Walking the Post Road

“ As to politeness and humanity, they (the northern provinces of colonial America), they are much alike except in the great towns where the inhabitants are more civilized, especially att Boston”

Dr. Alexander Hamilton, Gentleman’s Progress: The Itinerarium, 1744 (1)

Left: Paramount Theater Boston Theater District, Opened 1932 reopened 2010.

Right: Empire Garden Restaurant, Chinatown. Washington Street between Beach and Kneeland. 1/2 mile from Old State House. Formerly the Cove area.

Left: Seal in pavement with image of Boston Gate, Washington Street near East Berkeley St, South End

        Left: Province House Plaque                                  Right: View down Washington Street

                                                                                                    near Downtown Crossing

Right: Washington Street at Herald Street overlooking the Massachusetts Turnpike. The desolation as a result of redevelopment and the impact of the highway and railroad tracks act as a gate to the old town just as surely as the original gate on the Neck.

Above: Wayside at the Silver Line station, corner of Washington and East Berkeley Streets. This is the approximate location of the original entrance to the town of Boston. The map shows the original shoreline as well as subsequent development of Boston by reclamation of land submerged in the first two hundred years of colonial life in Boston.

1 Carl Bridenbaugh, Cities in the Wilderness: The First Century of Urban Life in America, 1625-1742 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1938; paperback edition, 1971), 6.

2 Ibid, 6.

3 Ibid., 4.

4 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_towns_and_cities_in_England_by_historical_population

5 US Census, population of 24 Urban places, 1790, http://www.census.gov/population/www/documentation/twps0027/tab02.txt, accessed April 22, 2010

6 http://www.oldsouthmeetinghouse.org/default.aspx

7 see Van Wyck Brooks, The Flowering of the New England Mind (New York: EP Dutton & Co., Inc., 1936; reprint Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1981, for details

8 Walter Muir Whitehill, Boston: A Topographical History, 2d ed. enlarged (Cambridge: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1968), 104.

9 http://www.census.gov/population/www/documentation/twps0027/tab03.txt

10 http://www.census.gov/population/www/documentation/twps0027/tab08.txt

11 Wayside Washington Street and Herald Street at Silver Line station. Every station shelter has an extremely interesting exhibit about the history of the area around the shelter complete with images and maps.