Around the City Feature: Boston Common
Posted on: August 10, 2016

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Hampshire House is proud to be located in a city as historic and vibrant as Boston, and we encourage our guests to get to know the city and take full advantage of all that it has to offer. One particular area of interest is the nearby Boston Common, which many know as America’s oldest park.

Boston Common dates back more than 350 years, all the way to Colonial times during our country’s shaky beginnings. During the 1700s it was a place for the Colonial militia to group themselves for the Revolution, and it was also the place where the British army created an encampment for more than eight years. George Washington and John Adams celebrated America’s independence at Boston Common once the war was through, and in the 1860s, anti-slavery meetings were held on the park’s historic grounds.

boston common photo
Photo by Vignesh Ananth

The park didn’t really become a park until 1913, when Frederick Law Olmsted’s sons created paved walkways, spread lush soil and planted green trees. Later in the 20th century, Martin Luther King, Jr. gave speeches in Boston Commons, and many civil rights rallies were held on the grounds. Pope John Paul II even celebrated a mass in the park in 1979.

Today, Boston Common is one of the most popular and scenic parks in all of Boston. Visitors spend their time strolling through the well-maintained walking paths, admiring the fountains and brushing up on the park’s history through its beautiful statues. For more athletic visitors, there are also a number of ball fields, playgrounds and even the beloved Frog Pond, which freezes over in the winter for skating.

If you’re a bit of a history buff, you’ll be happy to know that the Friends of the Public Garden have created a brochure detailing Boston Commons’ storied history. On your next free afternoon or before a visit to Hampshire House, be sure to visit this historic park and immerse yourself in a truly fascinating piece of Boston’s past.

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