Kingsessing is a neighborhood in the Southwest section of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, located adjacent to the neighborhoods of Cedar Park, Southwest Schuykill, and Mount Moriah, as well as Yeadon in Delaware County. It is roughly bounded by Cobbs Creek and 60th Street to the southwest, Woodland Avenue to the southeast, 53rd Street to the northeast, and Baltimore Avenue to the northwest.
The name Kingsessing or Chinsessing comes from the Delaware Indian word for "a place where there is a meadow". The origins of Kingsessing are found in the village of the same name that roughly occupied the same site as the current neighborhood. Kingsessing became the name of the township in which the original Indian and Swedish village stood.
Kingsessing Township was a township in the extreme southwestern portion of the county, roughly encompassed all of what is now known today as Southwest Philadelphia, bounded on the north by Blockley Township; on the east by Mill Creek and Schuylkill River; on the south by Delaware River and Bow Creek; and on the west by Darby Creek and Cobbs Creek; shaped irregularly. It embraces the site of the old village of Kingsessing. The township contained no other settlements of any size except Maylandville. It was traversed principally by the Darby Road and the road to Lazaretto. Its greatest length, ; greatest breadth, ; area, . This was the oldest settled portion of the county of Philadelphia.
The Kingsessing settlement was started by Swedes who settled the colony of New Sweden. Most of the settlers were Finns. Dating to 1646, it was the first village settled by Europeans within the territory of Philadelphia. Fort Nya Vasa at Kingsessing, was located on the eastern-side of Cobbs Creek near Cobbs Creek Parkway and Greenway Avenue.
For the 18th and most of the 19th centuries Kingessing was a rural township with farms, orchards and market gardens. A major botanic and horticultural garden, Bartram's Garden was located in Kingessing Township, and was frequently called the "Kingsess Garden." By the middle of the 19th century Kingessing was a major center for the nursery and florist gardens in Philadelphia County.