WHAT: Old South Meeting House, a museum and National Historic Landmark on Boston's Freedom Trail, will celebrate Boston Charter Day on Saturday, September 7, 2013, by offering free admission to Massachusetts residents (with ID or proof of residency) and by ringing their bell at 4:30 pm (1630 military time). The 1801 bronze bell, cast by patriot and silversmith Paul Revere in his North End foundry, will be rung on its wheel by MIT Professor of Mathematics David Vogan, in chorus with seven others across Boston, Watertown, and Dorchester. A walking tour of the Boston Founders Trail, presented by the Partnership of the Historic Bostons, will commence immediately after the bell-ringing from the Walgreens plaza across the street from Old South Meeting House.
WHO: The Boston Charter Day celebration is presented by the Partnership for the Historic Bostons, a non-political, non-profit organization established in 1999 to recognize and celebrate the unique historical connection between Boston, Massachusetts, and Boston, Lincolnshire, England. Old South Meeting House, a cultural anchor in Boston's downtown for over 275 years, is pleased to take part in this celebration of Boston's founding and the Massachusetts Bay Charter. Professor David Vogan of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who has rung the bell at Old South Meeting House since its installation in the steeple in 2011, will serve as the honorary bell ringer for the celebration.
WHEN: Saturday, September 7, 2013
Free admission for Massachusetts residents from 9:30 am to 5 pm. Bell-ringing at 4:30 pm.
WHERE: Old South Meeting House, 310 Washington Street, at the intersection of Milk Street, Boston, MA 02108, in Downtown Crossing. The bell is best heard from the street outside of the Meeting House but is not visible through the louvers. Visitors are not admitted into the steeple for the bell-ringing.
WHY: One of the nation's most important colonial sites, Old South Meeting House was built as a Puritan church and was the largest building in colonial Boston. A favorite stage in Boston's drama of revolution, Old South Meeting House is the place where unprecedented numbers of attendees from all walks of life engaged in debate and dialogue that would change the fate of a nation. These gatherings were larger and more inclusive meetings than were ever held in the colony, earning the building a reputation as the hotbed of rebellion, and later the moniker "Boston's Sanctuary of Freedom." Today, Old South Meeting House is a busy museum, treasured National Historic Landmark and an active center for civic dialogue and free expression in the heart of downtown Boston.
Each year, the Partnership for the Historic Bostons commemorates the naming of Boston, Watertown, and Dorchester on September 7, 1630, with a series of events to teach the public about the early days of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. This year's theme is "Crime and Punishment in Early Massachusetts." More information can be found at www.historicbostons.org.