Boston Common is the oldest park in the United States, dating from 1634 and is part of the Emerald Necklace of parks and parkways. The Central Burying Ground contains the burial sites of composer William Billings, artist Gilbert Stuart, poet Charles Sprague and his father, Boston Tea Party participant Samuel Sprague.
In the 19th century, Boston’s wealthy elite were called the “Brahmin Caste of New England”. They were descendants of the early English colonists, those who came to America on ships such as the Arbella and Mayflower. Primarily located on Beacon Hill, Brahmin families sought to be exclusive. They married into other New England families, thus cementing their social standing and wealth. They maintained high standards of conduct and displayed customary English restraint in attire and mannerisms, actively cultivating community leaderships, philanthropic works and the arts.
Commonly called the Massachusetts State House, The Capitol was built in 1798 and was designed by noted architect Charles Bulfinch. The building houses the State Legislature and the offices of the governor. It has been designated as a National Historic Landmark for its fine Federal architecture.
The Old Town Hall
Active from 1865 to 1969, Boston’s Old Town Hall was one of the first buildings in the United States to be designed in the French Second Empire architectural style. In 1970, it was designated a US National Historic Landmark.
A marketplace and meeting hall since 1743, greats like Samuel Adams have delivered speeches here encouraging independence from Great Britain. Also called “The Cradle of Liberty”, it is now a part of Boston National Historical Park.
One of the largest market complexes in the US in early 19th century, today the place is famed for its street performers, grocery stalls, fast food and restaurants. A favorite for Bostonians during lunch hour.
Old South Church
Home to one of America’s older religious communities, the United Church of Christ congregation is one of the finest examples of High Victorian Gothic churches in New England.
Founded in 1733, the former site was destroyed in the Great Boston Fire of 1872. The current church was erected in 1877 and gave birth to the Richardsonian Romanesque style of architecture. The building’s main features include a clay roof, polychromy, stonework, baroque arches, and a massive tower.
Boston Public Library
Proclaimed a “palace for the people”, the McKim building has been designated a National Historic Landmark, and is also listed in the National Register of Historic Places. It was the first large scale urban library in the United States, and the first to exhibit Beaux Arts architecture.
Named after painter, John Singleton Copley whose paintings became famous for their depictions of the New England middle class.
New England Holocaust Memorial
Visitors can walk under six glass towers, the outside walls of which are engraved with groups of numbers representing the six million Jews that were killed in the Holocaust. The inner walls have quotes from survivors. Stanley Saitowitz designed this memorial for the city of Boston.
Founded in 1971, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is located in Cambridge. 1800 pieces constitute the holography collection, one of the largest in the world.
Museum of Fine Arts
The fourth largest museum in the United States, the Museum of Fine Arts houses more than 500,000 works of arts in Boston. Collections include ancient Egyptian jewelry, Monet, musical instruments, Nubian art and Nigerian Yoruba sculptures.
A major upscale neighborhood in Boston, Newbury Street is complete with retail stores, boutiques, cafes and restaurants, all housed in historic 19th century brownstones.