13.08.2011 - 13.08.2011
Boston occupies a pivotal place in American history as the site of the Boston Tea Party, where on 16 December 1773 a group of citizens boarded three ships moored in Boston Harbour and threw the cargo of tea into the water, part of a resistance to the Tea Act passed in Britain that year. The closest we came to the site of the incident was the plaque below marking the location of Griffin's Wharf. It's a large, modern office block now.
A short walk away is the Paul Revere House, the oldest surviving structure in Boston. It was from here that Revere left for his 'midnight ride' on 18 April 1775 to Lexington to warn of British troop movements.
On the same date, under Revere's instruction, two lanterns were hung in the steeple of Old North Church to signal that British troops were advancing to Lexington and Concord by sea. ('One if by land, two if by sea.') The Battles of Lexington and Concord were fought the next day, the first engagements of the revolutionary war.
By the time the Massachusetts State House was completed in 1798 the war was won.
Boston is a handsome city and the posh Beacon Hill district contains Acorn Street, often cited as the 'most photographed street in America'.
The city is also famous as the location of the sitcom Cheers. The exterior shots were filmed at the Bull and Finch Pub.
The snug interior of the pub looks nothing like the set - the show was filmed before a studio audience in Hollywood. But, in a case of life imitating art, on the ground floor there is now a 'set bar' modelled on the show.
We planned to stop for a drink but it was incredibly busy. So instead we headed to the Boston Beer Works, where beer is both brewed and served on the premises.