Boston's History Of Beer & Bars
Party Tradition Continues Today In Clubs & Pubs
PubClub.com's Freedom Trail tour guide, Sam Jones, in front of an historic tavern.
By Kevin Wilkerson, PubClub.com Travel Writer
It all started with the earliest Bostonians.
During the time of the American Revolution, there were 16 breweries in Boston. The seaport was thriving with taverns, many with interesting names and colorful signs to attract both sailors and settlers.
John Hancock used to put kegs on the Boston Common then invite the townspeople to his golden-domed house for late-night parties. "Come one, come all!"
Even Paul Revere, on the evening of his famous Midnight Run, twice stopped at the pubs before delivering his message tol the people. After all, Boston was originally marshland and beer tasted better than the salty drinking water.
So there have to be good bars in this town, right? Well, yest there are, so many that PubClub.com has created separate stories on where to find Irish pubs, casual bars. live music venues, the oldest bar in Boston (which has live music) and big clubs.
There is also a link to a story about the traditional bars people go to before and after Red Sox games at Fenway Park. Here are the links:
• Boston's Best Casual Bars & Pubs
• Nightclubs, Dance Clubs and Live Music Venues
• Fenway Park Bars
There are many restaurants, bars and much activity by Faneuil Hall.
And now, here's a little about Boston to help you get situated.
The centerpiece of the city is Boston Common. This 50-acre park is a place to relax, enjoy summer concerts, ice skate in Frog Pond in winter and sit on a bench and read this PubClub guide to the city. Established in 1634 to be a public, or common, ground for the people, it is where the British troops camped prior to the Revolutionary War.
It is framed by five streets: Beacon, Charles, Tremont, Boylston and Park. One of the main T stops is here (Park Street) and the corner of Park and Tremont is an open-expression area somewhat similar to London's Speaker's Corner. The big domed building at the peak of Beacon Street is the former home of John Hancock known as the State House.
Across busy Charles Street is the Boston Public Garden, another open space which has a statue of George Washington at the Arlington Street entrance and soothing swan boat rides on the pond for $2.
From what we'll call Boston's Speaker's Corner, walk north along Tremont (toward the Omni Parker House hotel and past the Granary Burying Ground where Hancock, Paul Revere and Samuel Adams are entombed), through the expansive Government Center (a convenient airport T location) and across car-crazed Congress Street. That dominant three-story brick building is famous Faneuil Hall.
This is where town meetings in old Boston were held is the center of the original city where settlers gathered and the British came ashore. Tourists, taverns and restaurants – including famous Quincy Market – comprise this largely pedestrian area of brick and cobblestone streets. Facing the water, the Italian North End is a 5-minute walk to the left.
Back across the Common and past the Public Garden is fashionable Newberry Street (and what is known as the Back Bay) with its high-end shops and outdoor cafes; use the high-rise Prudential building as a landmark. Fenway Park is past the end of Newberry, at roughly at the intersection of Commonwealth and Brookline.(See our article on enjoying a game at Fenway.)
The lovely little town of Cambridge is across the Charles River – walking is possible over the bridges – and it's the Charles where boats and rowers can be seen. The Esplanade park runs along the Charles and is full of runners, walkers, rollerbladers and summer concerts. The Battle of Bunker Hill and the USS Constitution are also across the Charles on the North End side in the town of Charleston.