Visit Boston Massachusetts
Visit Boston Massachusetts
John Hancock Observatory Building

Freedom Trail

99 Chauncy Street

Boston, Massachusetts 02111-1755

(617) 357-8300

Written by Julie Greiner

Web Site: The Freedom Trail

The Freedom Trail sites include the scenes of critical events in Boston's and the nation's struggle for freedom. Some visitors choose to trek the entire two and one half mile route or select an individual site to visit.

Boston Common and State House

The Freedom Trail begins at the Boston Common where cattle once grazed and British soldiers encamped. Built in 1634 by Puritan settlers, it is the oldest public park in the Untied States This also marks the start of the Black Heritage Trail, a feature of the Museum of Afro American History and Boston African American national Historic Site. Next you travel to the Park Street Church, where the hymn "America" was first sung and William Lloyd Garrison gave his first anti-slavery speech in 1829.

King's Chapel to the Site of Boston Tea Party

The King's
Chapel was built in 1749 for the first Anglican congregation in Boston. In 1787 the remaining congregation organized the first Unitarian congregation in America. The burying ground next to the chapel is the grave site of John Winthrop, the colony's first governor and also the gravestone that inspired Nathaniel Hawthorne to write "The Scarlet Letter". The statue of Benjamin Franklin overlooks the site of the Latin school, the oldest public school in America which was established in 1635. The Old South Meeting House which was built in 1729
Boston Commons & Statehouse
and was the meeting place for protesting the Boston Massacre and the tax on tea. The Old Corner Bookstore is typical of the kinds of dwellings and shops that lined the streets of Boston in colonial days. This was first built as an apothecary for druggist Thomas Crease in 1718. And it later became a literary center in the mid-19th century as noted names of history had their manuscripts published - such as Wadsworth Longfellow, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Louisa May Alcott and others.

The Freedom Trail Goes on

The Old State House was built in 1713 and a cobblestone circle beneath
its balcony marks the site of the 1770 Boston Massacre. Today it is a museum of Boston history. The old market building Faneuil Hall, built in 1742 sits at the site of the old town dock. Paul Revere's Home, in Boston's oldest residential neighborhood contains some of the city's oldest buildings. The Old North Church which was built in 1723 is Boston's oldest church and is still an active Episcopal Church. Copp's Hill Burying Ground is where the Blacks and Mulattos who worked in the shipyards of the
King's Chapel
North End are interred within these grounds dating to 1660. On to the Bunker Hill Monument, which has 294 steps for the visitors to climb. It was built in 1843 and this 221-foot obelisk commemorates the Revolution's first major battle against the mighty British.

Revolution to World War II

Charlestown Navy Yard was built through the development and support of a navy. From 1800 to 1974, Charlestown Navy Yard built and repaired naval vessels. Today the yard is home to the USS Constitution, the oldest commissioned warship afloat in the world. More information on visiting these sites can be obtained by calling the National Historic Park at (617) 242-5642 or checking the website at www.nps.gov/bost.
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Last Updated: September 23, 2015