Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Boston, MA

I was in Boston once before, but that was over 20 years ago. After a business meeting I do remember going into downtown Boston and seeing some of the historic sites from the American Revolution. I was excited to see them all over again and spend more time in the town which was the heart of the American Revolution. Between Max and myself, there were over 600 pictures taken over 4 days. I chose about 30, hoping to give everyone an idea of all the things we did and all things we saw.

The day I arrived we headed to Lexington Square. As we arrived we saw all kinds of flashy
lights and decorated cars sitting around a monument to the minutemen.

How patriotic and moving to see this jeep, painted like our flag, standing in front of the symbol of the men who fought to establish a free and independent country. The jeep was part of a 21 car caravan, which started in California and will end up in NYC for the 9/11/ celebration and memorial. The other 20 cars were police cruisers, each one representing a different site, etc. For example, one cruiser had the names of all those killed in the Twin Tower disaster, another car the names of those lost on the plane which crashed and on and on, even to listing the names of those who have died in combat since 9/11. It was very emotional for me, yet I was so glad I got to see this display.

Buckman Tavern, built in 1709, was the gathering place of the Lexington Militia on April 19, 1775. Early that morning 700 British Regulars came across about 77 local militia. As the militia were dispersing, someone fired, no one knows who, but the British opened fire and left 8 colonists dead on the square across from Buckman's Tavern.

The British continued on to Concord and the Old North Bridge. Here is where a larger gathering of local militiamen came face to face with the British and for the first time the order was given for the militia to fire upon the British and the American Revolution began.

Standing in front of a statue to honor the Minute Men that fought on this site on that day on April 19, 1775.

This is some sort of hive. The insect looks more like a large fly, than a bee or wasp.

The Wayside House. Home of the Alcott family, and the only home Nathaniel Hawthorne ever owned. Louisa May Alcott, author of 'Little Women', lived in this home from 1845 through 1848. Nathaniel Hawthorne, author of 'The Scarlet Letter' and ' The House of Seven Gables', bought this house in 1852 and lived here until 1870. It was Nathaniel Hawthorne who gave the home its current name of Wayside. Harriet Lothrop, pen name Margaret Sidney who wrote the 'Five Little Pepper' series of books, purchased the home in 1883. Hence this home is called the authors house.

Located about a block away, the Orchard House, was Louisa May Alcotts home as an adult.

Within a few blocks of the Wayside and Orchard Home is the home of Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Concord is only about 4 miles from Lexington. We decided to ride our bikes from Lexington out to the Minuteman National Historic Park. But we took the Minuteman Bikeway, taking us to Bedford. Our 4 mile trip to Concord was now 9 miles along a beautiful wooded bike trail.

A casualty of the hurricane, this tree had not yet been moved off the trail.

Finally we arrive at the National Historic Park and find the Redcoats are already there. When it was all over we did a 22 mile bike ride through historic ground, the Battle Road. The road which Paul Revere made his famous ride, warning the colonists "The British are coming".

We took the subway into downtown Boston to see some more historic places. This is the Old South Meeting House. Names such as Samuel Adams, Paul Revere, John Adams and John Hancock all met here as members of the Sons of Liberty.

This is the Old State House and Boston Massacare Site. Back in 1770, 5 colonists were killed when they protested the Sugar Act, which England had enacted to tax the colonists to pay for the war against France. The colonists were upset because they had no representation in parlement.

Fanueil Hall, known as the 'Cradle of Liberty', was given to the people of Boston in 1742 by Peter Fanueil. Still today it has a public meeting hall above the public markets.

Located in Quincy Market is Cheers II, or as the locals say, 'the fake cheers'. This bar is set up like the tv show which made it famous. The original 'Cheers', located in Beacon Hill, was also known as the Bull and Finch Tavern.

Enjoying a grog in the most well known bar in the world.

The Union Oyster House Restaurant, in operation since 1826, is the oldest continuously operated restaurant and oyster bar in the United States.

I think I look pretty good next to this redcoat.

Paul Revere's house. Now located in an area known as little Italy, it was once the home of many influential men from the American Revolution. This area, originally settled by English Puritans, was abandoned by the Puritans when they moved uptown to Beacon Hill. It was then settled by the Irish during the big immigration. When they gained status and moved out the Italian immigrants moved in. Although many of them have moved their homes elsewhere, they have maintained their businesses in this area to this day.

The Old North Church, a Church of England, built in 1723.

Each cubicle was purchased by a family. The purpose of the high walls was to retain heat. There was no heat except for the heated bricks which would be brought to church by the attendees. The price of the seats differed based on the location of the pews. This would have been the church many of our forefathers would have attended.

Down the street, some of the locals were celebrating the Feast of St. Anthony by bringing out food and wine to share with the people on the steets.

This small, grey house is only 10 feet wide. It is called a spite house. The parents of two brothers left their estate to both. But while one brother was overseas, the other brother built a house on both side of the property. Upon returning the other brother found his share of the property gone, so he built this small home in front of his brothers. Hence, the spite house.

What the harbor looked like at the time of the Boston Tea Party in 1773. Today the shoreline is different and where the ship would have been berthed in 1773 is now a public street.

Chinatown is located on the south side of downtown.

Kings Chapel, also known as the Stone Church, was founded in 1686 as the first Anglican Church in New England during the reign of King James II.

Granary Burial Ground, where Paul Revere, Samuel Adams and John Hancock are buried.

Boston Common is the oldest city park in the U.S.

The Massachusetts State House, seat of government for the state of Massachusetts.

The original Cheers in Beacon Hill.

By this time we had walked throughout Boston for over 6 hours. We caught the subway and headed back home. I suspect we walked over 10 miles today.

The U.S.S. Constitution is the oldest, commissioned naval ship still afloat. It is also known as "Old Ironsides". Although there is no iron in its sides, the three layers of wood, made it so strong, that during battle in the War of 1812 cannonballs bounced off its sides.

The monument at Bunker Hill. Three months after the fighting at Concord, one of the more decisive battles in the revolution occurred here on Brede's Hill. Although the colonists lost, it was a significant strategic battle for the revolutionaries.

I climbed all 294 steps to the top of the monument. Here I am looking down on the U.S.S. Constitution.

Looking the other way you can see down on the rooftops and see the gardens and patios.

The Warren Tavern, the first building rebuilt after the fire which destroyed Charlestown during the Battle at Bunker Hill. Paul Revere dedicated this building in 1784. We had lunch there.

Located just outside of downtown Boston is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, otherwise known as MIT.

Just a few miles further north is Harvard, established by the Massachusetts Legislature in 1636. It is celebrating its 375th birthday this year.

While walking along the downtown harbor we stopped and watched these young men perform. They were really good.

This is only a taste of what we did and what we saw. I wish I could show you everything, but that would take way too long. I guess you'll just have to come out to Boston and see for yourself.


Barbara and Ron said...

We saw those cars on the World News one evening. What a wonderful tribute.

I love Boston and the Freedom Trail. But you saw a lot more that I ever did.

Gypsy Boho said...

Very informative and enjoyed the photos.

Diana said...

Wonderful post!