Saturday, Sep 16, 2017 10:00a -
Boston Common Outside the Park Street MBTA Station
Corner of Park Street and Tremont Street
Starting with the great epidemic of 1633 that wiped out natives and newcomers alike throughout New England, smallpox was a recurring enemy to all Bostonians. In this unique walking tour, you’ll see many familiar sights from the Freedom Trail route in a whole new light!
Join us as we step into the past and discover the roots of Boston’s birth as a beacon of medical research. You’ll walk the same route that Puritans took almost 400 years ago, from the Common to the town docks (which are no longer on the waterfront). You’ll find Boston’s first reservoir – its location may surprise you – and make your way to the North End, then teeming with disease-carrying sailors from faraway ports.
Along the way, we’ll answer many questions: Why would someone throw a bomb through Cotton Mather’s window in 1721? Why was the site that is now Old State House one of the more infectious places in Puritan Boston? Why was Anne Hutchinson blamed for an epidemic – not of germs but of rebellious thought?
Finally, you’ll review the results of the remarkable cleanup of the town by Boston’s first Public Health Commissioner, whose actions set the stage for the world’s first vaccine.
…and the name of the first Public Health Commissioner? Paul Revere!