Boston Common

  • Vicinity: Beacon St, Park St, Tremont St, Boylston St and Charles St
  • Neighborhood of Beacon Hill in Boston
  • Travel Genus: Sight
  • Sight Category: Historic District

Considered the oldest public park in the United States, Boston Common played an important role in the history of conservation, landscape architecture, military and political history, and recreation in Massachusetts. The Common and the adjoining Public Garden are among the greatest amenities and most visited outdoor public spaces in Boston. The history of the Common's use by the city illuminates the conservation movement in Massachusetts and mirrors similar models carried out by American conservationists throughout the nation. - NPS

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Boston Common


Y/M/D Person Association Description Composition Food Event
Y/M/D Person Association Description Composition Food Event
1634/00/00 The townspeople of Boston vote to tax each household 6 schillings for the purchase of William Blackstone's farm to be used as a community common. The Common served a combination of public, military, agricultural and recreational purposes.
1756/00/00 The Central Burying Ground, located on Boston Common on Boylston Street near Tremont Street, is established by buying land from Andrew Oliver Jr. The site was previously a portion of Col Fitch's pasture at the bottom of the Common.
1770/02/26 John Adams Mourner John Adams encounters Seider's funeral near the Liberty Tree (lost, corner of Essex and Washington Sts, near Boston Common. "I saw a vast Collection of People, near Liberty Tree - enquired and found the funeral of the Child, lately kill'd by Richardson." Death of Christopher Seider
1823/11/26 Thomas Curtis Died Thomas Curtis dies in Boston, Massachusetts. Mr Curtis is buried at the Central Burying Ground, located in Boston Common on Boylston Street near Tremont Street.
1824/08/24 Dorothy Hancock Scott Life Hundreds of spectators wave and cheer Lafayette as he slowly parades down Common (now Tremont) Street. Lafayette halts his barouche when he recognizes Dorothy Hancock Scott sitting on the balcony of her home on Colonnade Row near Avery Street (lost). Lafayette's Triumphal Tour of America
1850/01/08 Frances Loring Curtis Died Frances Greely Loring Curtis dies in Boston, Massachusetts. Mrs Curtis is buried at the Central Burying Ground, Boston. Central Burying Ground is located in Boston Common on Boylston Street near Tremont Street.
1850/10/31 Caleb Loring Died Caleb Loring dies at Boston, Massachusetts. Mr Loring is buried at the Central Burying Ground in Boston Common.
1926/00/00 H L Mencken Publisher H L Mencken is arrested by the vice squad on Boston Common for selling an edition of The American Mercury that has been deemed obscene by the New England Watch and Ward Society. The offending work is a story is about a prostitute who seeks forgiveness.

Data »

Particulars for Boston Common:
Area of Significance Conservation
Area of Significance Entertainment - Recreation
Sight Category Historic District
Criteria Historic Event
Level of Significance National
Historic Use Park
Historic Use Plaza

US National Registry of Historic Places Data »

Accurate at time of registration:

Registry Name:
Registry Address:
Registry Number: 87000760
Resource Type:
Owner: Local
Architect: St. Gaudens,Augustus
Other Certification: Designated National Landmark
Nominator Name: National Historic Landmark
Level of Significance: National
Area of Significance: Entertainment-recreation
Applicable Criteria: Event
Period of Significance: 1650-1699, 1600-1649, 1900-1924, 1700-1749, 1875-1899, 1800-1824, 1750-1799, 1850-1874, 1825-1849
Significant Year: 1634, 1862
Historic Function: Landscape
Historic Sub-Function: Park, Plaza
Current Function: Landscape
Current Sub-Function: Park Plaza

Creative Works »

For the Union Dead (book) Poems
Robert Lowell
My First Experience with the Great Logician (short story) Short Story Jacques Futrelle I had dined at the Hotel Teutonic ... and started for a stroll across Boston Common. It was after eight oclock on one of those clear, nippy evenings of winter.
The Age of Innocence (book) Novel Edith Wharton "Age of Innocence' is set in Boston Common, 1870s

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