Boston, Massachusetts: Population = 667,137 (Greater Boston metro area = 4.7 million) , elevation = 121 feet, average January low temp = 18.9, Average July high temp = 84, average sunny days = 200, annual snowfall = 48.1”, annual rainfall = 45.3”, air quality index = 26.4, water quality index = 1, comfort index = 51
Boston is very old for an American city. It was established in 1630 by Puritan settlers. The names and stories are familiar to anyone who has studied American history. What was surprising to me was how embedded the old is in the new. Paul Revere’s house is surrounded by apartments. The Old North Church, famous for Revere’s “one if by land, two if by sea”, is tucked tightly into a snug Italian neighborhood. The King’s Chapel, the first Anglican chapel in colonial New England, was established in 1686 and today is surrounded by office buildings.
Before the American Revolution, there was much debate over government and policy. The leaders, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Paul Revere, and many others, would gather in Faneuil Hall to argue for independence from England. It was here that they plotted the Boston Tea Party.
Not far away, we find the Old State House. This was the seat of the colonial government until 1776, when the Declaration of Independence was read from the balcony to the cheering Bostonians. It was here that the Boston Massacre took place.
Just across the harbor, the USS Constitution lies in dry dock for some maintenance. The Constitution was more commonly known as “Old Ironsides” after she was launched in 1797. She is the oldest commissioned warship afloat in the world today. George Washington named it after the Constitution of the USA. This ship has a long and storied history including fighting pirates and the English warships in the War of 1812.
Up the hill from the Constitution (on Breed’s Hill), the Bunker Hill Monument towers over the landscape. This obelisk commemorates one of the first battles between the British and the Revolutionary Americans. Here is where the order “don’t fire until you see the whites of their eyes” was reportedly given.
Besides a historic tour of Boston, we also got to see a lot of the modern city. Next up: Boston part 2.