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A generation which ignores history has no past -- and no future.

Robert Heinlein

History of Boston, (Suffolk County) Massachusetts

Featured Picture:

Boston Massachusetts ca 1900

Local History Notes:

The 1854 Gazetteer of the United States by Thomas Baldwin shows:

BOSTON, city and seaport, seat of justice of Suffolk county, Massachusetts, and capital of the state, is situated at the western extremity of Massachusetts bay. By railroad, it is 464 miles N. E. from Washington; 236 miles N. E. from New York; 200 miles E. by S. from Albany; 111 miles S. S. W. from Portland;48 miles N. N. E. from Providence; 76 miles S.S.E. from Concord; and 124 miles N. E. from Hartford. Lat. of the state house, 42° 21´ 22´´ N., lon. 71° 4´9´´ W. The city consists of three parts, Boston Proper, East Boston, and South Boston. Boston Proper or Old Boston, occupies a peninsula embracing about 700 acres; the surface is very uneven, and in three places rises into hills of considerable elevation, the highest being 138 feet above the level of the sea. A narrow isthmus, or "Neck," as it is called, a little more than a mile in length, joins the peninsula to the mainland of Roxbury on the south. This Neck, once overflowed by the tides, was the only passage to the city till the year 1786, and by fortifying it in the early part of the revolution, the British were enabled to cut off all intercourse between Boston and the surrounding country. It has since been raised, and made much wider, so that at present there are four broad avenues leading over it from Roxbury to Boston. Besides these thoroughfares, seven bridges connect Boston Proper with East Boston, South Boston, and the mainland. The first one built was the Charles. River bridge, 1503 feet long, leading to Charlestown. It was opened for travel on the eleventh anniversary of the battle of Bunker's Hill, June 17th, 1786. The Old Cambridge bridge, 2758 feet in length, with a causeway of 3432 feet extending across Charles River to Cambridge road, was completed in 1793. The South Boston bridge, 1550 feet long, leading from the Neck to South Boston, was opened in 1805. Canal Bridge, 2796 feet in length, connecting Boston with Lechmere Point, was finished in 1809. From the centre of this bridge another bridge, 1820 feet in length, extends to Prison Point, in Charlestown. Boston Free bridge, about 500 feet in length, leading to South Boston, and Warren bridge, 1390 feet long, leading to Charlestown, went finished in 1828. In addition to these, the Western avenue, about 1 1/2 miles long, and from 60 to 100 feet wide, extends from the foot of Beacon street to Sewell's Point in Brookline. It is built upon a substantial dam, which is constructed across the bay, enclosing an area of about 600 acres. By means of a cross-dam, this enclosure is divided into two large basins, which, by the aid of tide-gates, are filled at flood tides, thereby creating a vast hydraulic power, at all times available. The partition dam also forms the basis of a branch avenue leading from the main one to Roxbury. The entire work was completed in 1821, at a cost of over $600,000. With the exception of Western avenue, all the others leading from the city, either are or will become, at a given time, the property of the state, and free for public use. The various railroads conducting into the city proper have bridges constructed expressly for their accommodation. Places in the vicinity, not reached by any of these thoroughfares, communicate with Boston by means of steam-ferries.

South Boston, set off from Dorchester in 1804, extends about two miles along the south side of the harbor, between Boston Proper and Fort Independence. It embraces about 600 acres of varied surface, and is handsomely laid out; many of the streets intersect each other at right angles, and form squares. Near the centre, and about two miles from the state house, are the famous "Dorchester Heights," by the fortification of which, in the revolutionary war, the Americans succeeded in expelling the enemy from Boston. These "Heights," nearly 130 feet above the level of the ocean, afford a magnificent view of the city, bay, and surrounding country. One of them contains a capacious reservoir of the Boston Waterworks.

East Boston occupies the western part of what was formerly known as Noddle's Island. Samuel Maverick lived on this island as his homestead in 1630, the same time that John Blackstone owned and improved the peninsula. It embraces about 660 acres of arable land, together with a large body of flats. The surface is quite uneven, portions of it rising into considerable elevations, which afford fine sites for dwellings. The island is situated at nearly the same distance (about 650 yards) from Boston Proper as from Charlestown. It was purchased and laid out into streets in 1832, since which time it has increased rapidly in population. It has already become a place of extensive business, particularly in ship-building and the various branches of manufactures, among the more important of which may be mentioned an immense sugar refinery, and a large steam flouring mill. A wharf, 1000 feet in length, is devoted to the use of the Cunard line of Liverpool steamships. East Boston is the terminus of the Grand Junction railroad. The several parts of the city, together with the town of Chelsea, constitute the county of Suffolk.

The streets of Boston were originally laid out upon no systematic plan, and being accommodated to the unevenness of the surface many of them are crooked and narrow; but these defects have of late been remedied to a considerable extent, so that now the principal thoroughfares are convenient and spacious. Washington and Tremont streets are the fashionable promenades. Although Boston Proper is circumscribed in its limits, it contains one of the finest public parks, the Common, that is known in any city of America. Known to the earliest settlers by the name of "Tower Fields," and occupied afterwards as a town cow-pasture. Boston Common has since been set apart, ornamented, and carefully preserved for the common benefit of the citizens in all coming time. Nearly 50 acres are included within its boundaries, embracing almost every variety of surface, from the level plat to the gentle slope and abrupt ascent. Towering elms, some of which are a hundred years old, enclose the borders, while within, graded walks, beautifully shaded, intersect each other in every direction. Near the centre is a small pond where a fountain of Cochituate sends up its crystal stream whirling and sparkling 60 or 70 feet into the air. The entire grounds are surrounded by a costly iron fence, 1977 yards in length. The northern portion of the common, occupying the southern declivity of Beacon Hill, affords a fine view of Charles river, and the country in that direction. The space towards the west, between the common and Charles river, is occupied by a botanic garden, covering about 25 acres. Other public grounds have been laid out in the newer portions of the city, some of which are beautifully ornamented, and have fountains in the centre.

Boston harbor opens to the sea between two points nearly 4 miles distant from each other-Point Alderton on Nantasket, and Point Shirley in Chelsea. It is sheltered from the ocean by the peninsulas of which these two points are the extremities, and a large number of islands, between which are three entrances. The main passage, which is about 3 miles S. E. from the navy-yard, and so narrow as scarcely to admit two vessels to pass abreast, lies between Castle and Governor's islands, and is defended by Fort Independence and Fort Warren. A passage N. of Governor's island is also protected by Fort Warren. A new fortress, of great size and strength, now nearly completed, on George's island, guards the entrance to the outward or lower harbor. The entire surface included within Point Alderton and Point Shirley is estimated at 75 square miles, about half of which affords good anchorage ground for vessels of the largest class. It is easy of access, free from sandbars, and seldom obstructed with ice. The whole is thickly studded with islands, and is the reservoir of several small streams, among which are the Mystic, Charles, Neponset, and the Manatiquot rivers.

Among the public buildings, the state house from its position is the most conspicuous. It stands on the summit of Beacon Hill, fronting the common. It was erected in 1798 on ground termed in the grant, "Governor Hancock's pasture." The edifice is 173 feet long, and 61 feet wide, with a dome 50 feet in diameter, and 30 feet high, the summit of which is about 120 feet from the ground, and 230 feet above the level of the sea. The view which is afforded from the cupola is unsurpassed by any thing in the United States, if not in the world. Every portion of the city is before the eye of the beholder. The harbor is spread out towards the east, embosoming a multitude of beautiful islands, and whitened with a thousand sails. On the other hand is an illimitable expanse of country adorned with fruitful fields, and everywhere dotted over with elegant villas and flourishing villages; while to the north towers Bunker Hill monument, marking the place where the first great battle of the Revolution was fought. The number of persons who visited the cupola of the state house from April to November, 1849, was 62,430. On the entrance-floor stands a fine statue of Washington, by Chantrey. The representatives' hall is in the centre on the principal floor, the senate chamber in the east, and the governor's and council chamber in the west wing. The old state house is still standing at the upper end of State street, on the site occupied as the seat of government in Massachusetts 140 years. The first building was erected in 1659, (afterwards destroyed by fire;) the second in 1714, (also destroyed by fire;) and the present one in 1748. Faneuil Hall, the "Cradle of Liberty," as it is called, is an object of much interest, as being the place where the orators in the days of Hancock and Adams roused the people to resistance against British oppression. It is situated in Dock square, and is 100 feet long, 80 wide, and 3 stories high. The hall is 76 feet square, and 28 feet high, with deep galleries on three sides. The building was presented to the citizens, in 1742, by Peter Faneuil, Esq. Faneuil Hall Market, immediately east of Faneuil Hall, on Dock street, was at the time of its erection the handsomest market-house in the United States. It is upwards of 500 feet long, 50 feet wide, and two stories high, with a dome. The second story, called Quincy Hall, is so constructed that it can be occupied as several apartments, or thrown into one, as occasion may require. The building was erected in 1826, at a cost of about $150,000. There are several other markets in the city, besides those at East Boston and South Boston. The custom house is near the head of Long Wharf, fronting both on Commerce street and on the harbor. It is built of granite, in the form of a cross, and surmounted by a dome, the top of which is 90 feet from the ground. The foundations rest upon 3000 piles. Its length is 140 feet; width, including the projections of the cross, 95 feet. Each front has a portico of six Doric columns-each a single stone, costing about $5000. The entire cost of the building was upwards of $1,000,000. The Merchants' Exchange is a magnificent fire-proof building, situated on the south side of State street. It has 76 feet front, and extends back 250 feet to Lindall street, covering 13,000 feet of ground. The front is composed of Quincy granite, with four pilasters, each a single stone 45 feet high, and weighing about 55 tons. The roof is of wrought iron, covered with galvanized sheet-iron. The great central hall, 80 feet by 58, is occupied as the Merchants' Exchange and reading room. In the basement is the city post-office. The building was finished in 1842, and cost, exclusive of the ground, $175,000. The city hall, a granite building, consisting of an octagon centre with wings, is located on a plat of ground between Court square and School street. The court house, also of granite, is in Court square between the city hall and Court street. It contains the rooms of the city, county, and United States courts. The city prison, consisting of a centre building in the form of an octagon with four wings extending in opposite directions, is near the foot of Cambridge street. Masonic Temple, in which the Freemasons have a lodge, is on Tremont street, fronting the Common. The new Tremont Temple, erected on the site of the one burnt in 1852, is on Tremont street, opposite the Tremont House. The main hall, which is on the upper floor, is 130 feet by about 78, and 45 feet in height, having galleries on three sides, with eight separate flights of stairs. Directly under this hall are 13 rooms, averaging about 16 feet in width, and from 32 to 38 feet in length. Fronting on Tremont street are four rooms occupied as stores, in the rear of which are two others, each 32 feet by 16, and a vestry, 73 feet by 33. Still farther in the rear is another hall or chapel, 73 feet by 53, with a ceiling 25 feet high. In a recess at one end of the great hall stands one of the largest organs in America. It is 45 feet high, and 36 feet wide, containing 70 stops and 3010 pipes. The Boston Music Hall, completed in 1852, fronts both on Winter street and on Bumstead place. The length of the central hall is 130 feet; width 80 feet; height 65 feet. The Fitchburg railroad depôt, at the corner of Causeway and Haverhill streets, was at the time of its completion the handsomest railroad edifice in the United States, and cost upwards of $70,000.

In Boston there are nearly a hundred churches of the various denominations, viz. Unitarian 22; Congregationalist 14; Baptist 13; Methodist 12; Episcopalian 11; Roman Catholic 11; Universalist 6, besides those of various other denominations. Christ church, (Episcopal,) built in 1723, is the oldest church edifice in Boston. The Old South Meeting-house, erected in 1730, is the next. From the great historical interest connected with this church, it is selected for the annual election sermon, preached before the governor and general court.

The wharves and warehouses of Boston are on a scale of magnitude and grandeur surpassed by no ether city of equal population. The N. and E. sides of Old Boston are lined with wharves and docks, which, taken together, make up an aggregate length of over 5 miles. Many of them are stupendous structures. Long wharf, lined with spacious warehouses, extends into the harbor 1800 feet; T wharf reaches from the centre nearly to the outer extremity of this wharf on the N. side, and is parallel to it. The two are united by means of a short cross-wharf. The next S. of Long wharf is Centre wharf, 1379 feet long, with a uniform range of warehouses four stories high, throughout its whole extent. The custom house is situated between these two, on Commercial street. Still farther S. is India wharf, 980 feet in length, and from 246 to 280 in breadth, having a range of lofty warehouses in the centre. Here are found vessels from China and India. The most important N. of these are Commercial wharf, Lewis's wharf, and the Eastern Railroad wharf. Commercial wharf and Lewis's wharf are each occupied by a range of massive granite warehouses. On the Eastern Railroad wharf, the landing of the East Boston ferry, there are two such ranges, with an avenue between leading to the station house.

Institutions.-Boston contains a great number of literary, scientific, and educational institutions, among which may be mentioned the Boston Athenæum, incorporated in 1807, situated on Beacon street. It has one of the largest and most valuable libraries in the United States, numbering about 50,000 bound volumes, upwards of 20,000 pamphlets, and nearly 500 volumes of engravings, besides a rare collection of coins. About 450 bound volumes, and from 800 to 1000 pamphlets, formerly belonging to the library of Washington, have recently been added to it. The Athenæum likewise contains a fine gallery of sculpture, and also one of paintings. The Massachusetts Historical Society, organized in 1790, possesses a library of 7000 bound volumes, and about 450 volumes of manuscripts, together with an extensive collection of pamphlets, maps, charts, coins, and other relics. The Boston Library Society, rounded in 1792, have a hall in the Tontine buildings, and a library of over 12,000 volumes. The American Academy of Arts and Sciences has a library of 8000 volumes. Excepting the American Philosophical Society at Philadelphia, this is the oldest organization of the kind in the United States, having been rounded in 1780. The Mercantile Library Association, instituted in 1820, has a collection of upwards of 13,600 volumes. The first Mechanics' Apprentices' Library Association ever organized was established in Boston in 1820. The origin of this class of institutions is traced to Dr. Franklin.

Efforts are now being made to establish a Free City Library, towards which the contributions have been very liberal. The Lowell Institute was established by John Lowell, junior, who bequeathed to it a legacy of $250,000. The bequest provides for regular courses of free lectures, to be given upon natural and revealed religion, physics and chemistry in their application to the arts, and numerous other important subjects. There are also many other similar societies, such as the New England Historical and Genealogical Society; the Boston Society of Natural History; the American Oriental Society; the American Statistical Association; the Boston Lyceum; the Handel and Haydn Society; the Musical Educational Society, and the Boston Academy of Music.

Closely identified with the history of Boston is her system of public instruction. Ever cherished with maternal care, her schools have long been ornaments to the city and the pride of New England. As early as 1635, the town records bear evidence to the establishment of a "free school," and from that hour to the present no interest has received more earnest attention than the subject of education. The system comprises four grades, primary, grammar, high, and Latin schools. There are about 190 primary, and 21 grammar schools. The high and Latin schools are exclusively for boys. There were in the primary schools in 1852, about 12,000 pupils; in the grammar schools, 9979; in the high schools, 173; and in the Latin schools, 185; total number in all the schools, approximately, 22,307 pupils; number in the grammar, high, and Latin schools, 10,337; over 15 years of age, 610; average attendance, 9064. Number of masters in the grammar, high, and Latin schools, 31; sub-masters, 11; ushers, 17; female assistants, 144. Salaries of the masters in the high and Latin schools, $2400; sub-masters, $1500; ushers, $800, with an increase of $100 a year till the salary amounts to $1200. Masters in the grammar schools, $1500; sub-masters, $1000; ushers, $800; head assistants, $400; others, $250 the first year, $800 the second; and $350 the third and succeeding years; teachers of music, $100 in each school. All salaries are fixed by the school Committee. The amount of money expended in the Boston schools for the year 1850-51 was $825,126 60. Average cost of tuition of each scholar per annum for the last ten years in the public schools has been $10 59; in the grammar, high, and Latin schools, $15 26; primary, $6 28. Total amount expended for school edifices up to May 1st, 1851, $1,271,273 57. The school committee consists of the mayor of the city, the president of the common council, and 24 other persons chosen for the purpose.

The benevolent institutions of Boater are numerous and well endowed. The Massachusetts General Hospital occupies a plot of four acres of ground in the western part of the city, on the right bank of Charles river. The building is constructed of Chelmsford granite, 274 feet long and 54 wide. Besides a permanent fund of $171,119, it has other sources of income, making the total receipts for the year 1850, $38,517. The number of patients admitted during the same period was 746. The McLean Asylum for the Insane, a branch of the General Hospital, is delightfully situated on an eminence in Summerville, about 2 miles N. W. of Boston. The asylum comprises a group of five elegant buildings, surrounded with 15 acres of ground, beautifully laid out and ornamented. Thirty thousand dollars have been contributed since 1843 for the support of this institution, by a single individual, the Hon. William Appleton of Boston. The McLean Asylum received its name from John McLean, Esq., of Boston, a liberal benefactor of the General Hospital. The Perkins Institution and Massachusetts Asylum for the Blind occupies the fine building formerly known as the Mount Washington house, in South Boston. In addition to other contributions, it receives $9000 annually from the state. The average number of pupils is about 100. There are also located in South Boston, the Boston Lunatic Hospital and the houses of Industry and Reformation. Belonging to these two last named are 60 acres of land, in the cultivation of which the inmates are employed. The new almshouse, an imposing structure in the form of a Latin cross, is on Deer island, and the Quarantine Hospital on Rainsford's island. In the western portion of the city is the Boston Eye and Ear Infirmary, and in the southern part, the New England Female Medical College.

There are issued in Boston about 100 periodical publications, treating of almost every subject, whether of news, art, literature, or science. Of these, more than 12 are dailies. Among the others are comprised several of the most distinguished literary and scientific journals in the United States.

Commerce, Finances, &c.-In commercial importance, Boston is among the first cities of America. Her foreign commerce has always been great, and extends to almost every nation on the globe. Her coast trade is also immense. Along the wharves, in every direction and at all times, may be seen forests of masts, and vessels from all parts of the world. During the year 1852 there were at Boston 2974 foreign, and 6406 coastwise arrivals. Of the coastwise, 1838 were from Philadelphia, 500 from New York, 298 from Bangor, 283 from Baltimore, 277 from Portland, 156 from New Orleans, and smaller numbers from other ports. Of the foreign arrivals, about 75 were from the Cape of Good Hope and beyond. The clearances from Boston for the same year were 6154 vessels, of which 188 ships, 850 barques, 839 brigs, and 1486 schooners were bound for foreign ports, and 78 ships, 14 barques, 5 brigs, and 1 schooner for California. The burthen of the vessels cleared from this port in 1851, amounted to an aggregate of 494,063 tons. The aggregate shipping, June 30th, 1852, was 326,529 tons registered, and 54,584 tons enrolled: total, 381,088 tons. During the year, 46 vessels, (23 of them ships,) with an aggregate of 24,970 tons burthen, were admeasured. Three-fourths of the trade carried on by the United States with Russia, and more than half with East India, comes to this port. Boston has also extensive commercial relations with the countries bordering on the Mediterranean, with South America, and the West India islands.

There were also received the same year at this port, coal, from Great Britain and the Provinces, 9343 tons and 40,764 chaldrons; from domestic ports, 431,270 tons and 14,000 bushels; Iron, bars, 696,042, tons, 3717; railroad, bars, 18,622, tons, 4870; bundles, 185,191; plates, 20,508; blooms, 1382, tons, 53; scrap, 1558; pig, tons, 34,656. Of the bars, 5184 were from Russia; 29,118, Sweden; 543,185, Great Britain, and 118,555 coastwise. Bundles, 9040, from Russia; 140, Sweden; 146,703, Great Britain, and 28,699, coastwise. Hides, 479,288, of which 141,680 were from Buenos Ayres; goatskins, 107,853; leather, 397,628 sides, and 93,447 bundles. Sperm oil, 74,480 barrels; whale do. 83,013 barrels, (the whale oil received in 1851 was 328,483 barrels;) linseed oil, 915,000 gallons; whisky, 250,811 barrels; rye, 18,751 bushels; oats, 849,173 bushels; shorts, 149,474 bushels.

Exported-boots and shoes, 195,120 cases; tobacco, 991 hogsheads, 6036 bales and cases, 19,452 boxes and kegs; ice, 96,482 tons, of which 11,207 tons were for the West Indies. The foreign exports of cotton manufactures for 1852 were much greater than any previous year, and consisted of 62,669 packages. Of these, 24,677 packages, value $1,252,051, were for the East Indies; 23,603 do., value $1,125,205 89, for South America, and 2018 do., value $154,313, for Hayti. The total value of foreign exports in cotton manufactures for 1850 amounted to $1,896,148; 1851, $2,507,703, and 1852, $3,090,106 59. The total value of foreign imports into Boston for 1850 amounted to $29,909,376; 1851, $31,350,553; 1852, $33,987,144.

There were in December, 1852, 32 banks in Boston, with an aggregate capital of $24,660,000; circulation, $8,304,591; specie, $2,784,792; proportion of circulation to one dollar of specie, $2.98; amount of circulation and deposit, $18,597,678. Five other banks have since gone into operation. There were 18 insurance companies, with resources to the amount of $6,783,172, and liabilities amounting to $5,955,060. The assessed value of real and personal property in Boston, in 1851, was about $187,000,000, on which a tax was collected st the rate of $7 on $1000, to the amount of $1,350,000.

The expense of the city police for the year ending May 1st, 1852, was $49,737, and of watch for the same period, $95,645. The entire cost of the Boston water-works up to January 1st, 1852, amounted to $5,185,711. The cost of introducing water into East Boston was $306,980. During the year 1852, a loan of £400,000 was made for the balance of the temporary water debt, at 4 1/2 per cent., payable in 20 years, in London. The total amount of city debt, May 1st, 1853, was $1,830,000.

The want of river advantages is supplied to Boston by railroads, of which seven great lines terminate in this city. There are lines of railway recently completed, opening communication with the St. Lawrence river at Ogdensburg in New York La Prairie in Canada, and another in process of construction through Maine, that is to connect with Montreal. The Great Western line extends through Albany, Buffalo, Detroit, and Chicago, and when completed, will connect with the Mississippi at two points, Galena and Rock Island.

Although the peninsula on which Boston is situated furnishes large quantities of excellent water from springs, still the supply has been found inadequate to the wants of the rapidly increasing population. As early as 1795, a company was incorporated for the purpose of conducting water into the city from Jamaica Pond. In 1845, nearly 15 miles of pipe had been laid, and about 3000 houses furnished with water. But the elevation of the pond proved to be too low to supply the higher portions of the city. During the year 1845, a plan was undertaken to bring water into Boston from Lake Cochituate, or Long Pond, as it was formerly called. Cochituate lake lies about 20 miles west of Boston, partly in three towns, Farmington, Wayland, and Natic. It covers over 650 acres of surface, is 70 feet deep in places, and drains an area of more than 11,000 acres. Its elevation is 124½ feet above spring tide, and is capable of supplying 10,000,000 gallons of water daily. The water is conveyed by means of a brick con duit to a grand reservoir in Brookline, and from thence to the different distributing reservoirs at Boston Proper, East Boston, and South Boston. Over Charles river it is carried in two iron pipes, each 30 inches in diameter, reefing on a granite bridge, having 3 arches, each 30 feet span. The entire length of all the pipe laid from the commencement, up to January 1st, 1852, was a little more than 100 miles.

Among the principal hotels of Boston may be named the following:-The Tremont House, on Tremont street; the Revere House, on Bowdoin square; the American House, on Hanover street; the Winthrop House, on Tremont street, and the Adams House, on Washington street. Most of the above are first class hotels.

History.-The Indian name of the Boston peninsula was Shawmut, signifying Living Fountains. From the peculiar conformation of its surface, the first settlers called it Tremont, or Trimountain. This name, however, was soon dismissed for the present one, which was given it in honor of the Rev. John Cotton, who emigrated from Boston, England. The Rev. John Blackstone was the first white inhabitant of the peninsula. Here he lived alone until the arrival of John Winthrop, the first Governor of Massachusetts, who came to Charlestown with a small party of emigrants, and having remained a short time, removed across the river in 1630. About the year 1635, Mr. Blackstone removed to Rhode Island, having sold his "right and title to the peninsula of Shawmut" for £30. The first church was built in 1632, and the first wharf in 1673. Four years after, John Hayward was appointed postmaster, "to take in and convey letters according to direction." The first newspaper was issued April 17th, 1704, called the Boston News Letter. Benjamin Franklin was born January 17, 1706. In 1768, the difficulties between the colonies and the mother country becoming serious, two regiments of British soldiers were landed in Boston, October 1st, and quartered in the old state house. March 5th, 1770, the citizens were fired on in the streets by the soldiery, and several killed and wounded. March 31st, the port of Boston was closed by act of Parliament. On the 17th of June, 1775, was fought the battle of Bunker Hill. From this time, the British army, to the number of about 10,000 troops, had possession of Boston till March, 1776, when they were compelled by the Americans intrenched on Dorchester Heights to withdraw from the town and harbor. The first blood shed in defence of American liberty was shed in Boston, and throughout the entire war no people contributed more largely towards its support. Boston continued a town until its population had increased to nearly 45,000. The government was administered by a board of selectmen, according to the custom of other towns in New England. At length a majority being favorable to a municipal organization, Boston became an incorporated city, February 23d, 1822. The city is divided into 12 wards, and governed by a mayor, 8 aldermen, and a board of common council, consisting of 48 members, 4 from each ward. The mayor and aldermen constitute one board, and the common council another. Population, in 1800, 24,937; 1810, 33,250; 1820, 43,298; 1830, 61,391; 1840, 93,383; 1850, 136,881.


A Biography of Robert Grant

Robert Grant, author, was born in Boston, Mass., Jan. 24, 1852; eldest son of Patrick and Charlotte Bordman (Rice) Grant. He was a Franklin medal scholar at the Boston Latin school, was graduated from Harvard in 1873, continued his studies there, and received the degree of Ph.D. in 1876 and that of LL.B. in 1879. He settled in Boston to practice law and divided his time between that profession and literature. He became private secretary to Mayor Green of Boston in 1882; was appointed water commissioner by Mayor O'Brien in 1888, and in April, 1889, was reappointed for a term of three yearn. In 1893 he became judge of the Suffolk probate court and court of insolvency by appointment of Governor Russell. While an under-graduate at Harvard he edited the Harvard Advocate and during his law course he edited the Harvard Lampoon. His published writings include; The Little Tin Gods on Wheels (1879); The Confessions of a Frivolous Girl (1880); The Lambs (1882); An Average Man (1883); The King's Men in collaboration with others (1884); The Knave of Hearts (1885); A Romantic Young Lady (1886); Face to Face (1886); Jack Hall, or the School Days of an American Boy (1887); Jack in the Bush (1888); The Reflections of a Married Man (1892); The Opinions of a Philosopher (1893); The Art of Living (1895); The Bachelor's Christmas (1895); and Search-Light Letters (1899), besides poems and prose contributed to various periodicals.

From: Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans, Johnson, Rossiter, editor

A Biography of Frederic May Holland

Frederic May Holland, clergyman and author, was born in Boston. Mass., May 2, 1836; son of the Rev. Frederick West and Harriet (Newcomb) Holland; grandson of John and Sarah (May) Holland, and of Judge Daniel and Hannah (Dawes) Newcomb, and a descendant of William Dawes, who rode out with Paul Revere on the night of April 18, 1775; of Francis Newcomb, and of William Dawes who settled in New England in 1635. He was graduated from Harvard, A.B.. 1859; S.T.B., 1862, and was pastor of Unitarian churches at Rockford, Ill.. 1863-64; Marietta, Ohio, 1864-66, and Baraboo, Wis., 1868-73. He retired from the ministry in 1873 to devote his time to literature. He was married, Sept. 7, 1864 to Anna Maria Bicknell. He is the author of: The Regin of the Stoics (1879); Stories from Robert Browning (1882); The Rise of Intellectual Liberty (1885); Frederick Douglass, the Colored Orator (1891); Liberty in the Nineteenth Century (1899), and contributions to periodicals.

From: Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans, Johnson, Rossiter, editor

A Short Biography of John Torrey Morse

John Torrey Morse, author, was born in Boston, Mass., Jan. 9, 1840; son of John Torrey and Lucy Cabot (Jackson) Morse; grandson of Charles Jackson, associate justice of supreme judicial court of Massachusetts, and a descendant of Samuel Morse, who came over in 1829, and soon afterward settled near Ipswich, Mass., and of Edward Jackson, captain in the Colonial forces, and Jonathan Jackson, first U.S. marshal in Massachusetts district. He was graduated at Harvard, A.B., 1860; studied law under John Lowell, was admitted to the bar, Aug. 4, 1862, and practised with Mr. Lowell until the time of Mr. Lowell's elevation to the bench of the U.S. district court. He then entered into partnership with the Hon. Darwin E. Ware, and retired from active practice in 1880. He was married, June 10, 1865, to Fanny P., daughter of George O. Hovey of Boston, Mass. He represented his district in the Massachusetts legislature in 1875; was an overseer of Harvard, 1879-91, and became a member of the Massachusetts Historical society. He was associate editor with Henry Cabot Lodge of the International Review for four years; contributed to English and American periodicals and edited the "American Statesmen" series (32 vols., 1882-99), to which he contributed the volumes John Quincy Adams (1882), Thomas Jefferson (1889), John Adams (1854), Benjamin Franklin (1889), and Abraham Lincoln (2 vols., 1896). He is also the author of: Treatise on the Law Relating to Banks and Banking (1870); Law of Arbitration and Award (1872); Famous Trials (1874); Life of Alexander Hamilton (2 vols., 1876), and Life and Letters of Oliver Wendell Holmes (2 vols., 1896).

From: Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans, Johnson, Rossiter, editor

Francis Humphreys Storer - A Biography

Francis Humphreys Storer, educator and author, was born in Boston, Mass., March 27, 1832; son of David Humphreys and Abby Jane (Brewer) Storer. He studied law at the Lawrence Scientific school, Harvard, 1850-51; was assistant in chemistry to Josiah P. Cooke, 1851-53; chemist to the U.S. North Pacific exploring expedition in 1853, and after completing his course at Harvard, was graduated, B.S., 1855. He continued his studies at the universities of Germany and Paris, 1855-57; practised as chemist in Boston, Mass., 1857-65, and was professor of general and industrial chemistry and of general and analytical chemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1865-70, visiting Europe in 1867 for further scientific study. He was married, June 21, 1871, to Catharine, daughter of Samuel A. and Mary (Lyman) Eliot, of Boston. In 1870 he was appointed professor of agricultural chemistry at Harvard, and in 1871 dean of Bussey Institution. He was the American editor of the "Repertoire de chimie appliqu?e," 1859-63; received the honorary degree of A.M. from Harvard in 1870; was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a member of various scientific societies in the United States and Europe. He is the author of: Alloys of Copper and Zinc (1860); Manufacture of Parafffine Oils (1860); Dictionary of Solubilities of Chemical Substances (1864); Manual of Qualitative Chemistry (1868) and Manual of Inorganic Chemistry (1869), both with Charles W. Eliot; Cyclop?dia of Quantitative Chemical Analysis (1870-73); Agriculture in Some of Its Relations with Chemistry (1887); Elementary Manual of Chemistry (1894), and Manual of Qualitative Analysis (1899), both with W. B. Lindsay; Bulletin of the Bussey Institution (1871-1902).

From: Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans, Johnson, Rossiter, editor

Biography of Charles Francis Adams
Daniel Carter Beard - A Biography
Thomas Mayo Brewer Biographical Sketch
A Biography of Joseph Stevens Buckminster
Simeon Howard Calhoun Biography
The Biography of Alonzo Howard Clark
The Biography of Joseph Foxcroft Cole
Sidney Coolidge - A Biography
A Short Biography of Thomas Jefferson Coolidge
Charlotte Saunders Cushman - A Biography
A Short Biography of Richard Dana
Biography of John Sullivan Dwight
Thomas Dwight Biographical Sketch
Andrew Eliot Biography
A Biography of John Eliot
A Short Biography of Samuel Eliot
Biographical Sketch of Ralph Waldo Emerson
William Maxwell Evarts Biography
Alexander Hill Everett Biography
George Lingard Fox Biographical Sketch
A Short Biography of Joseph Henry Gilmore
Nathaniel Carl Goodwin Biographical Sketch
Biography of Adoniram Judson Gordon
A Biography of William Gordon
Christopher Gore Biographical Sketch
John Gorham - A Biography
Benjamin Apthorp Gould - A Biography
A Short Biography of Ezra Palmer Gould
David Greenleaf Biographical Sketch
A Short Biography of Ezekiel Price Greenleaf
A Biography of James Greenleaf
The Biography of Henry Greenough
Horatio Greenough Biographical Sketch
A Biography of Francis William Pitt Greenwood
Isaac Geenwood - A Biography
Mathew Harkins - A Biography
Joshua Sidney Henshaw - A Biography
George Hughes Hepworth Biography
Samuel Gridley Howe - A Biography
A Short Biography of John Hull
Biography of John Codman Hurd
A Biography of Joseph Stevens Jones
David Francis Lincoln Biographical Sketch
Heman Lincoln Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of James Lloyd
John Locke - A Biography
Biographical Sketch of James G. Maguire
A Short Biography of Jeremiah Mason
Biography of Jonathan Mason
Frank Mayo Biography
A Short Biography of Frank Thayer Merrill
Biographical Sketch of James Dady Morgan
Biography of Frances Sargent Osgood
A Biography of John Gorham Palfrey
Sara Hammond Palfrey Biographical Sketch
Theophilus Parsons Biography
A Short Biography of Charles Callahan Perkins
Thomas Handasyd Perkins - A Biography
Enoch Wood Perry Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Thomas Prince
The Biography of Charles Allen Thorndike Rice
Samuel Edmund Sewall Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Stephen Sewall
A Short Biography of Aaron Nichols Skinner
Isaiah Thomas - A Biography
Biography of Francis Wayland
John White Webster Biography
Biography of Edwin Percy Whipple
Biographical Sketch of Samuel Willard
A Biography of Seth Williams
A Biography of Charles Francis Adams
Henry Adams Biographical Sketch
Biography of Thomas Coffin Amory
Biography of John Albion Andrew
A Short Biography of Daniel Sidney Appleton
Francis H. Appleton - A Biography
A Biography of John Adams Appleton
Thomas Gold Appleton Biographical Sketch
Biography of William Sumner Appleton
George Washington Armstrong - A Biography
A Short Biography of William Parsons Atkinson
Robert (ok-mu-te) Auchmuty - A Biography
A Short Biography of John Augustus
A Biography of Benjamin Austin
Biography of Jonathan Loring Austin
Lawrence Sprague Babbitt Biographical Sketch
James Francis Babcock Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Ezekiel Bacon
Mathurin Murray Ballou Biography
Biography of Charles Barnard
James Barnes Biography
William Barry Biographical Sketch
A Biography of James Chaplin Beecher
Jeremy Belknap Biographical Sketch
A Short Biography of Alexander Graham Bell
Richard Bellingham Biographical Sketch
Henry Whitney Bellows Biography
The Biography of William Billings
Biography of Amos Binney
Clarence John Blake Biographical Sketch
A Biography of Henry Sherman Boutell
Henry Pickering Bowditch Biography
James Bowdoin Biography
Biography of Nathaniel Bowen
Gamaliel Bradford Biographical Sketch
Caleb Davis Bradlee Biographical Sketch
Osmyn Brewster - A Biography
Biographical Sketch of Buckminster Brown
George Loring Brown - A Biography
Biographical Sketch of Henry Francis Brownson
Biographical Sketch of Charles Bulfinch
Biography of Stephen Greenleaf Bulfinch
Freeman Josiah Bumstead Biographical Sketch
Biography of Horace Bumstead
Henry Burbeck - A Biography
The Biography of Edward Livermore Burlingame
A Biography of William Burnet
Biography of Waldo Irving Burnett
Thomas Oliver Hazard Perry Burnham Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Anthony Burns
Nathaniel Byfield - A Biography
Mather Byles - A Biography
George Cabot Biography
A Biography of Robert Calef
John Callender - A Biography
John Campbell Biography
Biographical Sketch of Nahum Capen
George O. Carpenter Biography
Biographical Sketch of James Wells (\"Champ\") Champney
Walter Channing Biographical Sketch
William Francis Channing - A Biography
Biographical Sketch of William Henry Channing
Charles Chauncy Biographical Sketch
Biography of John Checkley
Ezekiel Cheever Biography
A Short Biography of Ednah Dow Cheney
A Short Biography of Charles Frank Chickering
Biographical Sketch of Thomas Edward Chickering
Biographical Sketch of Rufus Choate
Herbert Codman Clapp - A Biography
William Warland Clapp Biographical Sketch
The Biography of Frank Wigglesworth Clarke
The Biography of John Codman
Biography of Charles Edward Coffin
Jeremiah Colburn Biography
Biography of Patrick Andrew Collins
John Esten Cooke Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Josiah Parsons Cooke
Biographical Sketch of Samuel Cooper
John Singleton Copley Biographical Sketch
Charles Barney Cory Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of James Mason Crafts
Pearl Richards Craigie - A Biography
Biography of Sibylla Bailey Crane
Biographical Sketch of George Glover Crocker
Benjamin Williams Crowninshield - A Biography
A Short Biography of Caspar Crowninshield
A Short Biography of Frederic Crowninshield
Biography of Greely Stevenson Curtis
Biography of Thomas Cushing
Biography of Charles Ammi Cutter
The Biography of George Francis Cutter
A Short Biography of Caroline Wells Healey Dall
The Biography of William Healey Dall
George Mifflin Dallas - A Biography
Biographical Sketch of John Call Dalton
The Biography of William Parsons Dana
A Short Biography of George Franklin Danforth
The Biography of Addington Davenport
Biographical Sketch of Addington Davenport
Charles Henry Davis Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Rufus Dawes
A Short Biography of Thomas Dawes
A Short Biography of Theodore Dehon
The Biography of Joseph Dennie
The Biography of Edward Ignatius Devitt
Biography of Thomas Wilmer Dewing
A Short Biography of Oliver Ditson
Biographical Sketch of George Hobart Doane
The Biography of William Croswell Doane
A Short Biography of Patrick Donahoe
Biography of Samuel Adams Drake
Augustine Joseph Hickey Duganne Biography
A Biography of Charles William Eliot
Samuel Eliot Biography
Samuel Atkins Eliot Biographical Sketch
A Biography of Maud Howe Elliott
A Biography of Robert Brown Elliott
George Edward Ellis Biographical Sketch
A Biography of Theodore Grenville Ellis
Louis Charles Elson Biographical Sketch
Samuel Franklin Emmons Biographical Sketch
The Biography of George William Erving
George Eustis Biographical Sketch
The Biography of William Gilson Farlow
A Biography of Roswell Farnham
Annie Adams Fields Biographical Sketch
The Biography of John Francis Fitzgerald
John Bernard Fitzpatrick Biographical Sketch
A Biography of Thomas Fleet
A Biography of Alice Cunningham Fletcher
A Biography of Eliza Lee Cabot Follen
Biography of Norton Folsom
A Biography of Thomas Bayley Fox
Biography of Benjamin Franklin
A Biography of Arthur Lincoln Frothingham
The Biography of Nathaniel Langdon Frothingham
A Biography of Octavius Brooks Frothingham
A Biography of William Henry Furness
A Short Biography of Charles Wesley Gallagher
The Biography of William Channing Gannett
The Biography of Henry Joseph Gardner
A Biography of John Lane Gardner
A Short Biography of Thomas J. Geary
Joshua Gee - A Biography
A Biography of Karl Gerhardt
Biography of John Gibbs Gllbert
Biography of William Fearing Gill
A Biography of Caroline (Howard) Gilman
A Biography of James Roberts Gilmore
A Biography of Thomas R. Gould
A Biography of Charles Chapman Grafton
Francis Mathews Green - A Biography
A Biography of Richard Gridley
Biographical Sketch of Hattie Tyng Griswold
A Biography of Curtis Guild
A Biography of Curtis Guild
The Biography of Louise Imogen Guiney
The Biography of John Putnam Gulliver
Arnold Hague Biographical Sketch
James Duncan Hague - A Biography
Charles Hale Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Edward Everett Hale
Lucretia Peabody Hale Biographical Sketch
Nathan Hale Biographical Sketch
Susan Hale - A Biography
The Biography of Charles Sumner Hamlin
Isabel Florence Hapgood - A Biography
David Greene Haskins Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Julian Hawthorne
A Biography of Edward Everett Hayden
George Hayward Biographical Sketch
George Peter Alexander Healy - A Biography
Biography of Francis John Higginson
A Biography of Adams Sherman Hill
Biographical Sketch of Frederic Stanhope Hill
George Handel Hill Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Frederick West Holland
Biography of Oliver Wendell Holmes
Biography of Edward Holyoke
Edward Augustus Holyoke - A Biography
Biographical Sketch of Winslow Homer
Biographical Sketch of Henry Augustus Homes
A Biography of William Hooper
Edward Howard House Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Timothy House
A Biography of Henry Marion Howe
A Short Biography of John Badlam Howe
Biographical Sketch of Benjamin Thomas Hoyt
Biography of Gardiner Greene Hubbard
Samuel Hubbard Biography
Ball Hughes - A Biography
Biography of Harriot Keziah Hunt
A Biography of Charles Loring Jackson
Biographical Sketch of John Barnard Swett Jackson
Biographical Sketch of Jonathan Jackson
Julia Bradford Huntington James Biography
Biography of James Jackson Jarves
Biography of Benjamin Joy Jeffries
A Short Biography of Jeremiah Augustus Johnson
Edward Hale Kendall Biographical Sketch
Henry Purkitt Kidder Biographical Sketch
Biography of Samuel Kneeland
Biographical Sketch of Margaret Ruthven Lang
John Williams Langley Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of John Lathrop
Amos Adams Lawrence Biography
Biographical Sketch of Henry Lee
William Lee Biographical Sketch
John Leverett Biographical Sketch
A Biography of Oscar Montgomery Lieber
John Larkin Lincoln Biography
A Biography of Mary Ashton (Rice) Livermore
The Biography of Henry Cabot Lodge
The Biography of Ellis Gray Loring
A Biography of James Lovell
James Lovell Biographical Sketch
A Biography of John Lovell
Joseph Lovering - A Biography
Anna Cabot (Jackson) Lowell Biography
Edward Jackson Lowell - A Biography
Francis Cabot Lowell Biography
John Lowell - A Biography
John Lowell Biographical Sketch
Biography of John Amory Lowell
Percival Lowell Biography
Robert Traill Spence Lowell - A Biography
Theodore Lyman - A Biography
The Biography of George Francis McGinnis
The Biography of Philip Marett
Biography of John Marston
William Mason Biographical Sketch
A Short Biography of George von Lengerke Myer
Biography of George Richards Minot
Samuel Myles - A Biography
John Neagle Biographical Sketch
A Short Biography of Charles Stedman Newhall
William Ripley Nichols Biography
A Short Biography of William Douglas O\'Connor
Thomas O\'Gorman - A Biography
Peter Oliver Biography
Biographical Sketch of Eliza Henderson (Boardman) Otis
Harrison Gray Otis Biographical Sketch
Charles Jackson Paine Biographical Sketch
Robert Treat Paine - A Biography
Robert Treat Paine Biography
George Herbert Palmer - A Biography
A Short Biography of Isaac Parker
James Cutler Dunn Parker - A Biography
Samuel Parker Parker - A Biography
Francis Parkman - A Biography
Francis Parkman Biography
William Parmenter Biography
A Biography of George Patterson
Francis Greenwood Peabody - A Biography
Charles Sprague Pearce Biography
Biographical Sketch of Wendell Phillips
Biography of Edward Charles Pickering
Biography of William Henry Pickering
Albert Pike Biography
David Porter Biography
A Short Biography of Isaac Clark Pray
Biography of Mary Traill Spence (Lowell) Putnam
Biography of Josiah Quincy
Josiah Quincy - A Biography
A Short Biography of Edward Sprague Rand
Joseph Warren Revere Biographical Sketch
Biographical Sketch of Paul Revere
A Short Biography of Paul Joseph Revere
Edward Robinson - A Biography
Harriet Jane (Hanson) Robinson - A Biography
John Rodgers - A Biography
The Biography of Abbott Lawrence Rotch
Benjamin Russell - A Biography
Edward Elbridge Salisbury - A Biography
Charles Sprague Sargent - A Biography
A Biography of Frederick Leroy Sargent
Biography of James Savage
Horace Elisha Scudder - A Biography
The Biography of Samuel Hubbard Scudder
Thomas Oliver Selfridge Biographical Sketch
Robert Gould Shaw - A Biography
The Biography of Edward Shippen
Nathaniel Bradstreet Shurtleff - A Biography
Biographical Sketch of Samuel Francis Smith
A Biography of Thomas Kilby Smith
A Biography of Josiah Snelling
Charles Ellis Stevens - A Biography
Charles Augustus Stoddard - A Biography
A Biography of James Kent Stone
Horatio Robinson Storer - A Biography
Charles Sumner - A Biography
Edwin Vose Sumner - A Biography
A Biography of Joseph Henry Thayer
A Biography of William Roscoe Thayer
George Ticknor - A Biography
Edward Davis Townsend - A Biography
Biography of John Trowbridge
Edward Tuckerman - A Biography
Biography of Henry Theodore Tuckerman
Joseph Tuckerman - A Biography
A Short Biography of William Tudor
Royall Tyler - A Biography
A Biography of George Putnam Upton
Charles Melton Walcot - A Biography
Biography of Francis Amasa Walker
A Biography of Joseph Henry Walker
A Biography of Elizabeth Stuart (Phelps) Ward
The Biography of John Collins Warren
Edwin Lord Weeks Biographical Sketch
Barrett Wendell Biography
William Danforth Whiting - A Biography
James Morris Whiton - A Biography
Biography of Frank Wildes
John Joseph Williams - A Biography
William Copley Winslow - A Biography
Biography of Justin Winsor
A Biography of Robert Charles Winthrop
Alexander Young - A Biography

Massachusetts Facts:
Tree: American elm
Bird: chickadee
Flower: mayflower (trailing arbutus)
Nickname: Bay State, Old Colony State
Motto: Ense Petit Placidam Sub Libertate Quietem (By the Sword We Seek Peace, But Peace Only Under Liberty)
Area (sq. mi.): 8,257
Capitol: Boston
Admitted: 6 Feb 1788

Suffolk County Facts:

Seat: Boston
Established: 1643
Formed from: Original County

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Boston is situated 13 meters above sea level.

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