We got up with plans to get an early start and head into Boston for the day. First, we had to make some adjustments to our future plans. The remnants of Hurricane Florence will be coming to visit tomorrow. They are predicting an all day rain event–possibly heavy rains and flooding in some areas. Tomorrow would be a wash-out as far as sightseeing goes, so we decided to stay one extra day here to finish up our sightseeing on Wednesday. Of course, that creates the domino effect for the next 2 campgrounds. So, after a few phone calls early this morning, everything was set. The next order of business was to hopefully get my blog problem figured out. Tech support for my blog comes from the state of Washington and with the 3 hour time difference, I didn’t expect to hear anything until noon or later. The waiting was killing me, so it was good that I had our day in Boston to take my mind off of things. We left the campground at 9:30 with an hour drive into downtown Boston. Traffic wasn’t too bad for a Monday morning as we crossed the Merrimac River into Boston.
Then we crossed this beautiful bridge and entered a tunnel that brought us into town.
We had done our research, so we knew where to park and where to begin the Freedom Trail walking tour.
The Freedom Trail which begins at Boston Common and ends at Bunker Hill is easy to follow. Red bricks or granite stones embedded into the sidewalk form a line that guides you from place to place.
Bob wasn’t looking forward to driving in the city, but we found our parking structure easily and walked a few blocks to the Visitor’s Center on Boston Common, a 44-acre park.
The tour also began there and with our AAA Tour Book, we had an informative description of every point of interest we would be visiting on our self-guided walking tour. (The grassy area in town became common land when the town was first settled and “the common” was occupied by grazing cattle, hence the name “Boston Common”.)
Walking up the hill, we located the Golden Dome of the Massachusetts State House.
At the edge of the park was a bronze sculpture known as the Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Regiment Memorial.
You guessed it! Bob needed to have his picture taken there. He even explained to a family standing nearby that his name was actually Robert Shaw, for real, and showed them his ID to prove it. We crossed the street and climbed the stairs into the State House and went inside.
After clearing security, we found the rotunda and looked around.
The original dome was adorned with copper from Paul Revere’s company in 1802 and was guilded following the Civil War. The building sits on Beacon Hill–the tallest of Boston’s 3 hills–on land once owned by John Hancock.
The next stop was the Granary Burying Ground that was once part of Boston Common.
This is where the first body was interred in 1660.
This is the final resting place for Revolutionary War heroes, 9 Massachusetts governors, soldiers, and residents of early Boston. Ben Franklin’s parents lie here.
People have placed copper pennies around the plaque.
Samuel Adams and John Hancock, signers of the Constitution, are buried here.
Paul Revere and 5 victims of the Boston Massacre also lie here.
Extraordinary engravings and curious epitaphs can be seen on some headstones.
Carving of skeletons and winged skulls were common.
There were 3 kinds of grave markers–headstones, table tombs, and vaults. Many headstones have been moved so many times that they don’t correspond to the actual graves.
Our next stop was the King’s Chapel. King James ordered that an Anglican Church be built, but the Puritans wouldn’t sell the land for its construction, so the governor stole land from the Chapel Burying Ground next door and built the church in the late 1600’s. We did not go in, but this is a picture of the inside of the chapel.
Next on the Freedom Trail, was the first public school in the country–Boston Latin School in 1635. Ben Franklin and Sam Adams were educated there.
Near to the school is the Old City Hall with a statue of Ben Franklin in the courtyard. It was the first commemorative statue erected in the city.
Across the street is the Old South Meeting House.
This was the largest building in town and used as a town meeting site, primarily for political gatherings, such as to plan the Boston Tea Party and as a gathering site following the Boston Massacre.
Next on the Trail was the Old State House. It was the center of Colonial Government.
On the north side of the Old State House is a balcony where the Declaration of Independence was first read publicly in Boston. The guilded lion and unicorn, symbols of Great Britain, stand atop the building.
A statue of Samuel Adams, the organizer of the revolution, stands in front of Faneuil Hall.
It was here that the principal of “no taxation without representation” originated. Inside Faneuil Hall, we found a marketplace consisting of shops, food stalls, restaurants, and pushcart vendors. Street entertainers and musicians came out to perform here.
This area, known as Blackstone Block, consists of narrow streets, like alleys, full of taverns.
The Green Dragon Tavern is a pub where secret meetings took place during the Revolution.
Our friends, Patti and Mike from NH, recommended the Union Oyster House for chowder and cornbread.
Built in 1713, it is one of the oldest restaurants in the country. It was rumored that Daniel Webster was a regular patron.
Unfortunately, we were there at noon and the place was crowded, especially sitting at the oyster bar.
We checked it out, but walked down the street to a less crowded pub–Paddy O’s.
They had some great specials advertised on the sandwich boards out front.
Bob had some oysters and I had the chowder with $3 beers to wash it down.
The place was very cool inside. On the menu, they had Guiness floats–Guiness beer with ice cream and a touch of chocolate. I think it’s something that I will have to try.
Our feet were telling us it was time to end our walking tour and head back to the truck. It was a long walk back and we had to ask a friendly policeman for directions. On our walk back to the Commons, we got a phone call from Tech Support regarding my blog. Mike, my favorite techie, asked me for some information and was able to fix and restore my blog remotely in about 5 minutes. He is a whiz and was a great help! I love that my website developer is readily available and able to help with a phone call. I was so happy and ready to get back to work on my blog. I was 2 days behind and wanted to get caught up. We arrived at the parking structure and paid our parking fee. It was worth the three hours we spent in Boston.
From there, we made the short drive to Charlestown and Bunker Hill. We drove across the Charlestown Bridge and Boston Harbor to the Bunker Hill Monument. The boats on the river are Duck tour boats like the one that sunk on Lake of the Ozarks.
There was no parking available, so Bob dropped me off to check it out. He would drive around the block and come back to pick me up.
The 221-foot tall obelisk was dedicated in 1843 and erected on the battleground as a permanent monument. The Battle of Bunker Hill actually took place on a neighboring hill. It is the battle where the legendary order not to shoot until they saw “the whites of their eyes” was given. The battle gave great confidence to the Patriots that they could face the British in combat.
The monument is surrounded by neighborhoods of Victorian-style homes and decorative town houses.
From there, we found our way to the Interstate entrance. It took us 25 minutes to get on the ramp to the Interstate because of the heavy traffic gridlock around a roundabout. (They call them a rotary.) Once we got onto I-93, traffic was heavy. We finally made it home at 4:00 after starting out from Boston at 2:00. Our feet were sore, but we had a great time exploring Boston. It turned out to be a perfect day for walking the Freedom Trail. The skies were sunny and the temp was in the low 80’s. When we got back to the campground, Auggie was ready for a walk. Then we prepped the campsite for a day of rain tomorrow. I sat outside with Auggie before dinner working on my blog for today. We had a later dinner and watched some TV. We look forward to some “down time” on our rainy day tomorrow.