door underneath a round rug showing a blue sky. The passageway--recently built--leads to an underground tunnel and another set of stairs, which leads to a hidden room. To hide the passage, two ropes are attached: a white one to close the hatch door and a straw rope to pull the rug back into place. The passageway was built by Frank Radisson to aid in helping black people who were running to freedom.

Hidden Room

A small hidden room in the attic, containing a simple bed, table and chair; it is accessible through the hidden passage. Built by Frank Radisson to harbor people who ran from enslavement, Mary Tucker hides here after a bounty is put on her head for being a former Union spy.

Railroad Tracks

There are railroad tracks about ten miles north of the Gifford Plantation. Miss Caroline's house is located where they cross another set of tracks.


A wide river near the Gifford plantation that Addy and Ruth must cross.

Seventh Ward

A poverty stricken section of Philadelphia, located near Lombard and South Streets.

More information can be seen on The Ward: Race and Class in Du Bois' Seventh Ward, though this focuses on the area in the late 19th century.

Gillis Alley

The most poverty stricken part of the Seventh Ward. Many poor blacks live in the area--nearly all of them formerly enslaved--and Addy finds conditions to be as bad as on the plantations.

Idey Station House

A station house in the area. The old woman that Elizabeth Cope financially supports lives here in number nine.

Sixth Street School

Addy's first school. Other students include Sarah Moore and Harriet Davis. Miss Dunn is the teacher of Addy's class.

While Sixth Street School's name is not authentic, the school may be based on the Lombard Street Colored School, which was located at Sixth Street near Lombard Street. It was the city's first known public school for Black students.

Sharpener Shop

A shop near the Secondhand Shop, for sharpening knives and scissors.

Shiloh Baptist Church

A church where Elizabeth Greenfield performs a concert in Shadows of Society Hill. Addy and Ruth Walker attend it.

Shiloh Baptist Church is a real church in Philadelphia. It was founded to serve South Philadelphia African-Americans in 1842, though the congregation is no longer in its original location.

Society Hill

The high-society part of town in Philadelphia. Addy almost always delivers packages to houses located here, as most of Mrs. Ford's clientele is from there. Among its residents, the Howells live here in a large mansion. M'dear told Addy that when she was young, she worked as a chore girl on Society Hill.

The book Shadows of Society Hill takes place here. The Walkers are invited to live in the servants' house behind Mr. Radisson's

Stevens' Plantation

The tobacco and cotton plantation where Addy and her family were enslaved, owned by Master Stevens. The plantation is located roughly twenty miles north of Raleigh, North Carolina.[1]

Along with the list of locations noted below, there is a well, a barn, other large fields such as for animals, orchards, and the overseer's house. Twenty-two people are enslaved on the plantation initially including the Walker family, Solomon Morgan, and Lula Morgan.

Big House

The large house for Master Steven (and his presumed, but unseen family). There is a dining room where Addy serves Master Steven his midday dinner meals. The parlor is the only location with a gas lamp;[2] the rest of the house is lit by candles and kerosene lanterns.


A small brick building separate from the big house, where Auntie Lula cooks meals for Master Stevens.


Large fields where tobacco and cotton are grown. The tobacco plants are wormed and inspected by enslaved children including Addy, while the cotton fields are worked by adults.


The small cabins, or "slave quarters", where the enslaved people live.

In the Walkers' cabin there is a hearth and three cornhusk filled pallets: one for Ben and Ruth, one for Sam, and one for Addy and Esther. Bedbugs are present, and there are no windows.

Lula and Solomon have their own cabin.

Trinity A.M.E. Church

The local black church the Walkers attend, Trinity African Methodist Episcopal Church. Reverend Drake is the minister. Men and boys sit on the left and women and girls sit on the right. There's a pipe organ at the front and space for the choir and pulpit, and in the basement is a fellowship hall. Over the pulpit is Peace be within thy walls. Addy reads the Emancipation Proclamation aloud at the front at the end of Changes for Addy. Addy's parents are formally married there in Addy's Wedding Quilt.

The church is based on Philadelphia's Mother Bethel A.M.E. Church which was founded in 1794 and is the oldest African Methodist Episcopal congregation in the US and a National Historic Landmark.