Irvin J. Borowsky
The National Liberty Museum is the culmination of the life’s work of Irvin Borowsky, a proud lifelong Philadelphian, distinguished publisher, art collector, and philanthropist.
“We who are fortunate enough to live in the land of liberty must protect it, preserve it, and guard it for future generations.”
—Founder Irvin Borowsky, at the National Liberty Museum’s opening ceremony on January 12, 2000
Irv, as he was known to those close to him, was the youngest son of two Polish immigrants who arrived in America in 1904. Like millions of others, they came with only what they could carry, seeking safety and new opportunities. Their experience and background gave their son a profound appreciation for what America offered.
Irv became an entrepreneur at a very young age, going on to found North American Publishing Company (NAPCO), the parent company of Publishing Executive and Book Business magazines, as well as a magazine that would eventually evolve into TV Guide. When he retired, he wanted to give back to our nation by reminding people that liberty is the defining force that makes everything else that we do possible. In founding the NLM, he was seeking not just to present a collection of art and artifacts, but rather to illustrate that liberty is a fragile concept whose survival requires us to understand, respect, and actively engage with one another.
Irvin Borowsky died peacefully on November 25, 2014—two days after his 90th birthday.
We at the NLM proudly carry on Irv’s legacy and commitment to keeping liberty alive and thriving for all.