Boston National Historical Park

Essay by sunshine4432High School, 11th gradeA+, February 2005

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Have you ever wondered why Boston National Historical Park is one of the most popular destinations for visitors to Boston? There are many historical attractions within the park.

Most of the Boston National Historical Park sites are connected by the Freedom Trail. Recognized as a National Recreation Trail, the 3-mile trail is a walking tour of 16 sites and structures of historic importance in downtown Boston and Charlestown.

Faneuil Hall

In early 18th-century Boston a number of merchant families amassed great wealth through shipping and trade. Codfish, caught off the coast, were dried, salted, and traded in the West Indies for molasses and rum. These products were, in turn, exchanged in Europe for manufactured goods, or, along the west coast of Africa, for slaves. One of the wealthiest Boston merchants of this era was Peter Faneuil. Faneuil proposed to mark his success by building a central food market in his hometown.

The building as finally constructed in 1742 included not only an open market but also a meeting space suitable for town gatherings. The hall, named for Faneuil, was built on land gained by the filling of the small cove near the ancient and dilapidated town dock. It was expanded in 1806 by Charles Bulfinch.

Old Corner Book Store

Originally built in 1712 as an apothecary shop, office, and the home of Thomas Crease, this building was the center of literary Boston in the 19th century. Such noted authors as Longfellow, Emerson, Hawthorne, and Oliver Wendell Holmes gathered in the bookstore here. Many famous books were published here, including The Scarlet Letter, and Walden. Today, The Boston Globe Store which was founded by The Boston Globe newspaper occupies the building and specializes in New England and travel books and maps.

Old State House

The Old State House, Boston's oldest...