Dates Of Visits: August 18 & 19, 2018
Location: Faneuil Hall, Congress St, Boston, MA
Mon – Thurs:
10 am – 9 pm
10 am – 7 pm (Winter)
Fri – Sat:
10 am – 9 pm
11 am – 7 pm
Noon – 6 pm (Winter)
There are several parking garages in the area and some street parking. There are also several routes to take on the MBTA to get there. Parking, transportation and driving directions can be found here.
Handicapped Accessible: Yes
Dog Friendly: Yes
Highlights: shopping, family friendly activities, dining, statues, historical
Website: Faneuil Hall Marketplace
Fall has descended upon New England. Big time. It seemed like it was just last week that I was sweating in 80 degree weather. Probably because it was. Yes fall seems to come with a thud. But, it also means sweater weather and foliage. So, it’s a fair trade off as far as I’m concerned.
In an attempt to play catch up before the very busy fall season, I am trying to post as many photo shoots from the summer as I transition into fall.
This particular photo shoot was from Faneuil Hall, the most visited marketplace in Boston. It is a mix of art, history, entertainment, commerce and more.
Faneuil Hall has a long and storied history. Since 1743, Faneuil Hall has served as a market and meeting place. One of the more famous stops on Boston’s Freedom Trail, it has been called the “Cradle Of Liberty.”
Faneuil Hall has two major buildings at the sight. The first one, Faneuil Hall Marketplace mostly sells wares from a variety of top name shops.
Located behind Faneuil Hall, Quincy Market serves up a variety of foods. From Thai to tacos, Quincy Market has pretty much any type of food you can imagine. I prefer Quincy Market naturally.
Fanueil Hall Marketplace has a variety of statues on their premises. One of the first statues you may see depending on which way you travel to the marketplace is the statue of former mayor Kevin Hagan White.
One of the lesser known, or at least less talked about mayors of Boston, Kevin White served as mayor during a pivotal time in Boston’s history. The 51st mayor of Boston, Kevin White may be one of the least talked about mayors (particularly in a positive sense), yet he has a very interesting story and he governed Boston during a very tumultuous time. Elected at the age of 38, Mayor White would hold office from 1968 until 1984 (so much for term limits). During his time as mayor, White would govern during the racially divisive era of school busing. Tensions about his handling of busing and race relations in the city during this time so much that his critics derisively called him, “Kevin Black.” Race relations have always been a blemish on our past and Mayor White had his difficulties in this realm. But, he also governed during a time of immense growth and development for the city. The fact that White isn’t well known positively or negatively shows he was a steady hand during a difficult time.
A bronze statue was dedicated to Mayor White on November 1, 2006. The statue, sculpted by Pablo Eduardo, shows Kevin White walking down the street.
The over-sized statue of White is meant to suggest he was a “larger than life” mayor. He does have some pretty big shoes to fill.
There are quotes from Mayor White’s inaugurations inscribed on the grounds.
There are other statues at Faneuil Hall. In front of Faneuil Hall, at the entrance to the marketplace is a statue of politician and activist Samuel Adams.
The bronze statue was sculpted by Miss Ann Whitney in 1876 (although it was erected initially in 1880).
There are several inscriptions on each of the four panels that read as follows: ‘Samuel Adams 1722-1803 – A Patriot – He organized the Revolution, and signed the Declaration of Independence. Governor – A True Leader of the People. Erected A. D. 1880, from a fund bequeathed to the city of Boston by Jonathan Phillips. A statesman, incorruptible and fearless.’
The pedestal for the bronze statue is ten feet high. The statue sits upon a polished Quincy granite base and cap and a lower nine-feet square base of unpolished Quincy Granite.
Another person who is memorialized with a statue is James Michael Curley.
In stark contrast to Mayor White, Mayor Michael Curley was not overlooked nor was he without his share of notoriety. Curley was re-elected while under indictment for mail fraud which he would eventually be convicted of in 1947 (he would later receive a full pardon for this and an earlier conviction in 1904 by President Truman). He even technically remained mayor while in prison (his position was served by City Clerk John B Hynes while he was locked up).
Despite all of his escapades, Curley was a beloved mayor and was often thought of as a warrior for the working class.
Technically, these statues are across the street from Faneuil Hall Marketplace and not technically on the grounds of the marketplace.
This statue is sure to be less controversial. At least in New England.
Clutching a cigar (from his tradition of lighting a cigar when he thought his team had the game won before the final buzzer) and a book in another hand, Red Auerbach sits proudly on the walkway in Faneuil Hall Marketplace. A plaque espouses his accomplishments.
Two other Boston sports figures are memorialized at Faneuil Hall. Bronze sneakers of “Legend” Larry Bird, Hall of Fame Forward and 3 time NBA MVP for the Boston Celtics, and Bill Rodgers, a 4 time Boston Marathon winner (including 3 in a row from 1978-1980) and former American record holder for running the Boston Marathon (2:09:27 or a 4:56 average mile – not too shabby).
There are also a variety of family friendly activities at Faneuil Hall. Over the years, Fanueil Hall has transformed itself from just a shopping center and tourist hub to a place where people of all ages and backgrounds can have fun.
Each weekend during the summer they have special family friendly events such as puppet shows.
There are chess tables set up for people to test their skills. There is even a Chess Blitz Tournament for more skilled players to compete against other worthy opponents. I’m definitely not on that level.
Of course, the biggest attractions at Faneuil Hall are the stores and historical tours. Scores of stores line the cobblestone walkways. When it gets busier in the day, especially during the summer and holidays, the narrow walkways can get crowded.
With the pretty flowers and tall buildings, the best part of Faneuil Hall may be the views.
Part of Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Quincy Market is home to dozens of restaurants and food takeout establishments. There are no shops in that building. They only serve up food and beverages. There are also areas to eat your food and people watch. Signs from old businesses from that area.
There is also a piano. But, this is no ordinary piano. It is a piano from the Play Me I’m Yours piano playing program from 2016. As an aside, I sometimes cringe when I look at my older posts. I didn’t use photoshop and I posted way too may photos of the very same thing (even more than I post in my current blog posts). But, I’ve also noticed I wrote more than I do now and I am trying to add more commentary, especially as a way to include facts and context to the photos.
During my visit there was an exhibit of old colonial style clothing and rifles. There are a lot of these types of exhibits, particularly during the summer and patriotic holidays.
Fanueil Hall is chock full of history. One could post a series of blog posts aboutthe history of the buildings and the area and still not do it justice. One nugget I am aware of is about a grasshopper. Specifically, this grasshopper.
There are many stories about this grasshopper weathervane. One tour guide mentioned it played a role in identifying patriots rather than loyalists.
Another story holds that that Shem Drowne, a wealthy merchant who had been discouraged by his many failures in colonial New England, was inspired by a grasshopper. Contemplating his losses and failures, Drowne laid down in a field where he saw a boy chasing a grasshopper. He and the boy became friends and when he later met the boy’s parents they adopted him thus enabling him to live a more prosperous life. The grasshopper was meant to commemorate a turning point in his life. The truth may be much less interesting and exciting.
According to this article, the grasshopper simply was a sign of commerce. Since Faneuil Hall Marketplace was on the shore (the area has changed a but over the years) and it was visible to ships coming ashore it gave a clear signal they were open for business. I think this is most likely the true story behind the grasshopper.
Dogs are also welcome at Faneuil Hall Marketplace.
This cutie had her eyelashes done for her trip to the marketplace. You might be able to see her lashes better in the second photo.
Below is a video of a quick walk-through of Quincy Market. The foods smell as good as they look!
There are also lots of entertainers and shows at Faneuil Hall during the warmer seasons. The Flying Hawaiian Show is one of these shows. She is amazingly talented and such a great entertainer!