Tag Archives: History

Uncommonly Lovely Boston Common

Boston wears the spring season well. Maybe it’s that the preceding winter season sometimes seems just a little longer than absolutely necessary, but Boston in bloom is especially lovely and Boston Common, located southwest of the Statehouse, frames springtime especially well. As the oldest public park in the United States, the almost 50 acre tract has a colorful history that has included a British military encampment, public hangings, public rallies, and celebrations. At one time it was even used as a cow and sheep pasture.

Today, the grounds are dotted with artwork, monuments and shade trees that invite lingering and lunchtime picnics for area office workers.  Adjacent to the Public Garden, a spectacular splash of nature within the heart of the city, the walkways of Boston Common are popular with joggers, walkers, roller-bladers and cyclists. The Frog Pond operates as an ice rink from November through mid-March. In the sweltering summer months it’s more of an urban beach with seating at the edges of the wading pool and a spraying fountain for a quick cool down. It wasn’t quite “beach” weather when my cousin and I walked through last month, but with blue skies and good conversation that didn’t really matter at all.

Boston Things To Do

15 Beacon and W Boston provide alternate urban hotel experiences within easy walking distance of the park and the Massachusetts Statehouse on Beacon Street.


Decorative Defects on Beacon Hill

Wandering the cobblestone streets of Beacon Hill was as artistically satisfying as an evening in a favorite art gallery. So many details foreign to my suburban existence in Midwestern Ohio. So much history, both recorded and unspoken. The urge to see it all pulled against my desire to linger and take it all in.

Just steps away from the Massachusetts State House, the area hums with an energy all its own. Historical echoes or the glamor of present day politics? No matter. Beacon Hill is a fascinating ramble.

Defective glass panes are a mark of distinction on the faces of the staid brick mansions and bowfront row houses. Many of these unconventional splashes of lavender date back to a defective glass shipment from England in the early 1800s. An increased amount of magnesium in the panes caused them to turn purple with sun exposure and clear windows began sporting individual stained glass panes.

Reportedly, the company that produced the changeable glass was unable to duplicate its mistake for future profit, lending the few “defectives” that remain an unexpected charm and value.

Boston Things To Do


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