Special markers implanted in the sidewalk denote the stops along the Freedom Trail
|Designation||National Millennium Trail|
|Trailheads||Boston Common to USS Constitution in Charlestown|
|Sights||16 historical sites|
The Freedom Trail is a 2.5-mile-long (4.0 km) path through downtown Boston, Massachusetts that passes by 16 locations significant to the history of the United States. Marked largely with brick, it winds between Boston Common to the USS Constitution in Charlestown. Stops along the trail include simple explanatory ground markers, graveyards, notable churches and buildings, and a historic naval frigate. While most of the sites are free or suggest donations, the Old South Meeting House, the Old State House, and the Paul Revere House charge admission. The Freedom Trail is overseen by the City of Boston's Freedom Trail Commission and is supported in part by grants from various nonprofits and foundations, private philanthropy, and Boston National Historical Park.
The Freedom Trail was originally conceived by local journalist William Schofield, who in 1951 suggested building a pedestrian trail to link together important local landmarks. Boston mayor John Hynes decided to put Schofield's idea into action. By 1953, 40,000 people were walking the trail annually.
The National Park Service operates a visitor's center on the first floor of Faneuil Hall, where they offer tours, give out free maps of the Freedom Trail and other historic sites, and sell books about Boston and United States history.
Official trail sites
- Boston Common
- Massachusetts State House
- Park Street Church
- Granary Burying Ground
- King's Chapel
- King's Chapel Burying Ground
- Benjamin Franklin statue and former site of Boston Latin School
- Old Corner Bookstore
- Old South Meeting House
- Old State House
- Site of the Boston Massacre
- Faneuil Hall
- Paul Revere House
- Old North Church
- Copp's Hill Burying Ground
- USS Constitution
- Bunker Hill Monument
The Black Heritage Trail crosses the Freedom Trail between the Massachusetts State House and Park Street Church.
- "Freedom Trail". City of Boston. Retrieved November 1, 2013.
- O'Connor, Thomas H. (1993), Building a new Boston: politics and urban renewal, 1950–1970, Boston: Northeastern University Press, ISBN 1-55553-161-X, 155553161X
- Alfred F. Young (21 Mar 2004), "The Trouble with the Freedom Trail", Boston Globe
- "The Freedom Trail". Boston Minuteman Council. Retrieved 2010-07-04.
- Bahne, Charles (2005). The Complete Guide to Boston's Freedom Trail (Guidebook) (3rd ed.). Cambridge, Mass: Newtowne Pub. ISBN 978-0961570521.
- Booth, Robert (2008). Pietrzyk, Cindi, ed. Boston's Freedom Trail, Trace the Path of American History (Guidebook). Jack Frost (8th ed.). Guilford, CT: Globe Pequot. ISBN 9780762747696. Retrieved May 21, 2012.
- MacQuarrie, Brian (January 30, 1996). "Freedom Trail is fading: Consultant says route past city's historic sites needs overhaul to draw tourists". Boston Globe.
- Mead, Philip (2007). "Walking the Freedom Trail: Some lessons from Iraq". Common Place. 8 (1).
- Schofield, William G. (1988). Freedom by the Bay: The Boston Freedom Trail. Wellesley, MA: Branden Books. ISBN 9780828319225. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
- Young, Alfred F. (2003). "Revolution in Boston? Eight Propositions for Public History on the Freedom Trail". The Public Historian. 25 (2).
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Freedom Trail.|
- Freedom Trail Foundation
- The Black Heritage Trail
- Boston National Historic Park
- The Boston Harbor Walk
- The Freedom Trail – BSA Pamphlet
- 1798 Map of Boston
- Clough's 1798 Atlas of Boston (circa 1900)
- 1640 Map of Boston
- History of the Freedom Trail
- PDF Map of the Freedom Trail
- Mapping Boston History