Most walking tours last 90 minutes, but they can be longer, or just one hour. It is up to you! Tickets are $25 per person for most walks. Custom tours are available. Contact me to arrange a tour.
Learn about the Boston Brahmins or the Big Dig, the West End or Charlestown, the Abolitionists or the Puritans!
The most popular walks:
Colonial and Revolutionary North End
A walk through Boston's oldest neighborhood with the man who wrote the book about it. The founding of Boston's first white and black communities is discussed. The famous Old North Church and Paul Revere House, and their roles in the War of Independence, are also highlighted.
ABOVE: Cyrus Dallin's statue of Paul Revere, placed in the North End in 1940.
The North End's "New" Immigrants
Immigrants from Europe arrived in unprecedented numbers in the 1800s, forever transforming Boston. People from Ireland, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and Italy, among others, settled in the North End. At that time there was no indoor plumbing, few government assistance programs, and hardly any friendly faces for these Catholic and Jewish newcomers. Come explore some of the sites and stories of the Irish era of John F. Fitzgerald; the Jews who lived near the local “Gates of Jerusalem;” and the Italians who still hold sway in the North End.
ABOVE: St. Leonard's Catholic Church and grounds, home to the North End's first Italian congregation, founded in 1873.
The Fall and Rise of Beacon Hill
For over 100 years Beacon Hill was largely uninhabited and considered to be the undesirable backside of Boston. By the 1780s, a small black community had settled on part of the hill. Beginning in 1795, however, a wildly successful real estate venture created the prestigious and beautiful neighborhood we know today. As part of this transformation, the once three-peaked hill was greatly reduced in height. The architect Charles Bulfinch, the politician Harrison Gray Otis, and many of the "Brahmins" of Boston will be introduced on this tour.
ABOVE: The second Harrison Gray Otis House (1801) on Beacon Hill.
BELOW: The Charlestown Navy Yard with the USS Constitution at the left. The Bunker Hill Monument rises at the right.
The Freedom Trail
Old South and Old North, Faneuil Hall and the Paul Revere House, America's oldest commissioned naval vessel (the Constitution) and colonial Boston's three oldest burying grounds ... these and other sites from the 1700s are part of the famous Freedom Trail. Established in 1958, this trail along an actual red line on the ground is why millions of people travel to Boston.
The Boston Stone (below) is located on the Freedom Trail in old Creek Square, pictured above.
The Black Heritage Trail
Truly a hidden gem in Boston, this walk focuses on over a dozen pre-Civil War houses, churches, and schools on the north slope of Beacon Hill (long considered part of the West End). Established in 1963, the Black Heritage Trail highlights the African Americans who were at the center of the fight to end slavery in America, though it had been abolished in Massachusetts in 1783. The magnificent bronze monument to Colonel Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts Regiment, the first African-American regiment from the North, is an integral part of this tour.
ABOVE: The Colonel George Middleton House on the Black Heritage Trail. Built c.1787, it is the oldest dwelling on Beacon Hill, and the oldest African-American home in Boston.
BELOW: Two views of the Shaw/54th Massachusetts Monument, dedicated in 1897 on Boston Common.
"Freedom Trail" is a registered trademark of the Freedom Trail Foundation.
"Black Heritage Trail" is a registered trademark of the Museum of African American History.
© 2009-2012 by Alex R. Goldfeld
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