Two teens take a selfie in a gallery at the Old State Hosue.

2021 Revolutionary Documentary Contest

Sept. 23, 2020 To promote an interest for our state’s history, Revolutionary Spaces and Boston Duck Tours, with the support of Revolution 250, are sponsoring a video documentary contest for students in grades 6, 7, and 8. The winning team will receive a $1,000 prize to be divided among the team members.  Each team member will also receive a family Boston Duck Tour and  passes to the Old State House. Teams may consist of four or fewer students. This is… Read more 2021 Revolutionary Documentary Contest

On Protest in the Streets of Boston

By Nathaniel Sheidley, President & CEO The two city blocks connecting these national landmarks – Boston’s Old State House and Old South Meeting House – are hallowed ground for our American tradition of protest. On August 14, 1765, a crowd protesting the hated Stamp Act walked this same path.  They began at Liberty Tree, a great elm located at what is now the intersection of Essex and Washington Streets, where an effigy of Andrew Oliver (the official responsible for enforcement… Read more On Protest in the Streets of Boston

How to Care for Your Home Library

By Nicole McAllister, Special Collections Librarian We have them all over our homes, we probably don’t think too much about them, and they are there when we need them – it’s our books! Books are a great resource for reference, self-improvement, and a fun escape.  And there’s no better time to think about how to care for them than during Preservation Month. When thinking about our book collections, there are safe areas and spaces to store them. Ideally, we would… Read more How to Care for Your Home Library

Conserving the Memory of Crispus Attucks

By Jill Conley, Registrar & Collections Manager; and Nicole McAllister, Special Collections Librarian On March 6, 1770, the day after the Boston Massacre, the coroner filed an autopsy report for Crispus Attucks, a formerly enslaved man of African and Native descent who was the first to die at the “Incident on King Street.” In the autopsy report, Attucks is identified as “Michael Johnson,” a name which he might have been using to protect himself from being re-enslaved. Within days of… Read more Conserving the Memory of Crispus Attucks

18th Century vs. Today

Margaret Kemble Gage & Meghan Markle During the Revolution, many Colonists found their loyalties tested due to the strain between being legally and socially British citizens yet also being American colonists. This tension was felt across all social classes, and one example is the complicated position wherein Margaret Kemble Gage found herself. Born to a wealthy New Jersey family in 1734, Margaret was raised a well-to-do Colonial woman, with ties to family and social circles in New York. Her wealth… Read more 18th Century vs. Today

Transforming Rep Hall

At the end of 2019, as we geared up to change exhibits in Representatives Hall in the Old State House, we noticed a fair amount of cosmetic updates that needed to be made. We thought we were in for some paint touch-ups, minor plaster work, and a good cleaning. Once our preservation team took a closer look, we realized the issues we set out to fix were not superficial by any means, and extended beyond skin-deep. Our Facilities and Preservation… Read more Transforming Rep Hall

#StandWithMashpee

Revolutionary Spaces Stands With Mashpee On behalf of Revolutionary Spaces, we hereby express our organization’s undivided support for the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe in their struggle to preserve in federal trust the ancestral lands of the Mashpee people. Revolutionary Spaces cares for Boston’s Old State House and Old South Meeting House and is dedicated to bringing people together at these nationally significant historic sites to explore the American struggle to create and sustain a free society.  We recognize that these colonial-era… Read more #StandWithMashpee

Get to Know Our Preservation Team

May is Preservation Month! Even in these times of physical distancing, our preservation team often visits the Old State House and Old South Meeting House to ensure proper care of our historic sites. Along the way, they always stick to physical distancing guidelines, working more than 6’ away from others, and wearing masks anytime they go downtown.  While the rest of us are busy working from home, we caught up with our preservation team to learn more about them and… Read more Get to Know Our Preservation Team

Poetry in the Time of Corona

Recently, a small group of us gathered to hear Charles Coe perform poetry, exploring memory, life, and loss. Watch as Charles reads two of his original poems, “Love in the Time of Corona” and “Something in the Wind.” LOVE IN THE TIME OF CORONA  (with apologies to Gabriel García Márquez) by Charles Coe In ancient Greece, men shook hands as a demonstration of good faith to show they weren’t armed. In these days of fever and fear we keep our… Read more Poetry in the Time of Corona

The roofline of the Old State House.

How the 18th Century (Actually) Responded to Illness

This post is written in response to “How the 18th Century Responded to Illness Before Netflix and Zoom,” published on April 6, 2020. Last week, we published a blog post describing  how six prominent 18th-century Bostonians lived and dealt with illness in their lives. This piece drew on previous research for the “character cards” we use at the Old State House museum — a tool designed to help visitors move past the mythic dimensions of Revolutionary history and think about… Read more How the 18th Century (Actually) Responded to Illness